Saturday, June 18, 2011

Just Like Dorothy!

We had just come back from a big weekend celebrating our friend Mick Fanning's 30th birthday up in Byron and visiting our friends, Al and Cindy, and their kids. Joe had been sick all the week before and we were pretty exhausted from several late nights and the trip itself. The drive home was pretty intense with plenty of rain and flooding across the highway just before our turn off.

We put the kids to sleep early and Joe relaxed in front of the telly while I had a couple glasses of wine while skyping with my friend Michelle. We went to bed around 11.30 and were looking forward to a nice big sleep.

I woke up at about 6.00 in the morning to the sound of the rain drumming on the roof. I wear an eye mask to sleep, so not only did I look particularly glamorous with my unwashed hair, my stripey flannel pyjamas, and my leopard print light blocker, I was also oblivious to the lightning that was apparently flashing across the sky.

During the next twenty minutes the rain got louder and louder and louder to a point that I have never heard anything like it. All of the sudden there was an almighty crash. This will bring the kids running, I thought! And it sure did. Well, sort of. True came running in, but Rêve was already cuddled up in my bed. The door burst open and so did True's mouth.

"There's a fire and sparks and an explosion everywhere at the bowlo!" he yelled.

Well nothing gets me up and out of bed than the possibility of danger. They don't call me Five Alarm Carm for nothing!

We raced into the kitchen and peered across the street at the bowlo. We could see straight away that the flag pole had been knocked over and there were bits of broken tree branches all over the place. We saw Keryn, the cleaner, come out of the club looking a little bit stunned.

I went out on the deck and yelled across to her to see if she was okay. She said she was fine but that we should called Triple 0 because there were downed powerlines across the road. She was soon stopping cars from driving through. After we made the call, curiosity got the better of us.



The rain had stopped and there was an eerie silence all around. The world was still grey tinged because the sun had not yet risen. We started walking across the street and just couldn't believe our eyes. There were large trees down across the road and the club carpark. There were bits of metal roofing wrapped around poles and draped across power lines. There were bits of wood impaled in houses and into the ground.

Then we looked closer.

The bowling club roof was half gone!



Joe was busy taking photos on his iPhone and I ran back and got our camera.

The neighbours' houses that face the club had all suffered some sort of damage. The first house in town was newly renovated and was now missing a roof and all it's windows. The one next door had busted windows on all sides and their car had also lost three windows. The next house was missing heavy roofing tiles, which later were found in the middle house. Sharon and Wayne's house across from us had smashed windows out the back and a large piece of rafter had struck the house with such force it came through the wall inside beside the fridge.




At the end of our street is a big bushy area that was now littered with insulation and large pieces of corrugated iron. The house at the end of the street belongs to Glen Ralston. The large long green bush fire fence he had been told to erect by council was now bent, buckled and broken in several spots. Just beyond there was a swath cut through the trees and the area was covered with broken branches.

We had just had a tornado!

We wandered around the bowlo carpark and our street for a while drinking hot Ovaltine that Joe whipped up on our camp stove. Rêve  was still sleeping. He finally woke up around 10.30, completely unaware of what had gone on.

When Helen, the club manager and her husband Phil, the greenskeeper showed up later we showed them around with all the pride of parents of newborn twins. Phil and Helen live on the far side of town and had basically slept through the whole thing until someone called them to come down.

Everyone did their best to get interviewed by the various news stations that had arrived. NBN was first on the scene and I helped Sky get an interview with Essie who was the bloke in the house next to the reno house. He lives there with his wife and two young children. The baby boy woke up because of the noise of the storm so Essie had taken him into the kitchen to rock him back to sleep. He said he was standing there and heard the storm build and could vaguely see that the trees were bent over in the dark. Suddenly there was all sorts of sparks and a bang and he just ran and hid against a wall to protect his little boy and all the glass smashed in and everything went flying and then it was all done! Must have been terrifying!

True was awake and had just put his XBox on when he heard the crash. He went outside to have a look and it was all sparks and crazy and then came up to us. We have since suggested that perhaps next time he just come up to us and not go outside...

Anyway, after the kids had done their various walk byes while the cameras were rolling and Rêve had given the world the finger in the background we offered our help and then went home to grab a bite to eat. We tried to think of what to do with no electricity. Neighbour Bec came over and we thought maybe we would play some board games. We looked over at the club, and there was Phil and Ray Ray starting to clean up the greens.

Since we had offered, we all put on gumboots and went over to lend a hand. I thought we'd be there for ten or fifteen minutes, but about three hours later we were still there. Bec and I had raked and carried all the debris off one of the greens. This included brick seats, green shade cloths, broken branches and one small dead bird.

Not long after several other blokes in town showed up and they were on the other side of the club with Joe and the SES cleaning up tree branches and large and small chunks of metal and insulation. A group of us girls went into the club and moved all the cloth furniture and tables from the main bar into the dining area as it still had a roof.

They decided to tarp the bar and the gaming machines so I ran home and got our big camping tarp and several little ones. Another fella brought over his big arse tarp and there was plenty of coverage. I suggested we rescue the bottles of alcohol that line the back wall. My offer of storing them at my house was met with laughter, so we ended up putting them in a cupboard behind the bar.

There was a big crack in the main beam of the bar and a large rafter had smashed through the ceiling almost hitting the carpet. There were big cracks between the ceiling and the wall even in the restaurant. And there was a beam of sunlight pouring through and gaping hole above the bain maries.

The men who work at the club were worried about how to protect the poker machines. I suggested calling up some of the more avid players and watch as they draped themselves over their favorite money suckers. But apparently there are health and safety issues, so we just draped a tarp over them until they could be removed.

Eventually some safety people came and kicked everyone out of the club, but basically most of the work was done. We'd even saved all the photos and certificates that lined the wall, taking the greatest care of Polly's fish. You don't want a mad Maori, not matter how tiny she is!

By this point it was actually quite hot outside and everyone was pretty sweaty and tired from all the work of clearing up downtown Red Rock. We coerced the club into selling us a few slabs on tic and we all retired to the deck.

