The house in Millwrights Walk (in Hemel Hempstead, UK) was a very special house. It was where Shivon grew up for ten years so at least she had some kind of stability in her life. In comparison to my own upbringing, when I was Shivon’s age, the longest I’d stayed at any given place was a maximum of two years.
It was a very special house in the fact that our lives seemed settled before interference from extended family members in New Zealand, although the friction with the ex-family in Hemel Hempstead was never ending. The neighbour who’d repeatedly told me to “fuck off back to your own country” and kicked the soccer ball against the house and against Shivon’s head for fun had moved and things seemed to be working out for the better.
I spent a lot of time in the sanctuary of my award winning Chelsea Garden from the Chelsea Garden Show that I’d won. It was a very bio diverse garden full of flora and fauna including pillars. Stephen Anderton (2010) writes:
“Michelle Johnstone has her favourites in her award-winning garden. “There are alliums, and my trees and my ferns, and those little yellow things with wings. I’m getting an education here,” says the winner of the Times competition to have the £20,000 Chelsea show garden – the Bradstone Biodiversity Garden designed by Paul Hervey-Brookes – installed in her home. There were hundreds of entrants in the competition; launched in March, to find the garden in the sorriest state, but the judges decided that Michelle’s was the most deserving.”
There was also a tree out the front where the top looked like the shape of the character ‘Mad Hatter’ from ‘Alice in Wonderland’. It was equipped with the hat and the feather poking out from the hat. I didn’t so much talk to the plants however I did nurture them the best I could and took pride in nurturing them. When it was all in bloom and green, the calming effects you get from a garden is like no other drug. My photo collection included pictures of ferns (representing New Zealand) and thistles (representing Scotland). It was a very private garden, a sanctuary, birds were a permanent fixture. Robins would get very friendly and come into the house.
During the 2012 London Olympics a couple of Chinooks flew over the house along with a few dozen private jets. It was very much a metaphor for ‘Star Wars’. The real deal vs. the land of make believe where money isn’t an issue. The deception ‘game’, where they (media and ‘friends’) portray fake as real and real as fake (thus ultimately leading to mass confusion) was very popular amongst celebrities and political figures etc.
When I was working on a television programme as an extra there happened to be an onset lawyer there. I asked him if they (tv/film industry, Hollywood, movie execs) care about who they rob and the answer was “no.” They do not care who they pillage. If the movie execs decide to make a movie about a massacre or catastrophic event the victim/s get no say in the matter and are ultimately discarded.
While I was in the process of writing a victim impact statement I included a little bit about the ‘Johnstone’ history such as Gilbert Johnstone and the connection with the Battle of Bannockburn. I don’t know much about the ‘Neil’ side of the family. All I know is our Dad worked in the RAAF. At the same time I found myself in a situation where people who worked on different ‘entertainment’ productions were attempting to portray something as being ‘real’ to their viewers. Working as an extra was a bit patronising as there’d be actors who attempted to portray real life victims but take the piss out of the victim in real life. When I was working as an extra on ‘Mr Selfridge’ the makeup lady said of the actors “some of them are like Gods.”
Being bullied wasn’t anything ‘new’. When I was younger it became part of everyday life. I had also been on the receiving end of bullies throughout adult life as well. Both Russell and I were abused as kids - bullied to the extent of cowering every time the bellow of our mother’s voice when she would go into one. We weren’t allowed in the house very much therefore spent most of our time outside, playing sport and away from the house. It had its bonus’ being away from the house rather than in it. I remember one morning mum woke us up to tell us that the NASA space shuttle blew up (in 1986, I was 12). I remember watching it on the television and being slightly amused by the ‘need another seven astronauts’ jokes afterwards.
I was just three years old when Elvis Presley died. I remember the funeral they had for Elvis. They had a statue in a tree and everyone was expressing grief by crying and wailing. I was three years old. I thought having a statue in a tree was slightly odd; our mother was a fan of Elvis and had one of his books.
The only trouble with being so young and easily exploitable with a mother that always wanted no kids in the house (out of sight and out of mind) is that it paves the way for predators. We went to David’s house when we got kicked out of mum’s house. Our mother decided for Justin to live with David at a young age. Even though he was our half brother he went to live with his dad and never lived with us again and thus the separation commenced. By separation there was even a point where our mother wouldn’t let Justin in the house. He had done nothing wrong except want to know his mother. There were many times that our mother wouldn’t let Russell or me in the house either. When we turned 13 that was it - we were apparently old enough to fend for ourselves. When Russell turned 13 all his stuff was shoved into a black bin liner and thrown out of the house. David Barr picked him up, so there was: Justin, Russell, Timothy, Matthew and Jonathan. Timothy and Matthew didn’t do much. Jonathan was a jockey and Russell started working as a stable hand.
