It was around 8:30am Tuesday morning, Australian time, when the news managed to find us.
A homemade nail bomb had exploded in the foyer of Manchester Arena in Northern England as young people, mostly girls, exited an Ariana Grande concert.
The explosion could be felt by nearby residents who felt the walls and floors of their apartments shake.
Commuters at neighbouring Victoria station were suddenly blown off their feet, as they saw a flash of fire surge into the air.
Inside the arena, a nightmarish scene had unfolded – a vision entirely outside the parameters of imagination.
There were ear-piercing screams and cries, an inexplicable mix of pain and fear. The smell of explosives overwhelmed the air. Metal nuts and bolts fell to the floor, many embedded in defenceless bodies. Parents waiting outside the foyer for their teens who had only messaged them moments ago, discovered in only a millisecond, that their greatest fears had been realised.
It was 10:30pm Manchester time, and there had been 21,000 people inside the arena that night.
Five days on, we have learned that 22 lost their lives – ranging in age from just eight years old, to 51.
They included mums who were waiting to pick up their excited daughters, a teen couple who wanted “to be together forever”, and a 14-year-old girl, whose mother and grandmother were among those critically injured.