A little while later we saw that Wingy and Sunni who run the Chinese restaurant - the Red Wok - were wandering around the front of the club looking pretty helpless. Everyone was pretty much gone by then except some gawkers, so we went out to see what we could do to help.

Soon everyone was back up moving four large freezers of food over to neighbour James' shed where they could keep working until we found out what was happening with their insurance. The boys all chucked in and it didn't take long til that was all sorted. We asked around for extra freezers and Tim and Katie came to the party with one, bringing it on the back of a trailer and also some young fellow from Corindi who had recently moved from over West brought one down for them to use as well.

Finally it seemed all the hard work was done and the excitement was over. The whole gang was back on the deck and us girls prepared some rice and a whole bunch of Chinese food that Wing and Sunni had given to us as a thank you.

By this point more stragglers had arrived. Cathy and Ben Pellow couldn't make it home from Corindi due to the flood waters so they came to stay the night. There were two random girls that rented out James' place because they couldn't get to Brisbane, but they had no food and everything in town was shut. So they all got fed too.

The ABC had a live feed set up and there were seven blokes that hadn't eaten for ages looking a bit miserable with their limp white bread sandwiches so we brought over plates of food for them. They were ferried across the road by all the young kids and the guys were thrilled. Young Zoe and I brought them over a beer each and then offered them seconds. The last four blokes took up the offer of seconds and Zoe did a beautiful welcome to country for them. After they finished their news report we invited them back to the deck to meet the locals which they happily did. By the time they got up there though, every one had a their "more than merry" hats on and it was all quite raucous.

We introduced them to Stone's Ginger Wine (a Red Rock deck party staple) and of course I was dropping F bombs and other naughty words like a Honours Student of the School of Tourettes. They, like may other people, suggested that we just reopen the club on our deck. I wasn't sure how I felt about P****making himself at home and gorging on plates of food all day and Joe wasn't thrilled with the idea of J**** waking him up early in the morning to borrow twenty bucks to put through the pokies!

After a couple cups of tea, a few beers and draining the last of our Stone's,  the ABC guys decided it was time to hit the road. We offered them the option of staying at Dr. Phil's empty holiday house at the end of the road, but they declined. And it was a good thing too!

Not an hour after they left, there was a big brown out, where the lights got light and dark and light and dark. Amid cheering and laughter, we got out and lit about four thousand tea candles in preparation for a black out. Tony kept saying my candles smelled funny but I thought it was because some of them were fancy frangipani shaped lights.

Tony insisted he could smell burning plastic. Then wood. Suddenly Joe leapt up.

"The fucking freezers!"

He was sure that all the freezers we moved in Jame's shed had caught on fire. In retrospect, we should have known it was not the case because it didn't smell like a Chinese BBQ.

"Call Triple 0! Calling fucking Triple 0!"

Well, something was on fire!

I ran downstairs to see what was happening while Katie called Triple 0.

Glen Ralston's house was completely on fire and Dr. Phil's was already looking charred on one side.

The boys leaped into action. They went around banging on doors and waking people up - although most people were still awake probably listening to us noisy crew on the deck. Tony made everyone move their cars off the street and over to the bowlo. Anna and the other mothers gathered all the kids and brought them to safety across the road in the carpark and then moved them to Anna's house.

Eventually about eight fire engines showed up. At one point it looked like Dr. Phil's place was going to totally catch so Joe started getting a few precious things out of the house but then thought fuck it. He had the photos, the computers and the hard drives. The kids were safe and so was I so it was all good.

We watched the house burn and burn and burn until the police arrived and decided to send everyone away. Joe had an argument with a copper trying to find out if it was safe for us to go home with all the crazy electricity but the officer remained staunchly unhelpful til the end. We waited on the deck until almost all the crews left. An SES officer came over and said that, although they reckoned it was safe to stay for the night, why didn't we all turn off our power and sleep somewhere else for the night as it was probably going to put our minds at ease. Which we did.

Welcome to hotel Tony and Anna!

The next day we found out that almost all the houses on our street had not just lost electricity but they also lost all their appliances that were plugged in due to a huge power surge that blasted through six or seven houses. Somehow we remained unscathed. I have no idea how.

We did however end up with no internet or phone for over a week and it's still running kinda shitty.

The area is now being called a disaster area and there is assistance available from Centrelink and the council for all those people who were affected by the storm.

Whew!






Monday, June 6, 2011

Gamer

It's kind of embarrassing but I'm a gamer. And not a cool one.

First I was addicted to iSketch which is like Pictionary and really fun if you have a drawing tablet and pen. Sometimes played with my kids so that people would just think I was an indulgent mother trying to increase their artistic abilities.

Then I played Lexulous, an online multiplayer version of Scrabble. I played so much I learned all those crazy words that when you play with your friends in real life, they think you are a cheater, a nerd or both.

Now? Now I can't get enough of Rummikub. We got the board game from my sister and brother in law as a gift for the kids this past Christmas, but I'm so obsessive that I would play fifty games a day. That is unlikely to happen as pretty much everyone else in the house has a life. Instead, I play with randoms from around the world. And if I'm lucky, Joe and I will cuddle up in bed, each with our own laptops and play a few games against each other before bed.

I don't want anyone to think I'm a complete loser. I do have other interests. Like Survivor. Oh wait, what? That's another game? Why so it is! I've been spending days trying to figure out how we could play it at Station Creek in the summer when we go camping. Who would play? What would the challenges be? The rewards? Who would host it? What would the prize be? There must be a way to do it over a few weeks. Any ideas?

I know the game is played in the US every year. Australia had a couple seasons but sadly it never caught on here. It also is still going in several other countries, but you have to be a citizen of them. Of course Canada doesn't have it either, so I'm twice out of luck! I can only hope that Australia suddenly embraces Survivor fever as much as I have. In the mean time, I'm going all Bear Grylls and practising making fire with my cool flint lighter. I'm looking for bamboo (have you got any?) to make a rustic shelter, get my fishing skills up and then I'm gonna go eat rice from a coconut shell.

