Dear Chris

I am floored.

I am reeling.

What happened?

Remember Stevie? Remember how disturbed I’d been as witness to him dressed as Stevie Nicks? He was truly frightening in drag; blond wig and the fawn swede high-heeled boots he was so proud of. He’d been having a bad night until he blew a line of coke in the toilets at the Queen's Ball. 

We talked a lot about Stevie that night and how he died. Remember we had been thrown by his calculated subterfuge.  We thought his fog had lifted and he was pursuing his holiday planning with the manic fervour he was known for.

He never intended to travel.

We were only just talking about your holidays too. It had been so hard for you caring for, and then losing your folks, running your businesses, your farm, and just getting on.  You seemed in a good place. Like for the first time in a long time, you were doing something for you.

You made such a tremendous mark in your time here. You know how much I respected your skills.  You were always so generous with your advice and encouragement.
Thank you for the loan of those cake containers! How on earth would I have transported one hundred fancy cupcakes to Amy and Andy’s wedding without you!  And you were so complimentary about the pretty cake I saved for you. I was embarrassed.

OMG, your raspberry clouds! Richard and I were totally addicted to those. And when you took them off the menu you offered to make us our own personal supply! I just couldn't.

I remember setting you up big time. There we were talking food and restaurants as was our want.  I loaded up that conversation and you fell right in and told me what you REALLY thought of a few of Hobart’s finer restaurants. Hey I agreed with you. But I did take advantage of your drunkenness.

Your foodie legacy in Hobart: Mit Zitrone will never be forgotten, Choux Shop and of course, Jackman.

I went passed my local today and I just couldn’t believe it was business as usual. I couldn’t bear to see people in there going about things as normal.
Put the closed sign up. Leave the ovens turned off. Lay flowers at the door.

I hate this is another casualty for the LGBTI community. And I’m thinking about the notion of PRIDE and tolerance, and how far we have to go.
And I’m thinking that it’s another loss to our Aboriginal community too.

I’m angry.

I’m sad.

I am so sorry.

Your amazing talent, generosity and humour, I will greatly miss.

Yours, Skye xxx

Hey if you need to talk to someone:
Working it out for LGBTI community, family and friends
Beyond Blue for mental health support
Mental Health Services Hotline Tasmania