I have an imaginary friend. It came about from a drawing that Michael Leunig did for me at a book signing. I wanted a picture of his duck. The duck that follows Leunig around in his cartoons. I’m not sure when or how, but I decided a couple of years after seeing this picture daily that I would have my own duck follow me around.
About a month before I came to London I went on a Buddhist Dharma Gathering – a meditation retreat – with my mother. While on the retreat the idea came up that nothing actually exists – all that there is, is what you create via your senses. Kind of. That’s how I interpreted the theory anyway. It made me think that there is really no difference between what is “real” and what is real in my mind.
We went on a walk through the bush/rainforest/scrub/beach…. And I was thinking of how sad it is that fairies don’t actually exist (it was fairytale like setting). Lightbulb. There’s no reason they can’t if the only thing that matters is that they exist in my mind.
Et Voila. My duck came to life.
As time went on, duck started developing personality quirks and clothing habits. He’s my own little Buddha following me around and supporting me in his own quiet way. Duck doesn’t speak much, but he has a certain way with expressions.
I once told someone upon my arrival in London that everyone should have their own imaginery friend. His response was that everyone would end up in an institution.
Duck obviously disagrees – because ever since, ducks in some form or other, have surprised me by popping up on unexpected occasions almost daily. I think he likes to let me know that they’re looking after me, whether I’m thinking about them or not. Every time I see one, I know I’m on the right track….
So if you see some random duck images pop up on this blog - you know why.