But not until I finish my next game of Rummikub.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Happy Dance Chicken



I love experimenting with cooking and I'm always inspired by sites like Foodgawker and by my big collection of recipe books and magazines.

A few years ago I entered Australia's Good Taste Magazines Home Cook of the Year competition and was the State Finalist for NSW. I was pretty stoked with the whole thing and it spurred me on to be more creative with my own recipes.

This one I came up with late last year and I call it Happy Dance Chicken because when I tasted it I was happy dancing for about half an hour. I could have called it OH MY FUCK THIS IS THE BEST CHICKEN EVER chicken, but it takes too long to say it when I'd rather be eating!

So how do you make Happy Dance Chicken? With just a few simple ingredients!

You can use any kind of chicken but I would suggest something with a bone and skin. I have used drumsticks, maryland and thighs and they all work great.

So lay out your chicken in your pan. Then get jars of garlic and ginger. I know a lot of people are purists about using fresh garlic and ginger, but for this recipe the really wet jarred stuff is perfect. So add a heap of that, then a whole bunch of paprika. Then take three or four preserved lemons (which you can make if not available to buy), cut out the white bits and dice up the skin into tiny pieces. Chuck that in. Then pour in a whole bunch of white wine. I get goon cos it's cheap and make sure it's not sweet.

Then bung it in the oven somewhere between 160 and 180 and cook it for ages turning every twenty minutes or so. I usually go for about an hour. But DO NOT LET IT DRY OUT! There should be quite a bit of sauce left over that you can pour on the chicken again just before serving.

I eat it with hot crispy chips from the Red Rock shop and it's fucking amazing.

This chicken is so good I was this far into it before I could take a picture!



My parents and my niece are giving happy dance chicken the thumbs up! The boys are too busy hoeing in!

Please enjoy Happy Dance Chicken!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Northern Light


This is another painting from the same series. It has a big silver frame and the background has little silver stars and lots of glitter. I was pregnant with True as you can tell by her cute tummy. I was living in Byron Bay and this was a way of feeling connected not just to my home in Canada but also to my family.

Dad loves seven pointed stars and him and mum live on a big property. The North Star is a beautiful beacon in the sky and the northern lights are an incredible sight that you often see on cold evenings in the sky.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Megan Rising


I love this painting. This is of my friend Megan who was one of the best friends I've ever had. We lived together in Toronto, worked at the Big Bop and always had these amazing adventures.

Megan was taller than me, lean and had big huge eyes and lips and a long nose. She had lanky brown hair that she'd casually flip from one side to another, unaware of how natural and beautiful she was. She always wore cut off vintage nighties or shabby white t-shirt, cut off jean shorts that were several sizes too big and belted low on her bony hips. My fave thing she wore was old police parade boots. They were steel toed and I had my own pair. All of us that worked in the clubs and lived the Queen St. scene seemed to have them in the late 80's/early 90's.

Megan was a muse for me and I think I did three paintings as well as heaps of sketches of her. We've sorta lost track of each other over the last few years, which is sad, but every now and then I track her down to see how she is going.

It might be time to do that again!

This painting is of course of her, but when it was done it reminded me of Bottecelli's Venus Rising, if she was a skinny punky kinda girl!

Buddha Baby


I did this painting when I was pregnant with True, my first baby. It was funny cos that's what he basically looked like not long after he came out!
True was born at my home in Byron Bay and it was a really amazing experience. The midwife who attended was Pam Sonia and I gave this to her as a gift and a thank you for helping me bring True into the world.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Dancing Funky Chicken


This is another painting from the same series. It's obviously aobut how much I love dancing, big feet and boobies. The hearts are made of wood and glued on. It's a feel good painting and reminds me how great it is to get your body moving!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The State of Origin

Well, I'm not a huge sport fanatic and my state of origin isn't even in Australia, but I do love watching everyone in the two states, NSW and Queensland, get all worked up about this match.

Joe is a sports freak. He loves anything with a ball. Or a puck. Or a stick. Or a bunch of guys running around. Hell, even a bunch of girls!

In highschool I dated a hockey player. That was an okay sport to watch, kinda fast and furious. Then I dated someone who was into golf. Not so fun. Watching garishly dressed, portly middle aged men drive a buggy around a park while trying to whack a little white ball with an upside down cane across an overly chemicalized bed of grass is not my idea of a good time. Although, I must admit, I'm partial to driving the buggy around. After  years of having to try to find some joy in golf, I vowed that the next man I dated would be great because there cannot be anything more boring that golf.

Wrong.

Cricket. Cricket is not only boring, it goes on all day. For many days. It's so long they have tea breaks during the match. It's so long that one series can take place over five days per city it's played in. And it gets played in about six different cities! Unbelievable.

Joe loves cricket so much  that I'm willing to indulge his dreams. When the Ashes came to Australia I sat on the internet, home phone and mobile for thirteen hours straight in order to secure tickets for him and his mates. In the drinking section. And that was imperative, because I think even a die hard cricket fan would have a hard time enduring three eight hour days in the Queensland sun without a beer.

Anyway, enough about cricket or I will find my self babbling on about all Joe's amazing cricket stories about meeting legends of the game and they end poorly when I tell them cos all I remember is there was a guy named Big Bird and thre was a meal in a fancy private room and that makes it sound sexual but it wasn't.

So tonight is the first match of the State of Origin. For this game the teams are made up of players who played their first games for either Queensland or New South Wales. Punters are supposed to cheer for the team from the state they were born in, although some people (Amy Hopes I'm looking at you) cheer for their husband's team because they are too piss poor to stand up for their own state. I, of course, go for the blues (NSW) because I have only ever lived in this state and also because if you go for Queensland, you have to wear maroon. I hate maroon.