The nightmare situation was that David had a paedophile friend called ‘Snow’. I was sexually abused in an environment where it was passed off as ‘normal’ and ‘normal’ to be invited to sit on someone’s lap and feel an erection. I was between six and eight years old when that happened, right under our mother’s nose. I did try and tell her but it caused more resentment and it turned into a victim blaming session along with a lecture “What are you doing to your mother?” in an angry tone when I hadn’t done anything wrong. I remember sitting in silence watching the Atari Tennis game, pretending to be totally engrossed watching two bars slide up and down the tele in the hope that nobody would call me.
If our father was ‘around’ we would’ve been shipped off a long time ago. When our mother found out that our father was already married and had a family living in Australia it paved the way for a childhood full of resentment and bitterness. We were bastard kids and being born out of wedlock made things even worse as it was not the ‘done thing’ to do back in those days as it was classed as a sin and frowned upon.
Addressing the reason why Russell changed his name from ‘Johnstone’ to ‘Neil’, the ‘family’ stabbed him in the back and discarded him. I decided one day that I wanted to see my brother so I biked all the way to Ohai from Invercargill. It was a long bike trip to Ohai to see Russell, it took me all day to get there. Years later, when I was staying with foster parents (who were very religious) in Nightcaps (just down the road from Ohai), they had guests from Canada who spoke in ‘tongues’ (who were also very religious). The religious lady from Canada asked me to sit down while she talked to ‘God’. I sat there and listened to her talk gibberish. Afterwards she declared that I am a ‘lighthouse’ and drew a picture of a lighthouse and gave me a white bible.
Upon learning about the ‘frank’ attitude from Trounson as well as the amount of abuse I was receiving on social media mixed with silence (that amounts to psychological torture) combined with the very rude, unprofessional and appalling manner I was ‘dealt’ with by the New Zealand government and its agencies – it was just off the grid evil. I’d said on twitter that I’d paid £17k for someone to go and kill Trounson. All I was getting was abuse, trolled and blocked and was even called a ‘troll’ and ‘spam’. I put one post on an expat website forum and had an email in return saying that I was illiterate spam and was banned ‘forever’. My bank details were checked and Seth Macfarlane wrote “You can find someone anywhere in the world and send someone to kill them” in a speech at Harvard University. Whether it was just a coincidence that that happened roundabout the same time I was talking about it and not getting any feedback is another matter. Hollywood is out for revenge in regards to the copyright war and there is also a debate regarding religion and the subject of ‘life after death’. The copyright case is almost like a declaration of war between Hollywood and the random people who download the odd YouTube video/s. At that same time there was also decapitated head images of John Key (NZ PM) and Judith Collins (NZ Justice Minister) made by people in New Zealand who had placed the images strategically by a guillotine.
Also residing in New Zealand is a guy called Kim Dotcom (German national) who is wanted by the US on piracy charges. He started up his own political party. So not only were there effigies of politicians’ decapitated heads there were also effigies of John Key getting burnt at the stake as well as National Party billboards defaced with Nazi symbols.
Hamish McNeilly sent out a tweet attaching a picture of John Key that had been defaced with Nazi slogans stating “Another day in Dunedin, another Nazi picture” or something along those lines.
There was an awful lot of Nazi marketing. ‘88’ had been sprayed onto Jewish headstones in New Zealand. Manchester United also had a Nazi themed marketing campaign (which was merely considered as an ‘oversight’ and apparently had no intentions of being ‘offensive’). Apparently the Manchester United ‘campaign’ was all to do with the ‘New World Order’. There was also a fitness campaign from Virgin (Richard Branson’s business) with ’88’ and ‘freedom’ in the same marketing slogan and of course ‘88’ is the speed that the DeLorean must attain to achieve time travel in the movie ‘Back to the Future’. The slogan on the gates of Auschwitz reads ‘Work sets you free’.
There is a certain percentage of English that feel that the St George’s cross is a racist symbol. Breivik had used that particular symbol as an excuse to slaughter and also used the Knights Templar which is the symbol of the cross in order to resemble the battle of ‘The Crusade vs The Jihad’.
It was a case of bad timing that the World Trade Centre memorial resembled Sir Peter Jackson’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ ring. It paved the way for ‘Jihaddies’ to produce a recruitment video using the ‘ring of fire’ (hula-hoop that was set on fire) as a prop.
