Well sad news over the weekend that Dougy was found dead early Sat morning (circumstances presently unknown). It took a couple of days for the emotion to hit, but it did, and I spent today wandering around town. I found a full packet of cigarettes and a ten dollar note on the ground, which would have made Dougy very happy.
I hadn't spoken to Dougy this year. In fact the last time we spoke was about October last year, after I sat with him in court, with his social worker and celebrity lawyer (someone I didn't know from Big Brother). He had a long list of serious charges that should have seen him put away but the Judge took a different tact.. deciding the best chance for Doug, and perhaps society, was for him to report daily to the Salvation Army 'Oasis Program' for down and out men in need of intensive personal care. As we left the building he shook my hand and thanked me for my support. Then nothing until I spotted him two weeks ago on the ground, out drunk cold, being picked up by an ambulance crew..
He was probably Melbourne's most alcoholic, hospitalized, troublesome, arrested homeless man. When confronted about God, he always replied "he loves me.. he does" and when confronted about his alcoholism, he always replied "I can't help it.. that's the way I am"; a statement of his own submission to the hopelessness in his mind born from the pains and struggles of his heart. And yet in the time I knew him I saw him sober up, commit his life to God, and a few times struggle to free himself from the demon of the bottle. A freedom he now enjoys, at the cost of his own mortality, in a place where hope is reborn. Resting in the arms of Abraham.