Queensland has been kicking arse in this match for as long as I can remember having to watch it. The match is held every year and it's best of three. I think last year they won all three. So this year, all the Cockroaches (NSW/Blues) are hoping to win at least one game against the Canetoads (QLD/Maroons).

For me, it means that the downstairs will be full of men weeping, wailing and gnashing their teeth. There is nothing I can do to settle them down except shove food in their gobs to stave off the effects of mid strength beer and competitive natures.

Tonight I will be making Jalapeno Popper Dip and Buffalo Chicken Wings with Blue Cheese Dip.


Jalapeno Popper Dip aka. Crack Dip

Ingredients:
1 tub of  cream cheese - I just get the cheapest brand
1/2 cup mayonnaise - whole egg please!
1/2 cup shredded cheese
1/2 cup parmesan
1 jar of jalapenos - use half the juice. If you double the recipe use one jar with all the juice and one without
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs - find in Japanese section of store.
1/4 cup parmesan
1/4 cup butter

Directions:
1. Mix the cream cheese, mayonnaise,  cheese, parmesan  and jalapenos in a food processor and pour into a baking dish.
2. Mix the panko bread crumbs, butter and parmesan and sprinkle over the dip.
3. Bake in a 180 oven until bubbling on the sides and golden brown on top, about 10-20 minutes.
Keep an eye on it and don't let it burn or separate. Better a lower temperature for longer.

You can also heat up your dip by adding some chopped chilies.
Serve with corn chips and beer!


Buffalo Chicken Wings, Corn Chips, Jalapeno Popper Dip in rammekin, Devilled Eggs, Blue Cheese Dip.


Buffalo Chicken Wings

4 pounds chicken wings
salt and pepper
oil for deep frying

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup hot pepper sauce
1 tablespoon white vinegar

Directions:
Cut wing tips off. Cut remainder into a mini drumstick and flat bit. Sprinkle chicken wings with salt and pepper. Heat oil and fry wings in batches until crispy and cooked, about 10 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain; keep warm. In a small saucepan, melt butter; stir in hot sauce and vinegar. Pour over wings and toss to coat wings thoroughly.

Blue Cheese Dip

3/4 cup mayonnaise- whole egg please!
1 clove garlic, minced- I just get the jarred stuff
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley- optional - sometimes I use celery or spring onions
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese - get the cheap strong stuff - often Danish in origin
salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients; chill for an hour or two. Serve as a dip for the Buffalo wings.
Also paper towels or moist towelettes wouldn't go astray!


 Close up of Wings, Dip and Beer

This snacky feast will make any sports event a treat. Now even I'm looking forward to tonight!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Where is Little Archie?



My Grampa Debreuil had a great sense of humour and so did his five sons. I'm not sure who gave it to him, but at some point someone gave Grandpa the Joey Stivic Doll.

Grandma, in her heavy Belgian accent, would call one of us kids to open the door to the cellar, reach across the stairs to the small gap that housed game, the guillotine that could chop cigarettes, but not your finger (back in the day when ciggies were cheap enough to chop up as part of a joke), puzzles with one piece missing and hidden in Grampa's pocket and of course the Archie Bunker doll.

I don't even know if my Grandparents were fans of the Archie Bunker show (better known as All In The Family) but they did have a big arse black and white TV in an even larger wooden housing that had pride of place in the living room and was host to several lace doilies, a few African violets and some family photos. So I have a feeling they must have seen the show at least once.


Well, anyway, this show became a huge hit in the 70's when I was growing up. They were one of the most famous families of the time.  Gloria, the only daughter of the main couple, Edith and Archie, got married to a guy who's name I can't remember but his nickname was Meathead and apparently his last name was Stivic. He later turned out to be Rob Reiner who did one of my fave all time mockumentaries, Spinal Tap. Anyway Gloria and Rob or Meathead had a baby and it was called Joey.

Somehow a toy company got involved and that's how baby Joey/Archie ended up in the cupboard above the cellar stairs at Grampa and Gramma's house. I don't know why it was considered Grampa's doll, but everytime he looked at that teeny tiny penis, he would laugh until tears were running down his cheeks. Everyone else would be pissing themselves too, possibly over jokes made at the expensive of the little twig and berries or maybe just cos watching Grampa so amused was infectious.

Grampa and Gramma have both passed away. I moved to Australia and I don't really have anything material to remind me of them. I have an old winter jacket of Grampa's and I had a little gold cross of Gramma's that got stolen along with my bag.

But gosh, I'd love the little boy doll with the even smaller willy. I wonder where he went or if he's still sitting above the cellar door waiting for someone to laugh at his small endowment again....

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Mary Magdalene has a Blog, Just Like Me!

And her boyfriend's name is Jesus!

My son True came across this blog by A.J. Miller, also known as Jesus. You can check out what Jesus has to say here. Apparently Jesus grew up here in Coffs! And he has a girlfriend who coincidentally is the reincarnation of Mary Magdalene. And she has a nose piercing!

Mary has now moved on from washing feet and spends her days blogging and having internet catfights with other women over who is the real Mary M. Jesus appears to do seminars and can upload stuff on the net. And he's got paypal.

Neither Mary nor Jesus have any sources of income besides donations from their followers. And they are still alive! WTF?!? So you can donate money to them via paypal care of Jesus and Mary, but if you are doing a personal cheque it has to be made out to Alan John Miller, cos it simplifies his accounting! So even if he's really Jesus who can walk on water, turn water into wine, heal the sick and come back to live even after being crucified, well he still can't sort out his accounting under the name Jesus. And it goes to a bank in Queensland. Jesus lives in Queensland, Australia?!?

You can also donate to two volunteers, Lena and Igor, who are from Russian and the Ukraine, but now live here with Jesus and Mary. They aren't apparently Jesus or Mary or any of the followers reincarnated, but lucky them, you can still donate your hard earned cash to them. Maybe it goes to Igor's hairdresser to maintain his dreadlocks.