I did a small amount of research regarding science and religion. There is a ‘religious’ picture called the ‘Heavenly Trinity’ joined to the ‘Earthly Trinity’ through the Incarnation of the Son by Murillo in c. 1677 (Wikipedia, 2017). It depicts a little girl standing on what looks to be a tree stump with a woman and a man beside her. She is looking up and above her is a big man with a beard and also what appears to be a dove. The impression of the picture is that she is about to take a quantum leap. Also the artwork in Churches includes animals as well as St George. There is an array of images/artwork such as birds, owls, letter writing ‘angels’ etc and in the Vatican there is artwork of a Dove flying out from what can only be described as the centre of the sun.
Christchurch cathedral came down in the earthquake however the monument that was inspired by a drawing depicting the woman of war with a cross and sword remains.
While delving into the world of quantum physics and realities within realities, Einstein (Wikipedia, 2016) created the quantum theory of light (in 1905). The idea that light exists as tiny packets, or particles, which he called photons. As far as I know no one has progressed on this theory since. It led me to Google things called ‘auras’ which people say are different coloured lights around a person.
If someone asked me if there is a ‘God’, I would probably just shrug my shoulders as I do believe it is a big universe - one of many. We’d be pretty naive to think that there’s nothing else ‘out there’. I also believe in a certain scientific spiritualism. Einstein (Coyne, Jerry. 2013) even said you can’t have one without the other: “Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.”
Einstein called himself an agnostic (a view that certain metaphysical claims such as the existence of God or the supernatural are unknown and perhaps unknowable) while disassociating himself from the label atheist (absence of belief).
Say, for example - you see an unknown light that seems so close but almost transparent that look like little balls and resemble little ‘orbs’; a light so fast it beats quantum mechanics and if you see this light it means something. I saw a purple and yellow ‘orb’. I rubbed my eyes as I didn’t know if there was something wrong with my eyes. These little balls of light or ‘mysterious’ lights are known as ‘auras’. There is a vast amount of research on them. Information on Google suggests that yellow means ‘warning’ and purple interprets as ‘information’.
Much like the Aurora which is an incredible light show caused by collisions of electrically charged particles, auras generate a large magnetic energy field that allegedly can be sensed, felt and even seen around the physical body. Some people refer to it ‘instinct’. Apparently you do not need to be psychic to feel or ‘read’ an aura. Closely combine instinct with body language and you might well get the same ‘reading’ as if you were ‘reading’ someone’s aura. However it has been said that when ‘aura reading’ a person, the ‘reading’ can provide insight into the spiritual, emotional and physical aspects of the individual.
Every alien movie I’ve seen the aliens never physically speak to each other and in some movies they have fantastic mind reading capabilities. Is there such a thing as ‘clairvoyant’, are there really ‘psychics’? If there are - how come there are so many murders and no one knows what’s going on in the world today? Preventative measures like the ‘Minority Report’ movie where they are able to predict the next act of violence and prevent it from occurring. Why not? There are after all such things as ‘Paranormal experts’, ‘Ghost Hunters’ and the Police have been known to seek help of a clairvoyant from time to time. There is also a thing called ‘common sense’ although not many people know what it is, it remains a mystery.
Russell was a Sagittarius, I am a Gemini. His astrological sign is the archer, mine is the twins. As far as astrology compatibility is concerned I have no idea whether we were destined to have a fraught relationship as we did fight like cat and dog but still enjoyed a good giggle. Like the time when Russell made a sound effect tape of our step father on the toilet using real explosion noises. We used to take ages doing the dishes due to the amount of time we spent mucking about. We’d often get told off for there being too many soap suds up in the air.
When the Curiosity Rover landed on Mars all the nerdy people celebrated while sceptics questioned the authenticity of the landing. It came with truckloads of ‘conspiracy’ theories about what they had found on Mars. Having been an extra on ‘JC’ (‘John Carter of Mars’) and dressed up in Martian gear while pretending to be on the distant planet for a Disney movie - the actual real life Mars exploration and landing was exciting and funny at the same time because I had already been to Mars and am safely back on Earth.
The Mars landing seemed like the beginning of the ‘Transformers’ movie where big giant aliens landed on a planet and it was televised globally. The movie starts with an image of a transformer type figure, then the aliens come to Earth to defend against the attack of the ‘Decepticons’ – it’s pretty much how Curiosity’s exploration to Mars began with the image of a transformer head.
There have been many conspiracy theories about the Mars landing and the redundant items that they had supposedly found. They had found a lot of mysterious objects on Mars such as a kiwi. Stacey Kirk (2012) writes:
“There aren't many places intrepid Kiwi travellers haven't set foot on in this world and now they're moving on to others.
