I saw a man douse himself in petrol and set himself alight at the border, whilst I played football with children, waiting for a vehicle to arrive. Other things as well. How they emerge in myself afterwards I have yet to know. Maybe they won’t.
Rick James Melling :: United Kingdom :: Age 23
I’m Rick. Masters graduate as of 2015, worked a number of kitchen jobs since the age of 16, hang around bars most of the time back home …
Why did you come here ? I came here on the back of volunteering in Calais where I helped to coordinate distributions of clothes and bedding. Calais was dead for me in a number of ways and a chance to move away and start a fresh project flew by, so i jumped on it.
When did you Arrive and for how long ? Arrived around 4th March, 2016 . I knew next to nothing about Idomeni before arriving – I knewthere were around 15,000 people stuck at a closed border in the rain – that we were to stop there to drop supplies on the way to the islands – not that we would stay and start all of this … I never meant to do this. It all happened by accident really … how absurd… . Here indefinitely.
Did u come alone or with friends? Came with other restless spirits from voluntary work in the Calais Jungle. We knew each other then, we are friends now.
What reactions did you get from family and friends before coming? I believe my family and friends are proud, (I hope) they miss me … I don’t know, I haven’t been able to look any of them in the eye properly yet since I left this time.
I find often I can’t remember a lot of people’s names, people I should remember from home. That defines something about it, good and bad, I think.
What did you learn new about life and people? There’s a lot to say there but I think i’ll leave it at that. I’ve learnt better how to deal with people, and how not to become too attached to them. I think we all both kill and love with different sides of ourselves, constantly.
An influential / defining moment you had ? I saw a man douse himself in petrol and set himself alight at the border, whilst I played football with children, waiting for a vehicle to arrive. Other things as well. How they emerge in myself afterwards I have yet to know. Maybe they won’t.
Do you remember anyone in particular among refugees or volunteers? Too many to list and do justice… Paul, Barry, Luke, Chris. Mustafa, Karim, Veon, Eido, Abdullah. Amanda, Nora. Amongst others. Top of my head.
What are you taking with you back home ?
And who says i’m going back home?