The Fragility of Life

Posted by Antony Pryde on September 21, 1998 at 22:05:18:

The Fragility of Life

Even though I hardly knew Troy, the fact that someone I knew had his life taken at such a tender age, in the blink of an eye, disturbed me greatly.

It was Saturday night. The usual crowd was hanging out at Tonyís house. The warm night air was filled with heavy music, the slapping of skateboards on the ramp, and the happy chatter of youthful voices. I cut my way through the crowded pool room. As I passed through the smoke filled air I received slurred greetings from my drunken mates.
I was happy. In one hand I had my beautiful girlfriend, Jade, and in the other a can of Jim-Beam and coke. I was glad to have a relaxing night out, chilling with all my best mates, after another intense week of year twelve. I knew I really should be working on my CATís, but I felt I deserved a bit of a break. I spotted Ashley sitting in the kitchen talking to Heather. He smiled, genuinely happy to see me. As he waved he dropped his beer, I laughingly gave him a hug and asked how he was. He then took me out the back, past the roaring barbecue, to meet the rest of the crew. Rory was sitting on a chair with another blonde bird sprawled across his lap. I didnít quite know what it was about him, but every party he had a different one, without fail. I watched as Andrew skilfully skated the mini-ramp. He rode with a smooth style. I watched his arms, spread out, as he balanced. I followed with my eye the cigarette in his right hand as it glowed, spearing through the night.
I ran up the ramp and crouched down next to Matt, Eddie, Gavin and Jared. They all yelled my name as Matt tackled me to the floor of the platform. I tripped Matt over and rolled across next to Eddie. I grabbed his bottle of Tequila and took a swig, the salty liquid burnt down my throat, and the warmth cradled my body.
I grabbed a skateboard off Jared and pumped my way up the transition of the ramp. The rush as I flowed back and forth swept my consciousness off to internal thoughts. I smiled lovingly as I thought of Jade. My thoughts were broken as my right foot slipped off the deck and I crashed back to the earth. I floated back inside. As I did, I spotted what I thought to be a familiar face. I sat on the couch and watched the guy stroll past me. I could have sworn I knew him, I nudged Ashley asking him who the mystery guy was. ďHimÖthatís Troy, Ant!Ē Troy, thatís him! It clicked, I remember him, I bumped into him skating in the city with Clinton one time.
I strode over to Jade, and hugged her from behind, she glanced over her shoulder, smiling seductively. I held her tight as she shot for the eight ball, over-cutting the eight hit the back cushion, she giggled as she threw her arms around my neck. I pulled her close as I kissed her soft, wet lips.
Later in the night I was out the back talking to Tony, then Troy sat down next to me, we chatted and caught up, and had an absorbing conversation. As I listened to him happily talk of nothing much in particular, I thought he and I could become good mates.

That was the last time I ever saw Troy. That coming Monday, fate intervened, as Troy was unfairly struck down by an express train at Bentleigh station and killed. This shook me to my foundations. One-second Troy was at a carefree party enjoying himself, and the next he was stolen away.
This made me sit up and realise how incredibly fragile life really is. I now know that one must take advantage of each second that they are given, it may be their last. We must all live life to the fullest of itís potential, we are granted but only a single chance, and this chance should be utilised correctly.
I now perceive life as a gift, not as some tedious and meaningless task. Many teenagers do unfortunately feel that the grind of life is bringing them down, and they go on to waste their precious moments on insignificant means. They do not harvest the crop of life in a more nourishing manner, and this is very tragic.
Although it took a sorrowful incident to remind me of these universal facts, at-least I can aim to change my ways, and the ways of others. We all have the ability to love and care for one another and we as a society need to increase the occurrence of this. During each moment of time we must appreciate those around us; family, friends, enemies, all these, they could be gone the next moment, and you will miss them, and regret what could have been. I beg that you donít wait until you lose a loved one to realise this, realise this now and act upon it, whilst you still canÖ

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