A New Zealander following the travels of NASA's Mars rover Curiosity has unearthed possible evidence of a Kiwi hiding on the red planet.
Ned Walker, a New Zealander living in Australia, said he was surprised at the find, but it was unmistakable.
"I have a huge interest in the Mars Curiosity Rover and I like to look at the raw images NASA uploads onto its site each day from the rover's cameras.
‘‘I was amazed to find in today's raw images what can only be described a Kiwi."
Walker thought the "monumental find", would be of interest to all New Zealanders.
The picture shows a shadow cast by a Martian rock that looks like the very distinctive native New Zealand bird.
The rover Curiosity landed on Mars in August so has only just started beaming images from the surface back to Earth.
Its older brother, Opportunity, has been on the planet since 2004.”
Other objects have been found such as a spaceship and possibly a pyramid and even a spoon. There are lots of movies about Mars, all fiction, such as: ‘Mars Attacks’, ‘Total Recall’ and of course ‘John Carter of Mars’. There is even a fatwa on Mars due to it being a suicide mission if you choose to visit. There is also a project called ‘Mars One’ and their ‘mission’ is to establish the first human settlement on Mars which presumably would generate a lot of clashing. The possibility of returning to Earth in one piece or at all is seemingly very slim.
It was such a ‘best of both worlds’ feeling having participated as an extra in a Disney movie then seeing the real castle. Being an extra in ‘John Carter of Mars’ and there being a real Mars landing. All this talk of space, intergalactic travel and reaching for infinity and beyond was sending the nerds into hysteria.
During the Mars landing a town called Glenelg in Scotland twinned itself with Mars and it became a galactic style celebration. Lots of astrological/astronomy events were taking place and the fascination of intergalactic travel was pushed to the forefront of most news bulletins and newspaper publications. In the BBC (2012):
“The small Scottish community of Glenelg has held a ceremony to twin itself with its namesake on Mars. Glenelg on Mars takes its name from a particular rock found in the Northwest Territories.
Emma MacLean (BBC), a twinning ceremony organiser, said the link with the NASA mission and the Red Planet was a good way of keeping the community “healthy and vibrant”. She said: “Small communities such as ours are always looking for ways to promote the wide variety of attractions that our community has. The arrival of the Mars rover at Glenelg will be used to showcase to the international astronomy community the quality of the dark skies we have in Glenelg and Arnisdale. With so little light pollution the skies above are truly spectacular, especially at the moment with the Northern Lights activity.”
Russell had a tattoo of a sword and a snake which he got done in Rattray Street, Dunedin. Same place where I got the heart with wings. I also have another tattoo on my shoulder. It is the image of the High Priestess taken from a tarot deck. Dressed in white she is standing beside what appears to be a wishing well holding a white ‘orb’ shining light, a swan is beside her and Stonehenge is in the background.
Stonehenge (Wikipedia, 2016) has been the subject of many theories about its origin, ranging from the academic worlds of archaeology to explanations from mythology and the paranormal. Although there has been a lot of research no one really knows why it was built. The first academic to survey and attempt to understand the monument was made around 1640 by John Aubrey. He declared that Stonehenge was the work of druids while other early historians were influenced by supernatural folktales in their explanations. Some legends held that Merlin had a giant build the structure for him or that he magically transported it from Mount Killaraus in Ireland, while others held the Devil responsible and possibly other stuff of science fiction.
If I was to utilise science fiction with the esoteric for an option of using computer games for ‘developmental and research purposes’ in relation to ‘saving the world’ my avatar would be Dr. Liara T’Soni (Mass Effect Wiki, 2016). She is from the game ‘Mass Effect’. What strikes me about Liara is that she is a scientist who happens to live in outer space. She seems very mystical and is all about saving civilisation. If you were to create a video game using all three games; ‘Assassin’s Creed’, ‘Mass Effect’ and ‘Call Of Duty: Ghosts’ in order to save the Earth from intergalactic wars and threats - it’d be a best seller.
When extremely traumatic events occur it seems like it’s not real. The expression ‘it was like something out of a movie’ is often used to describe the incident/s. Sometimes a reference of being similar to a particular movie is used as a way to allow others to ‘relate’ to the carnage. The initial shock leaves you emotionally frozen at the time and your brain somehow can’t comprehend the level of extreme violence that is before you, firsthand. People react to carnage in different ways, I froze – froze to the point of not being able to speak or scream.
The conspiracies and propaganda surrounding Mars was almost like the conspiracy theories/propaganda surrounding the ‘secret’ Nazi base in Antarctica.
