I'd just like to thank the people of Canowindra for the extreme and generous support Russell Hodge and I have felt since his accident two weeks ago.
On February 7, after a great day at Wyangala, Russ and I were heading home on our bikes when he came off the road.
He doesn't know and cannot remember what happened.
It was a near fatal accident and we are all glad Russell is still with us, especially me.
Russ is still in Liverpool Hospital and may be for a couple more weeks.
We are then hoping he may be moved closer to home.
With 11 broken ribs, a broken scapula and broken fibula it is a complicated process to get this one legged pirate out of bed (Russ is an above knee amputee).
As some of you may know, Russell's secret identity is Captain Barnacles from Capt Barnacles Harley and Sidecar tours.
His tourism business, which the town of Canowindra really embraced and supported, has come to a severe halt.
I have not joked yet about the Capt going down with the ship but it may be appropriate at some stage.
But seriously, the amount of love, prayers and concern shown to us and sent to Russ has been overwhelming.
From all our neighbours, to shop folk in the main street to mates far and wide we don't know how to thank everyone for both your thoughts and financial support.
This is what a small town spirit is all about.
It will be a long road of recovery for Russ and because he doesn't know how the accident occurred, extra tests are being done.
All to say he's not completely out of the woods yet but he is alive and starting to complain about hospital food and wanting to come home.
Apparently that's a good sign.
Again I must thank all the service people involved in the retrieval of Russ and bike from the accident site, the various ambulance crews, the police, and the helicopter crew and Dave from Cowra Towing (not sure how he got the bike out from where it was).
I'd also like to thank those who stopped and helped with directions and holding gear for the ambos.
The world is full of good people.
To finish with, I've written a poem which I wrote while sitting by Russell's bed.
I hope it may help you when things don't go the way you want them to:
The Dark Night of the Soul
When the night presses in, And all your worries fall like rain
When the darkness feels like mud, And you cry out in your pain
When things have gone quite wrong, And life deals you a bad hand
All events conspire to suffocate, How do you get back to dry land
You could drown in the despair, Or think all is just bad luck
You could give up on being thankful, In a down-ward spiral you are stuck
To me it seems so simple, To me it seems quite plain
There's only two ways to respond to life, Make it work or go insane
Being glum or sad or mad, Is important for a while
But it doesn't move you forward, and its really not my style
I'm sorry it be plain, And bold and blunt at best
But to get out of the deep pit, You need to pass a test
Can you look at life from above? Being thankful for all you have
Some call it wearing "Rose coloured glasses", But smelling roses ain't that bad
Every cloud does have a lining, Even if the storm is grey
Good can be found in most things, It's up to you to find the way
So from my heart I still am thankful, For good people far and wide
Who help to ease the journey, And help me swim against the tide
Also for me having a greater source, From where my hope is born
In the dark night of the soul, Helps me wait for the coming of the dawn.