team pic
Mental Health

Don’t Panic – Why I’m Doing the Mystery Box Rally

I was having a virtual stroll around the Interwebs when I noticed a post from my friend Claire. Her co-driver for the 2016 Mystery Box Rally had dropped out and she needed a replacement.
I knew she was entering and essentially what the rally was –

Teams will drive unknown cars along a mystery route in this unique 5 day challenge, all in the name of cancer research. The mad baby brother of Shitbox Rally, Mystery Box is smaller and shorter but no less ridiculous. You fly into the departure `location with no car and no idea of where you’re heading, but ready for an adventure.

As I read the post calling for a replacement co-driver I though to myself “I wish I was the kind of person that did this kind of thing”. It occurred to me a few short moments later that I could be! I had a quick look around the website to make sure I knew what I would be getting into and sent Claire a message.

This is not the kind of thing I would ever have had the confidence to do before. A mystery journey in a mystery car – it is impossible to do the level of planning (and associated worrying) that I would usually do even for a short drive to an unfamiliar location.

The entire thing is about raising money for the Cancer Council in Australia who fund vital research into curing cancer. This is a cause very close to my heart and to my family who have lost many loved ones to the disease.

The timing of this opportunity was uncanny. The day before I had been in a particularly challenging session with my psychologist.

We have done some great work dealing with my anxiety and depression issues and have developed a strong and varied tool kit that helps me maximise the potential in my life. My focus on mindfulness, kindness, giving and gratitude was born out of these sessions. As we have tackled more and more ‘surface’ issues we have been moving closer and closer to some deep emotional root causes of some of the ways I feel and think.

Losing my mother to cancer at age 3 had, and continues to have, a profound impact on my life. It was only in this recent session that we really got down to the core of these impacts and started looking at the ways I can move forward. 

I’ll save the rest of that story for a more detailed post in the future when I have figured out exactly how to share it properly.

Needless to say, to have had a very painful (yet hopeful) eye opening with its roots in losing loved ones to cancer had really set me up to leap at the chance to help raise money for cancer research.

Claire and I got chatting and decided to call our team ‘Don’t Panic’ and to both dress as Arthur Dent for the entire rally. We went shopping for matching dressing gowns and pyjamas and made a team photograph.13315490_1065378123520764_3757606222773116849_n

We plan on drinking tea, handing out biscuits and looking confused in our pyjamas for the whole event. This will be good for me. I will have no choice but to ‘just be’ as each day unfolds with it’s challenges and surprises. To say I am excited is an understatement.

I’ve seen videos from previous and similar events and I am looking forward to making new connections. The sharing of the experience with the other participants will be amazing. I’ll be driving Claire insane during the day in the car but we camp every night together as a group. I can see the opportunities for those filmic moment I always thought were for ‘other people’.

So now we have until September to raise a minimum of $3000 for the Cancer Council.

Claire has a fantastic event arranged for this coming weekend (I will have unfortunatley have left for the UK)

The Tiny Festival Fundrasier


There will be live music, raffles and stalls during the day, including award winning artist Benitta displaying her prints, shirts and more.

Tickets are $30 per person and include barefoot bowls, a gourmet burger, a beverage and entertainment. Tickets can be purchased by emailing or calling The Boo on 07 3251 3434.

11:00 venue open
12:00 burgers cooking
12:00 to 4:00 live music

Musicians include:

Jessica Sarah the gorgeous indie/pop singer songwriter who has played at Woodford Folk Festival and with Darren Percival from The Voice as well as on Triple J’s Unearthed.

Celtic, folk and bluegrass session with Mal Winckle & Pete Lans from the Sunburnt Celts playing with special guest Davydd McDonald.

Our ukulele playing friends Cesca, Geoffrey, Tony and Pete aka YellowBird (Band) West End, Brisbane playing their own bluesy/swing/country brand of locally flavoured originals, with some ol’ timeless numbers.

Aria nominated singer, songwriter, musician, master of folk/country/blues Danny Widdicombe! Danny has played lead guitar for Bernard Fanning, Tim Rogers, Karl Broadie, Andrew Morris. You may have seen Danny playing at festivals or in one of his SIX! other bands, The Wilson Pickers, The Painted Ladies, The Good Ol’ Boys, The Honeysliders and The Maze. Danny also hosts theThe Campfire Sessions – Open Mic at Lefty’s.

We are collecting donations at:

Every Day Hero Page

You can follow our shenanigans on our FB page at:

Team Don’t Panic on Facebook

Mental Health


“Life is a tapestry woven from the threads of our connections”

I attempted to muse thoughtfully via my usual outlet – a Facebook status update.

Recent output on this ‘channel’ had ranged from cheese and wine emergencies, failed attempts to adult and sharing of inspirational memes.( I wonder how many other people spend a great deal of time considering their personal Facebook page as a ‘channel’?) Perhaps this update didn’t quite fit.

What I thought had been a profound and a rather nice metaphor was quite quickly shot down by no less than two family members, I suspect for use of the word ‘tapestry’, in a poignant reminder that maybe social media isn’t the place for these kinds of things. People won’t always read the intention behind a message or feel that yearning for connection.

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Mental Health

Breakfast for One

I’m writing from a coffee shop, on my phone, which probably isn’t that unusual in the grand scheme of things.
However I’m here on my own, I’m not waiting for anyone. I’ve got my coffee and some breakfast and I’m feeling quite content.
The thought of dining alone, or doing anything alone for that matter, would have once filled me with absolute dread. But today I feel calm and relaxed.
I like that I can be around people. There is an energy in a busy place that is just not there in an empty apartment.

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