Back in the days of Hitler it was rumoured that the Nazis headed to Antarctica. It was a Russian conspiracy/propaganda campaign saying that apparently the Nazi base in Antarctica had alien visitors. At one point Admiral Byrd supposedly claimed to have encountered aliens who warned him about nuclear weapons before they dropped the atomic bomb.
New Zealand’s first taste of terrorism was the blowing up of the Rainbow Warrior that resulted in the death of a camera guy. Greenpeace originally started in New Zealand and later morphed into a discriminatory machine where they seemed to have forgotten the very reason they started and have ventured into a profiteering and political organisation. At the time of the blowing up of the Rainbow Warrior, there was a thing in New Zealand where they were all about boycotting the French. The rift between the French and New Zealand was left to simmer for many years.
We (Shivon and I) had just left Tahiti before they started smashing up the airport at the beginning of the French Moruroa Atoll protests about the nuclear testing. It was on the ‘World’s Worst Riots’ programme - there was no airport left.
It took place in 1995 when Shivon was three months old. We were on our way to the UK. Tahiti is normally one of the most untroubled island paradises; it was total shock to see the footage on TV.
France had exploded a test nuclear weapon in Moruroa Atoll in French Polynesia and everyone found themselves running to escape French tear gas and stun grenades. For twelve hours they bombarded the international airport at Papeete (Tahiti’s main town) with stones and Molotov cocktails, setting fire to the terminal and torching cars.
The French also had its hand in the sinking of Greenpeace’s Rainbow Warrior codenamed ‘Operation Satanique’ (Wikipedia, 2016) which was a bombing operation by the ‘action’ branch of the French foreign intelligence service. It was a long time ago, back in 1985. The French agents blew up the Rainbow Warrior before it could protest about the French nuclear testing in Moruroa Atoll.
The French denied responsibility at first; however the French assassins/agents were caught, pleaded guilty and got 10 years. They only served two where they were confined to the French island of Hao before being freed by the French government.
‘Operation Satanique’ was a public relations disaster. France, being an ally of New Zealand, denied involvement and joined in condemning of what is described as a terrorist act. It was one of New Zealand’s largest investigations.
Seeing the remnants of the Moruroa Atoll riots in Tahiti when they trashed the airport with bulldozers and set fire to the terminal etc was very shocking - knowing that we’d missed it within the space of less than a couple of hours.
The French are known to be very fiery passionate people and have often clashed with ‘she’ll be right it’s not that big of a deal’ laidback New Zealander’s. New Zealand as a country has been wiped off so many maps and doesn’t appear with the big picture of the world. They are ahead of time but so backward it’s a contradiction. Tim Shadbolt (appeared in the movie ‘The World’s Fastest Indian’, he’s only Mayor because he was in a movie once) is still Mayor of Invercargill. He had recently spent an obscene amount of money on a self portrait and acquired dodgy lights from China for the Christmas street decorations. Invercargill: a town that hasn’t really progressed in any way shape or form and was even more backward, conniving and scheming as the days when I left it behind. It turned out Uncle Joe attempted to punch Tim Shadbolt in a meeting once which I find rather comical as I haven’t spoken to Uncle Joe since I was last in Christchurch (the whole kidnapping trip). I’ve never met Tim Shadbolt but I have been on set with Sir Anthony Hopkins and Bruce Willis (on the set of the movie ‘Red 2’). Sir Anthony Hopkins played the role of Burt Munro in ‘The World’s Fastest Indian’.
Meanwhile the reason why I happened to be in England... the ex-husband still has Dutch the dog from when they dognapped him.
The ex-husband and I were married in Invercargill Rose Gardens at Queen’s Park. Fiona was there - who I hadn’t spoken to for many years. The conversation with Fiona began in 2009 over Facebook. I had a completely different life in the UK while she was over in New Zealand (Dunedin) where Trounson is/was. She was there at the murder trial and she was there when I was attacked but developed ‘selective amnesia’ in recalling my own traumatic events that occurred in 1990 (Dunedin). The focus seemed to be always on herself or playing Farmville 24/7. It’s almost like having a double life with shit going on in New Zealand as well as in the UK.
When I was much younger Princess of Wales & Prince Charles did their tour of New Zealand. We all went down to the Queens Park Gardens to see Princess Diana. Both Princess Diana and Einstein have memorable front pages. Einstein was the cover of Time Magazine with ‘Person of the Century’ and Princess Diana; although she had many front pages the one that I like is on the front page of People magazine. The Sun newspaper requested to know where the Queen was upon national mourning of the death of Princess Diana. The headlines read ‘The Long Goodbye’ along with ‘Where is our Queen?’ Apparently Dodi gave Diana a £130,000 ring on the day they died. The divorce between me and Andy in England began when Princess Diana died.