If all it takes is a blog and asking people, well I'm going to do it. Feel free to make any donations payable to me. Email me for details of where to deposit money or how to sign your house over to me.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Big Eyed Susan


I love painting and I love dancing and this painting is about both things. The background was spun on a pottery wheel. I also like big feet and boobies!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Aries Fire Child


This painting is another self portrait. I am an Aries and I love fire. This painting incorporates a lot of what I call rythym lines so each line leads to another line and the whole figure should have a nice flow to it.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

TV

Kk, I've had a cocktail or two and just come in from a few shots of Bailey's on the deck. I happened to catch a glimpse of Australia's version of Sex In The City. There's a fat chick with bright red hair screaming about her "vajazziling appointment" gone wrong and suddenly it cuts to her best mate waxing her pink bits.

So does not happen.

And not cos she's chubby with red hair.

I've been chubby with red hair. I've been slim with blonde. I've been dark and in between. And any combination of the above.

But there is no effin way I'm calling over any 'best mate' to wax my crotch. For so many reasons.

First, we all saw this on an episode of the Kardashians. And if you didn't, probably you shouldn't be writing for a girlie show.

My sister lives in Canada and doesn't know anything about waxing so she's probably not a candidate. The other people that are close enough to come in contact with my hairy female flaps in Australia are:

1. Joe, my husband : Even if he would do it, I wouldn't invite him into the dungeon. Regardless if he's a fan of the hairless Brazilian or the wild bush of the seventies, he is not who I am going to call to contain the wilderness below. I'm happy for him to get behind the mower and keep the garden of Red Rock trim. It is my job to maintain 1 Happy St. Garden of Eden.

2. Rebecca: Rebecca saw my crotch in all it's elastic glory during the birth of my second child. Rebecca lives in a haze of lavender and high altitude oxygen from Byron Bay and she'd probably try to massage it off or just meditate it into another sphere. Or just encourage it to grow like her chamomile patch.

3. Marika: Marika is my sweet friend from Byron that I met when she was a lil thing of seventeen. She's done a beauty course, runs a salon and has adamantly refused to wax the bacon strip. She gave me about fifty percent of the fodder for my stand up comedy routine in 2001. But she's not gonna dive between my lets to strip me down to adolescence.

So that leaves me. And watching that show, I'm wondering if the writer (male?) has not only no female friends, but no female experience.

And I am not the only person to do what I am about to tell you.

YOU DO IT YOURSELF.

Okay, I know there are heaps of chicks out there going, fuck that shit - no way! But you all live in some urban area where you can go to that anonymous Korean Bathhouse where they wax you as bald as a baby without even knowing your name, but for us country girls it ain't that easy.

I can't call my neighbour and say, hey, can you wax my crotch for me today? No. I have to do it myself.

Why am I doing this? I don't know. I'm married. I'm happy. He seems happy. I can trim, I can grow, I can shave. I don't think he notices or cares. But it's a girl thing. I don't go to the gym, I don't hang out at the beach (and I mean that in the literal hirsute way) and I'm not doing macrame with pubes.

But I thought late one night while Joe was away I'd give it a burl. A burl! Like it was that easy! Just wax the shit off!

I don't know about your fan, but mine's had two children go through it and, while it ain't fringed, it's ruffled. That Mini Austin gateway let two Mac trucks through it. My two kids heads were 98% percentile and off the chart respectively. The last kid was nine pounds. Lisa Rinna might have a trout pout, but my nether pout is more resembling a Port Jackson Shark.

Waxing a Port Jackson Shark is a fucking challenge. Laying the wax on is nothing once you getbeyond the burn. But fucking tearing the fucking wax and hair of is another fucking story. Like, lay down and imagine the pull you are willing to give to the areas you have to wax. Then imagine, and I'm telling you that you gotta be laying down, imagine those areas being well above your head before the short and curlies tear from your flesh into the purple wax of death. Listen to the sound of your skin fluddberdijubbing back into your crotch. Cos that's exactly the sound it's gonna make.

ONOMATOPOEIA  LESSON:

FLURK FLURK FLURK - the sound of wax going on

WHHSSHH WHHSSHH - the sound the air makes as you try to cool the burning wax

HOLY MOTHER FUCKER - not really onomatopoeia, but you will make this sound, cos that hot wax shit burns

WHOO WHOO WHOO - the sound you make as you prepare to rip the now cooled wax off

CHHHHRRRRRRIIIKKKKKK - the sound the first two centimeters of wax being ripped off makes

OH MY GOD, OH MY GOD FUCK OH FUCK SHIT FUCK - again not really onomatopoeia, but you will make this sound, because ripping out pubes out of your pink bits hurts like a mother fucker

CHRIK - the sound you will hear for the next half hour as you try to pry the hot wax off your pink bits centimeter by centimeter.

HUH HUH HUH - the sound you will make when you have one strip left (or two depending if you've decided to go with the half flap mo or not....)

CHRRRIIIKKKK- the sound of the last super fast tear you make just to get it over and done with

PAH SCHWING PA WUBBA WUBBA WUBBA - the sound you will hear when your pee flaps stretch to as far as your arm can reach, then finally let go of those last few hairs and then come slapping back down to your crotch where they belong.

I think there's plenty of room for a seventies renaissance.

And that fucking show should be cancelled. It makes my besties feel bad that they aren't good enough.

So now I'm going to do a poll. In the comments can you tell me - have you waxed another woman's crotch? And if so, was it for free? And if you say yes to that as well, can you come and do mine?

Cold Weather

I fucking hate it. How do you feel? Please leave comments below.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Should I Stay or Should I Go

I know I've just started my blog, but I'm already considering switching to Wordpress.... what are your thoughts out there? What would you recommend?

I love how on Blogger I can make my blog look colour wise and stuff how I want it to, but I can't seem to get all the stuff that is usually on the right or the left of the blog to appear anywhere but at the bottom! Does this make a difference?

Does Wordpress offer much more than Blogger? I worked with Wordpress when I worked on the Yarrawarra Website and it looks pretty special. Hmmmm. What to do...

