Bill Shorten’s Wife Chloe Literally Caught A Small Boy Falling Out Of A Tree
While her husband Bill Shorten continues on the campaign trail, shaking hands and making speeches, Chloe Shorten is the silent hero.
It's another carefully choreographed sideshow, this time at a golf club in the plum suburb of Bulimba on Brisbane's snaking river.
There's an Easter egg hunt underway and a giant bunny in wait that will dash into view on cue. The seat of Griffith used to belong to Kevin Rudd, so it's accustomed to theatrics, but the hero of the story isn't the former Prime Minister, nor the man who wants to be the next one. It's his wife.
Chloe Shorten's motherly instincts are about to save the day.
Five-year-old Riley, doesn't yet know the person the polls predict will most most likely be the next First Lady, is also about to save him from injury -- maybe a broken bone or two.
It rained yesterday -- not the miserly British stuff, but the heavy Queensland kind. Today the grass is warm and wet. The humidity is stuffy but not stifling, so it's shorts and shirt kind'a weather.
A small distance away the little man in his blue Superman shirt climbs a tree. It's not difficult to imagine the fun he's having amongst the swarming crowd and noise. Imagining scenarios and playing games. Then he slips. Before he knows it, he's horizontal to the ground and falling. Fast. Too fast. He panics. Later he'll cry.
Enter Chloe Shorten who has for some reason, drifted from the pack and happened upon the tree. Instinctively she thrusts her hands out and catches Riley's neck and head as he tumbles. "The important parts" we later joke. The bits that matter. Somehow, as all good mothers do, she holds onto him. It's an ugly catch but a catch none the same, minimising the injuries to a grazed leg, some blood and a band-aid.
He was wearing sandals, she explains to me as we navigate the puddles back to the car. In the wet, "they slip", she says knowingly.
I put a question to her husband about the incident as he climbs into the van, an incident precious few other than Riley and his mother know has happened.
"I'm batting above my average," he says. Shorten has come to lean on his leading lady. He isn't surprised.
Other journos soon hear about the tumble. We ask around but no one has any pictures. In this game of political happen-chance, if you don't have 'vision', you don't have a story.
Riley though knows.
The boy in the Superman shirt has learned first hand, not all heroes wear capes -- but mothers and wives should. It's not just their partners who need them. We all do, especially to light up a long campaign.