Knitting and Knife Attacks

Knitting and Knife Attacks

I spent the morning knitting and organising in the beautiful space at Wellgood Socials, listening to people offer and receive peer support and organising community events. A new association has blossomed this week- the Family Craft Club which will start in a few weeks. It grew out of a conversation between two women, earlier this week, who discovered they had a shared love of scrap booking. A family after school gathering once a week. One of the women leant over to me and whispered, ‘this is a lifeline for me you know’. And I have to say I’ve really noticed a bounce in her step of late.

Then I witnessed a street fight. I’d driven into town to drop someone off and was almost home when I saw a group of around 10 men and a woman screaming and running up the street. I saw one had a knife and was brandishing it at three of the men. I had to stop my car as they were in the middle of the road, right in front of me. I felt scared instantly as I was worried the men might try to get in my car to escape from the knife wielding man. They looked really frenzied and I thought they were weighing up their option. I felt scared. I locked myself in. And the man with the knife ran up the side street. The other men and the woman took chase after him, throwing bricks.

For a minute I worried that I might get hit by a brick through the car window. I wondered if to call 999 and then saw the man in the sandwich shop on the phone. I guessed he wouldn’t be on to his mother. I drove on, inventing possible stories in my head, and feeling sad. 11 people who were no doubt living a life they’d never imagined for themselves, or wish on anyone else. It was in the same area where I’d been pulled off my bike by someone desperate for money during the pandemic.

It made me think about the benches we are seeking to provide around the neighbourhood to enable those with less mobility to take a breath every now and then. In the park the other day, a mother had said she was worried that ‘druggies’ might sit on them. Got me thinking about how we reclaim the streets together and create healing centred spaces. Got me thinking about community bobbies too. There’s been a good number of people who have been talking about bobbies lately.
Joy and pain. It’s complicated.


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