Please give me your comments and advice! I need it! lol

Sunday, May 15, 2011

What were you like as a baby?

My friend Amy thinks this is what I was like.




Doesn't that make you wonder what she thinks I'm like now?!? I guess I should stop stuffing my bra...

Fashion Week - Saturday Day 7

I had the only crap sleep of my night Friday night and not just because I was woken up a couple times by Pete stumbling around the house in search of food, conversation and his bed. I knew I had bought quite a bit of stuff and was worried about how to get it all home. I have reoccurring dreams of being having an endless stash of pretty things and unable to get them to where I am going and being forced to leave them behind. They are very stressful dreams, so don't laugh. I think it comes from spending so many years living out of a backpack while traveling the world.

I got up early and headed out to Oxford Street to get myself a big stripey bag from Oxford Variety. Man I love that shop. Can someone please get me a pair of knee high fluro orange socks from there to go with the full on false eyelashes I bought? I think I could live in that place.

I had a quick visit from Suzi, who was still house hunting. On Tuesday I had checked one for her around the corner from Pete's but she was still looking for a place that was just what she wanted. For all I know she's still doing that, so if you have any leads on an affordable but funky pad somewhere in the city that would be just right for a tiny Australian Indian girl, please let me know!

Pete was at a course and unable to give me a lift to the airport so after Suzi left I decided I better make a move. I had heaps of crap and I wasn't sure how I was going to go getting from A to B with all my crap.

I didn't know a cab number so I thought I would walk up the street until I could hail one. Well, didn't I pick the wrong street? I hit the corner of Liverpool and Oxford without a cab passing me so I ducked in a shop that offered airport shuttles. I'd missed the last one by minutes so would have had to wait another half hour.

Bugger it, I thought, I'll just go down the street a block and take the train! I had my suitcase, my purse, my laptop and a big arse stripey bag full of clothes and so I felt like a sherpa disguised as Liza Minelli. I threw everything on my back and dragged the suitcase behind me. I bumped all the way down two flights of stairs at Musuem only to find the train was not running that day due to maintenance. I was so frustrated and tired and sweaty and I couldn't bear the thought of climbing back up those goddamn stairs so I followed the instructions of the ticket lady.

"Just take the train to Central Station and catch the bus. It only costs $3.20 and will get you there in about the same time."

Well I don't know what drugs she was inhaling but she was effing wrong. I had to walk down two more flights of stairs, take the train to Central Station then go up sets of stairs, then down sets of stairs, then up sets of stairs, then down, then walk down this hall, then up stairs down another hall... I don't think Tenzig Norgay worked as hard as me humping shit up and down Everest!

Finally I got on the bus and just fell into a reverie. I couldn't wait to offload some of my luggage and relax. After checking in my luggage, I got myself some Subway, some hot chips from Maccas, a magazine and a newspaper and made myself comfortable in the departure lounge. The flight was on time and before too long we were descending into Coffs Harbour.


Joe and the boys drove up just as I exited the airport so I threw my bags in the boot and we started to drive off. It was so great to see my boys and Joe and I was keen to hear what they had done the past week without me. I was wondering if they had gotten on, eaten well, and even grown up.

Apparently all three. They had now graduated to drinking beer in the backseat of the car!

I might have to stay home for a while!

Fashion Week - Friday Day 6

Well, who was completely fucked this morning? Yes, that would be me. And I know Pete was cos he had to work. And I'm pretty sure I heard Asia sobbing softly in the morning light. We had all well and truly destroyed ourselves.

It was at least two in the arvo before I could drag myself out of the house. I don't even remember what I wore, but I knew I was shaky and dehydrated. I wobbled up to Oxford St. to get Bec and her beautiful assistant Tasj each a goody bag. This one contained Belgian chocolate, sesame snaps, green tea, energy bars, fresh mandarins and essential oils. I really enjoyed making these little bags because these two women not only looked after me, but they really put so much heart and soul into making this amazing production run smoothly. I know there is a massive team that puts it together and there were so many friendly people working and volunteering their time and energy. It made it a real privilege to be invited to attend and then to be treated like I was a special VIP. Great job, team!

When I finally made it down to the OPT it was almost four. I had screwed up my trains and ended up at Central Station instead of Circular Quay and then the train was late and then I was considering not even going and then I was there. Thank god!

Because it was the last day, it was a lot less hectic during the afternoon. Bec was sitting at the concierge's desk with her cute little daughter Lulu overseeing  the venue. Lulu had dressed herself and was looking like a million bucks, just like her mummy! Lulu was there because Bec's awesome husband James was there with his mother and daughter. Lulu was too young to go to the bar area where daddy was treating Nan to a champagne while waiting for his other daughter to return from a show.

Bec sat me down on a stool and we had a nice catch up about the whole week and she laughed at how shattered I was. We made plans to have her and her family come up and stay with us in Red Rock when they were ready for some respite. I really hope they come up so I can show them a great time up here in the sticks!

I went out the back and bumped into James and his charming mum. We had a bit of a chat about Byron Bay as their family used to spend summers there while James was growing up and I had lived there my first seven years in Australia. I was not the best conversationalist because I was so cloudy from the night before and no doubt smelled like a booze factory. I had a coffee to sharpen up but that just left me with the physical shakes. They can't help but have been impressed with me.

The twelve year old daughter turned up and so it was time for them to head off. Pete had decided to have a quiet day (more on that non event later!) and everyone else was working or unavailable, including my main wingman Asia. I wasn't too worried though, cos there was no way I felt like drinking.

I bumped into Valerie and her friend Zoe and joined them on the couch which was tempting enough to lay down on and just have a big long nap. I could barely talk and they must have found it quite a change from the unstoppable flow of verbal diarrhea that I had the night before.

