Sometimes you feel like you’re having one of those lifetimes – you know, where yesterday and tomorrow are fully interchangeable.
I come from a long line of desk dwellers with just the extras changed – one had a ruler, another a view from a cell in a government beehive. Pen-pushers, the lot of us.
With longing, I look at the photos of my actor great-grandfather and grandmother in their dramatic black-and-white costumes before returning to my laptop.
Anyway, as I switch between my two screens, I notice an email. The subject line: “Wanted for Kakadu: CEO and part-time croc wrangler”.
Hmmmnn. Besides being totally unqualified, I could just fancy that job.
Magical words – Kakadu, croc and wrangler. Already, I see myself in khaki. Haven’t I written stories about crocs? Just the other day I read one about someone being discovered inside one. I’ve lived in Cairns.
Wrangler? Well, haven’t I wrangled plenty of difficult customers over the years? Not to mention my family. Practically qualified.
I allow myself to dream about sunlit gorges for a while as urgent emails glare at me. Then I open the Kakadu email. “Take a ride on the wilder side of life and sign up for crocs, buffalo and the ultimate job – park manager of Kakadu National Park.”
Somebody really smart has written this Indiana Jones-style job description. “This is the top job and it’s not for the faint-hearted… You’ll use every lesson you’ve learnt, every skerrick of drive and every ounce of experience you have...”
My imagination fires up. I’m on my way, looking into appropriate schools in the area, making friends with the locals, buying heavy duty, yet stylish boots.
I’m striding through whatever kind of jungle they have in Kakadu (I’m a little sketchy on the details), and the crocs are practically eating out of my hand.
“Think Game of Thrones. You’re a Stark, you’re warden of the north (though winter never comes).”
I’m so there. Even though I don’t know what a Stark is.
In my head, I arrive. I take off my Akubra, and run my hand through my inexplicably longer and blonder hair.
The view from my office takes in the whole of Kakadu. On the desk is a laptop, and another screen for ease of multi-tasking. Next to it is a huge stack of papers. “Now,” my assistant says, “if you could just sign a few things…”