Greg Flint was riding his motorbike home from work in Darwin on Friday, November 13, 2009.
- Car accident left Greg Flint in a coma for months
- Then he had to learn to walk, talk and remember
- Since then, he has dedicated his life to local environmental causes
He was a successful project manager who had traveled Australia and the world with his work.
âI don’t even remember coming home because it was such a routine day,â he said.
His BMW R100 Paris Dakar had given him so much freedom and reliability, but offered little protection against Friday the 13th stroke of luck.
A car suddenly turned and Greg T boned it.
The mechanical engineer woke up more than a month later in hospital, 2,500 miles away, in his hometown of Perth.
He had an open book pelvic fracture and serious head injuries.
There was a hole cut in his skull to relieve the pressure.
Greg had to relearn how to walk and talk for several months thereafter.
The hands of slow time
Greg has gone from a busy professional and personal life to many free hours.
âI had the chance to reflect,â he said.
As his life had just changed, he was also able to begin to control his destiny.
His thoughts led him to how humanity had changed since the middle of the last century.
âThis is when the population, emissions, manufacturing and production started to increase exponentially,â he said.
So Greg stopped activities “that involve blowing smoke.”
He’s cut back on theft, his car is being converted to electric, the roof of his house in Anula is covered in solar panels while batteries and inverters dominate his garage.
âI am a net sink of carbon dioxide,â he said.
“Please keep your cat out of my trap”
Greg is now 51 and connected with nature, inspired by learning about the fate of the rare atlas butterfly, Atlas of Attacus.
The giant butterfly and its habitat have all but disappeared from Darwin since Cyclone Tracy in 1974.
âI started to get involved with the Landcare group to [re-establish] this habitat, âhe said.
“It looks promising that the butterfly is about to return to live in Darwin.”
Greg walks 6 kilometers to volunteer with the Casuarina Coastal Reserve Landcare Group, where he primarily helps weed, replant and water the habitat with the goal of recreating a monsoon rainforest.
And, after the wildlife dwindled in his yard, he took control.
âFor a while I wondered why, until I saw a cat running around the garden with a lizard coming out of its mouth,â he said.
“If you kindly ask people to ‘Please keep your cat out of my trap’ they seem to respond a little better.”
He also maintains a native fruit garden where he grows grass and encourages wildlife.
âI notice a lot more activity at night,â he said.
And the reward came one afternoon when he saw a prairie melomys nibbling.
One of Greg’s favorite films is Christopher Nolan’s Memento, a 2000 film where the main character can’t form new memories and has short-term memory loss.
âIt reminds me of myself. I have to leave little notes on things,â he said.
âIn project management, you have to be organized so that everything moves.
âAt work, it frustrated me that people trust their memory so much.
“And they never seem to be so bothered when they forget things.
âFortunately, I already had this habit before all of this happened.
The risks of driving
When asked if riding motorcycles is inherently dangerous, Greg was philosophical.
âMost people in Australia sit in a steel box when they move around,â he said.
âWhen they collide. They are not seriously injured.
âAnyone who is not in a steel box is affected.
“And the general level of conduct [skills] in WA and NT is quite low because there are relatively few cars on the roads. “
The driver at fault pleaded guilty to driving without diligence and was fined $ 300, plus a victim charge of $ 40 and costs of $ 184.
“I don’t think he intended to do it. It was an accident.”