The call for the next shows came and I was more than happy to go hide my wrecked self in the dark. I watched Daniela-Stephanie Puglisi, Daniella Caputi, Del Playa Drive, Jaime Lee, and Virginie Lynn. This was a group show called the New Generation and was showcasing young designers. They were all very talented but my stand out fave was Jaime Lee. Her clothing was amazing - it was fun and quirky, very well made and had heaps of WOW pieces. They were very colourful with a large dose of fun and eccentricity. They stood out from anything I had seen so far. They were definitely designed with a woman who likes to be recognized as an individual in mind. I read up on Jaime and she started out as an artist and her clothing is inspired by her art. I say bravo and keep an eye on this young talent!

After the show, I caught up with Valerie, Zoe, the actress Natasha Cunningham and her friend Amber, who I just found out, according to her website, is a style icon. I thought we had a lot in common!

You will be able to read more about Carmel Toe soon.

They had moved inside as it was pretty warm and cosy. A brisk breeze was blowing off the harbour and without the fortification of six litres of alcohol in my system, I felt the cold.

One of the girls got a round of drinks but my hand was shaking so bad I could barely get it to my mouth. It was actually quite funny. I probably should have eaten more that day too. I was rushing so hard to get down there I hadn't had breakfast or lunch and now it was dinner time with no food in sight!

I was undecided whether to stay or go cos I was hanging for a feed, but the last show was on in a few minutes so I decided to stay.  I went with Valerie and Zoe downstairs where the final show was being held. I hadn't gone to a downstairs show before and it was quite exciting. As the last show there was a huge crowd queued up and it really felt like an Event.

None of us girls had passes or tickets and I was unable to get hold of Bec to escort us in, but luckily Ranui, who was running the backstage, came by and brought us all in.

I actually scored a front row seat! There was one seat left on the corner and the two girls graciously suggested I sit in it and, having my hands full of bags, I was more than happy to take it. There was the final goody bag of the week sitting on the seat and I thought that would be a perfect ending for an amazing week. Then this troll of a thing sitting behind me snatched the bag just as I was about to sit down. I turned around and held it and it was a Mexican stand off. She glared righteously at me daring me to fight for it. I thought she was pretty pathetic knowing she had stolen it right from under me, but then I realised I actually wasn't even supposed to be there and, well, if she's that desperate for some Veet Strips that you are willing to humiliate yourself for them, just have em! She probably had a hairier crotch than me anyway.

I squeezed over a bit more and Valerie sat her tiny arse down next to me. I loudly explained about the mannerless desperado behind me and we tittered as though we were so above that. She and her friend must have felt guilty because they shoved their hairy weighty cans over and offered Zoe a spot. So we were all set and the lights were about to go down when disaster struck.

Our big tall Russian sounding security guy brought a lady over in a fantastic vintage floor length seventies gown and a turban. She had dark painted on eyebrows and a dramatic looking face. Unfortunately for me, wearing a turban can only mean one of two things. Either you are an amazing and important fashionista because who else could/would pull off a look that stepped straight out of a 1970's Vogue photoshoot or a camera still from an early episode of Dynasty. Or, alternatively, the person has cancer.

I'm not sure which, but I wasn't about to start arguing about the situation. So Valerie and I both spent the show standing. I had so many fricken bags of heavy shit in my arms it was like a Survival endurance competition. The show hadn't even begun and I wanted it to be over!

The final show was by a designer named Bowie and what a show it was. It was truly and extravaganza with long legged models, fantastic origami ornaments and gorgeous frocks in black, white, red, gold and silver. It was a stunning finale and really closed Fashion Week with a bang.

The girls were heading out for dinner, but I thought I better head home and have a bit of a break and change before heading out for the after party. I texted Pete on the way home. He was heading out for dinner with his boyfriend Rod, who is an amazing artist. As much as I know they would both have loved my company, I thought it was wiser just to spend some time lying in a bed with my eyes closed.

On the way home I stopped in at Don Don Restaurant. Don Don is the smallest, most packed and least glamorous restaurant I have ever seen. The kitchen is the size of an inner city closet but it pumps out meal after meal after meal. I was starving so I ordered tempura don with miso soup and a soft shelled crab. The miso was hot and rejuvenating, the tempura was perfect but the soft shelled crab was heavy, oily and really disappointing. I had soft shelled crab the first time ever in Toronto at Sushi Queen in about 1993. It was light and crispy and exploded in your mouth with flavour and juice. It was served with Ponzu Dipping Sauce and I crave it to this day. Is there anywhere in Sydney that can recreate this experience? So far, my answer is no.

I got a bit weirded out at one moment and just needed to be home, so I got the rest of my meal takeaway. Note to self: tempura and other deep fried delicacies do not go well as takeway. They become a steamed soggy mess.

I chilled at Pete's Palace for ages as Pete was already gone by the time I got there. After some time went by, I started to question whether I wanted to go out. Again. What is happening to me?!?

I realised I still had Megan's dress and that she, Heidi and Kristie were all hanging out so I thought I would return the frock and spend some time catching up with my girls. I packed a thank you goody bag for Meg's for the loan of style and headed up to the Cross.

I ran into Quentin Kenihan (not literally) on the way up to Megan's. I noticed that his face bore a striking resemblance to Pedro, who works at the Red Rock Bowling Club. Unusual.

I picked up a couple bottles of red for the girls and then headed up to the cute little flat.

Now I don't know about you, but if I was young, gorgeous, single and looking for a man, I don't think I would assume I would find him in a seventh floor unit at the top of the Cross, especially not while wearing trackie dacks and a hair bun. But oddly enough, all three girls, while lamenting the lack of a good man in their lives and their desire for a family, were all doing just that. Why was I, the old married one with children, the only one dolled up on a Friday night about to head out to an exclusive after party? I was shocked, to say the least. Megan was sick and the other two were getting up for a six am training session. I don't know if that was for running a marathon or to stay fit enough to catch a man, but I hope it works for them!

I couldn't convince even one of them to come out with me, so after tucking Meeg's in bed and sending the other two Nana's off in a car to their own beds, I headed out for my own Friday night adventure.