Back to the present day and on the other side of the globe in the UK - I got tickets to go to the premiere of ‘John Carter of Mars’ as I’d won a competition - so off we went. Shivon and I trotted off to the premiere of a movie that I’d been an extra in. I thought it was hilarious, to Shivon however, who was the ever moody stroppy teenager - I was the embarrassing mum.
There was a scene where I did see myself dressed as a Martian, quite the jaw-dropper as I wasn’t expecting to recognise myself on the big screen. I don’t think Shivon noticed and I didn’t say anything to her. Getting a photo with Mark Strong on the red carpet was funny. I didn’t expect him to remember me or anything - it was just that I was ‘just an extra’ who got complimentary tickets from Disney to go to the premiere – it was completely random and funny. On the set of ‘John Carter of Mars’ I had to giggle to myself as when Mark Strong and Taylor Kitsch walked past all I thought of at the time was the movie ‘Madagascar’ and the quote ‘Bring me my nuts on a silver platter’.
I was an extra on a few movies that year. They included ‘I give it a year’ (starring Minnie Driver and ‘Neil’ off ‘The Young Ones’) and also a movie called ‘Belle’ starring the guy off ‘RocknRolla’ (the guy who falls out of his chair when he discovers the ‘lucky painting’ is missing). I thought it was funny to be stood next to another actor from the movie ‘RocknRolla’ just because I’d pointed at Mark Strong and blurted out ‘RocknRolla’ on the set of ‘John Carter of Mars’.
‘Belle’ was on location at the Oxford University and we were camped out in the Sheldonian theatre (Gadd, Ian. 2013) admiring the painted ceiling entitled ‘Truth Decending upon the Arts and Sciences’. It was designed by Christopher Wren, completed in Whitehall and shipped to Oxford by barge. The building was named after Gilbert Sheldon, chancellor of the University at the time and the project’s main financial backer. The movie ‘Belle’ was inspired from a picture and ‘Harry Potter’ was filmed in the same area. The ceiling looked to be little cherubs flying around with a very nasty looking creature that had a snake at the bottom. At the top was a little cherub sitting on a cloud with the sun behind him.
I was also an extra on ‘James Bond: Skyfall’. It is nearly every ‘Bond’ fan’s dream to be an extra but for me - as far as reaching for stardom it’s a tricky situation. Just a few days before filming ‘Skyfall’ – due to the extreme trauma of the only response/s on social media being abuse, laughed at or blatantly purposely ignored - I collapsed. Shivon was at her dad’s for the weekend. I had a vivid dream that I was scooped up but I couldn’t see the guys face. In the dream my body was lifeless and it was like I’d died.
I woke up in the morning exhausted; all my energy had been zapped. My eye was bloodshot red and I was due to work as an extra on ‘Skyfall’. One of the other extras said “looks like a bad case of conjunctivitis.” I remember sitting on the underground stairs in London and Daniel Craig walked up past me; I leaned to the side thinking ‘great, famous people’. One of the takes Daniel Craig was leaping down the escalators with his stunt double. Rocky from ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ was also working on ‘Skyfall’.
Over in New Zealand and around the same time, John Key reported to have had ‘an out of body experience’ and the teenagers who sprayed ‘88’ onto Jewish headstones in Auckland appeared in court. Brendan Manning (2012) writes:
“More than 20 graves, all more than 125 years old, were vandalised with black spray-paint between Thursday night and Friday morning.
Fourteen had large black swastikas sprayed on them. Another two had "f*** Israel" and "don't f*** with us" scrawled on them.
The Israeli Embassy in Wellington condemned "the vile desecration".
"Sixty seven years after the liberation of the Jewish people from the death camps and ghettoes of Europe, expressions of blind hatred for Jews and for the sole Jewish state resurface," it said in a statement.
"This is clearly the action of a handful of vandals, motivated by hatred and ignorance, who certainly do not represent the opinion of New Zealanders.
"We trust in New Zealand's law enforcement agencies to find the vandals and bring them to justice."
The attack came as official’s planned tighter security at the cemetery on the corner of Symonds St and Karangahape Rd.
Edward Bennett from the K Rd Business Association said headstones were pushed over regularly.
New Zealand Jewish Council president Stephen Goodman said there were moves to install a $250,000 security fence around the cemetery, which has long been popular with vagrants.
Mr Goodman said it was incredibly disappointing such an attack could occur in New Zealand.
"Normally these sort of attacks come after some international incident that provokes it, but I can think of nothing."
Samuel Altschul, senior rabbi from the Auckland Hebrew Congregation, said the incident was "very alarming".
"It's cowardly to attack the dead. It's a very un-Kiwi thing to do and it's most saddening. Unfortunately it happens quite frequently."
Rabbi Altschul said a new grave was last dug at the cemetery in 1886.
"Those are the people who helped found Auckland. Those were founding fathers."
Police are reviewing footage from a nearby security camera.
Mr Goodman said he had "more hope than expectation" it would yield any clues as to who was behind the attack.
Auckland Council civic contractor John Stevenson said the graffiti could be removed relatively easily from the newer marble headstones, but a specialist stonemason was required to remove it from the older "more sensitive" headstones.
Mayor Len Brown said the attack on a special part of old Auckland was abhorrent.
"This kind of vandalism has no place in our city. My thanks to council staff for their response. The council and the local board are taking steps to improve the environment in this cemetery and prevent further such attacks."
The last time a similar anti-Semitic attack occurred in New Zealand was in August 2004, when a Jewish prayer house was burnt down and 92 headstones were smashed in the Jewish section of Wellington's Makara Cemetery.”
In the Times of Israel (2012):
“New Zealand Jews invite grave vandal to Shabbat dinner”
Judge praises ‘extraordinary’ willingness of community to help pay for education of teenager who painted swastikas in cemetery
DNEY (JTA) – A New Zealand man who admitted to desecrating Jewish graves at a historic cemetery in Auckland avoided prison.
Robert Moulden, 19, was sentenced in Auckland District Court Wednesday to 320 hours of community service. He also was ordered to pay about $2,500 in reparations.
Moulden pleaded guilty to a charge of wilful damage in November for scrawling anti-Semitic graffiti on the graves. Another man, also accused of desecrating the cemetery, is fighting the charges.
During the sentencing, Judge Russell Collins said the community service should include work with Auckland Council’s graffiti team.
More than a dozen headstones in the Jewish quarter of the Symonds St. Cemetery were vandalized on Oct. 19 with swastikas, the numbers 88 – code for “Heil Hitler” — and anti-Israeli slogans.
The Jewish community offered restorative justice with Moulden. One family invited him for Shabbat dinner, and others offered financial assistance for his education.
“To your credit, you were willing to engage with the Jewish community and a more extraordinary outcome is the forgiving nature of the members of the Jewish community,” Collins said. “Their forgiveness of you needs to be admired considering how wounding and distressing your actions were.”
The Auckland Council has spent about $10,000 on trying to repair the vandalism, but some is irreparable, according to local media, with the damage estimated to cost some $23,000.”
His friend Christian Landmark was ordered to leave New Zealand (Stuff, 2012):
“A man who desecrated Jewish graves in Auckland with swastikas and racist slogans has been ordered to leave the country.
Christian Landmark, 20, an Englishman on a holiday visa, supplied the spray can and accompanied his friend Robert Moulden when they defaced graves in the Jewish Quarter of the Symonds St Cemetery on October 19, 2012.
Landmark later implicated his co-accused to police then tried to sell pictures of his friend to TV news.
Moulden pleaded guilty in November but Landmark tried unsuccessfully to defend the charge.
He was found guilty by Judge Russell Collins who said he found the fact that Landmark had tried to profit from the crime as a "serious aggravating factor".
At sentencing yesterday, Landmark was not jailed but was told he had to turn back up at court in August with a plane ticket and $3000 for reparations.
He was also ordered to undertake some voluntary community work.
In his judgement, the judge pointed out a telling text exchange between Landmark and a friend.
The friend texted "Saw your handy work on the filthy Jew cemetery g it made the news" to which Landmark replied "lmfao which news lol". His reply amounted to him adopting the statement the friend had made, the judge said.
Landmark's lawyer Tudor Clee had argued that the prosecution's case rested entirely on the evidence of Moulden whose story changed a number of times.
Moulden said he did not paint all the gravestones so he assumed Landmark had done some of them.
Crown prosecutor Catherine Gisler said whether Landmark sprayed any paint was beside the point as he and Moulden had formed a "common purpose" which was enough to convict him of being a party to the offence.
The judge said Moulden's evidence was not entirely reliable but he struck him as someone who was trying to minimise the involvement of others. However, "he was not prepared to accept it was he and he alone".
Landmark's police interview was played during the trial in which he said he had "no beliefs" and that he "wasn't anti-Semitic".
However, in text messages presented in court he said to a friend: "I agree but f... niggers and Maoris though. They should die."
A defence witness, Nick Rosewarne, said he was present when Moulden bragged about defacing the graves the night before the night in question.
He also said Moulden texted him on Thursday and warned him not to come to court.
The judge said he found it "utterly impossible" that the graffiti could have been there for a day - in plain view in central Auckland - without being reported.
Accordingly he found it was committed on the night of the 18th to 19th of October when Landmark was there with
The judge said Landmark's police interview showed him for half an hour delivering a "complete lie" in a "calm, articulate and measured way".
When confronted with a contrary witness account, without changing tone, Landmark asked to restart the interview then implicated his friend entirely.
In the interview Landmark admitted making up the email address firstname.lastname@example.org and trying to sell the photos of Moulden to TV3.
Judge Collins said the offending was at the very top end of the range.
His case was not like Moulden's who pleaded guilty early on, attended restorative justice and did not seek to profit from his crime.
Meanwhile on twitter, all the feedback I was getting back was either very antagonistic, patronising and/or abuse. I got tweeted by Hamish McNeilly, he was interrupted by another twitter user, the replies from Hamish McNeilly were:
@mexenaj @southernscoop wow Hamish this is one disturbed person that you are tweeting with!!!
@mexenaj you are talking about too many things. I don’t follow
@mexenaj it’s a conspiracy! Sssssssshhhhhhh
@mexenaj what’s that got to do with the last thing you tweeted?
@mexenaj so I wrote a parole report which is somehow connected with swastikas on Jewish graves in Auckland?
The conversation ends. A ‘journalist’ that is not only taking the piss out of the victim’s sister but he tends to forget about what he writes about. Hamish McNeilly’s response was to block me on twitter and pretend that I don’t exist.
In 2012 there was also a mass shooting that occurred inside a Century 16 movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado. The shooter was dressed as ‘The Joker’. He set off tear gas grenades and shot into the audience with multiple firearms during a midnight screening of the movie ‘The Dark Knight Rises’.
The shooting also led into the never-ending debate about gun control and the death penalty. The shooter pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity while prosecutors sought the death penalty. The visit they had from Christian Bale was incredibly contrived.
2012 was also the year Danny Boyle directed the opening ceremony of the London Olympics. I did a ‘promo’ ad at MacDonald’s. I technically fell out with Danny Boyle (as an extra and as a ‘fan’). I was working on a programme called ‘Mr Selfridge’ and the hair and makeup ladies were talking, somehow death got mentioned and she says “They all just turn into grains of sand”, I thought... ‘okay’. Then Danny Boyle was pictured in the Daily Mail pouring vast amounts of sand from a teapot into a cup as well as placing a lit light bulb above his head while talking about the security at the Olympics. Also while I was working on another ad at the George Lucas building I was ‘randomly’ asked “Which is worse, saying ‘we’re gunna kill it’ or saying ‘that’s so gay’?” Somehow it turned into a political debate in relation to gay marriage and the death penalty.
Also at the same time (sticking with the ‘RocknRolla’ theme), Gerard Butler and Bradley Cooper displayed a very animated show at the Tennis. Gerard struck one of his ‘300’ poses behind Alex Salmond (MP) which was also at the time of the Scotland referendum.
The first Christmas entirely on my own after Shivon went to her dad’s was probably the most relaxing Christmas I’d ever had. I didn’t have to do anything.
A couple of things run in the Hawgood genes, that is not talking about anything. Everything is ‘do this – or else’. Apparently when Andy’s mum (Margaret) divorced Andy’s dad (Berkeley) all Andy said was “Good.” Nothing else. They’ve not spoken about it since so when Andy came (with the Police) and got Shivon after I’d slapped her I wasn’t allowed to talk to him or Shivon and all he said was “You hit her, shut up.”
After they left I looked for Dutch (the dog I bought from a car boot sale, half Chihuahua and half Jack Russell. Taught him how to pray, he’s like a family member). I texted them to ask if they’ve got him and two days later I had a text back simply stating “We’ve got Dutch” - nothing else. They didn’t bring him back.
Shivon phoned a couple of days later and asked if she could spend four days at mine and three days at her dad’s. I said to her “Don’t you think now is a good time to go to your dad’s as I can no longer have any more aggravation around me.” She was 16. If it wasn’t for all the shit over in New Zealand, if it wasn’t for so many people sabotaging my life and just blatantly taking the piss and if it wasn’t for a spiteful, manipulative, revengeful ex-family everything would be tickety-boo.
I had an anxiety attack while filming a crime drama in London. A director from Manchester was making a crime drama series and this particular scene someone had died on the train platform. The AD was making a joke and one thing led to another and I had an anxiety/panic attack and left. It was the same place where ‘James Bond’s Skyfall’ was filmed. I couldn’t even roll a cigarette I was shaking that much.