I just rounded the corner and there he was. Jesse Archer! Jesse writes a blog that I have been following since Matthew, my writing mentor introduced me to it about two years ago after I introduced him to my mum's quilting blog. I started commenting on Jesse's blog, we became facebook friends and eventually when he and his boyfriend, Bam, moved to Australia, they came to visit me in Red Rock! I had tried to contact him to come with me to Fashion Week but he had been back visiting in NYC and didn't get my message.


Bam, Jesse and I in front of the truck.

It's probably a good thing because Jesse and I in Red Rock is a dangerous combo, so I can't imagine us on a Friday night in Sydney. He and Bam had just finished dinner with a friend and were heading home, but we had time to take a few snaps. Jesse almost had me convinced to jump in the fountain for one, (Why would that be the first pose that would spring to his mind? Oh, that's right, he's Jesse!) but thankfully settled for one beside it. I was spewing that we hadn't been able to catch up and he and Bam will be top of my list on my next visit!

I walked up the stairs to The Beach Haus which was much different from the last time I was there. I keep calling it The Bath Haus, maybe from my teenage visits to Le Bain Douche in Paris when I danced the night away with Claudia Schiffer and Naomi Campbell. No, I know what you are thinking, but I wasn't a model. I worked as a portrait artist in the Square in front of the Centre Pompidou but the owner of the club at the time loved a little Edith Piaf like street urchin flavour to mix it up with all the rich and glamorous and my sister and I fit the bill.


Me picking daisy petals on a break from doing portraits...you can see my easel in the background.


I think I am nineteen or twenty and I have my trolly with my easel and chairs ready to go to work as a Parisian artist.
 Out front of the Pompidou Centre, my sister Cherie looks on while I show off how flexible I am.

Back in Sydney, it was great on the night cos it was jam packed. I recognized several regulars from the OPT and found myself a little spot on the couch to take it all in. Soon Valerie and her girls showed up.


Fashion week is definitely getting to me.

We ran into Natasha, then Ranui and Filip. The boys were all like cows to a salt lick for my tatas that night and I am lucky to have several photos to document the attraction that mammaries have for grown men.


Naughty Filip wants to get closer.

As my stylist he decided the off the shoulder look was now in. Any more and it would have been the one boob out look.


Ranui, a Grinspoon fan, wanted to make Joe jealous. Then he tried to use me as a pole for dancing on.

Not long after this, knowing I had a big day of packing and travel ahead of me, I decided to do the Harry Houdini and disappear. I slid out of the club with out any long good byes and headed back to Bourke St.

I met my tranny hooker again.

"How are you tonight?"

"Good."

"Have you had a busy night?"

Blank look.

"It's a beautiful night for it."

Incredulous look.

It's obviously time for me to stop trying to recover and just shut the hell up and keep walking.

I entered the house quietly, trying to not make too much noise in case I wake Pete who had been working all day. It worked only because he wasn't sleeping there. He was actually still out getting off his face and came stumbling and crashing into the house at about 5 am, threw himself on my bed and started regaling about the adventures of his night.

Good morning Pete!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Fashion Week - Thursday Day 5

While Megan and I were bonding over the dregs of Pete's bottle of red, we spoke to my daytime partner in crime, Asia, during a drunken late night phone call. I assured her that I was fine to be rung at whatever hour in the morning cos I was super keen to make a big day of it. And of course I felt like absolute rat shit in the morning and was less than enthusiastic about being awake before noon.

But the world of fashion was calling me. Or at least recovery at the balcony with the Rosemount bar was. and so I slipped on my borrowed Manning Cartel dress, black tights and some sensible chair pushing shoes, grabbed my coat and the wheels and headed up to meet Asia. She had been dropped off at Taylor's Square which was perfect for me as I wanted to hit the Big Bargain Clearance shop to get a cheap bag to carry my Tupperware in. Yes, I smoke rollies and I store all the bits and bobs in a blue Tupperware sandwich container. It's all the rage in Red Rock.

First up though, was a bottle of Powerade to help sort out my daily dehydration issues. I also decided that I couldn't be the only recipient of a goody bag and that the lovely and accommodating Bec was more than deserving of a bit of appreciation. I had a cute little gift bag and filled it with milk and dark chocolate from Belgium, a container of dried fruit and nuts, a sesame snap bar (I just love them!), some green tea and two plump little orange mandarins packed full of vitamin C. I thought that it contained everything Bec would need to keep her energy up during the hectic chaos that is her life during Fashion Week. As far as I know, all she'd eaten the day before was a bag of chips, so as a mother I was starting to get concerned about her well being!

Then Asia and I respectively rolled and strolled into the Singapore Eating House which is across from the IGA that sells my chili corn nuts. Actually, while shopping for Bec, I bought two bags for myself and convinced Asia to get one for herself. She told me later she ate the whole bag in one sitting, they are that good! I would have gotten some for Bec, but you know how addictive those fashion types are, haha.

Anyway, Asia and I both decided to get Char kway teow as it came highly recommended on the food review clippings taped to the window. The place has less personality than a hospital cafeteria with fluro lighting, large bain maries, beige walls adorned with faded Picasso prints and a location in the Oxford Square. But the food was tasty and abundant and I had more than enough for takeway after eating till I was ready to explode and for $8.50, that's great value! Why that's $4.25 a feed!

I got my crappy handbag from BBC (does that make it sound hipper?) and we headed off on the bus to the OPT (I already know that sounds hipper) and the shows.

Some of the buses in Sydney are wheelchair friendly which means they have a little ramp that can flip out onto the sidewalk so the chair can roll up. This is fine if you have someone pushing you, but pity the person who has to roll themselves. You get to the top of the ramp, take a sharp right and then flip some seats up (which often have to be vacated by some other passenger) and lock the chair in. The person in the chair then has to spend the duration of the trip facing backwards which, if it was me, would immediately lead to car sickness and vomiting out the window. Luckily Asia didn't seem to suffer from any symptoms and we got off the bus without having to clean up any spew.

Getting Asia off the bus was a bit scary because you have to go backwards or the little lip at the bottom of the ramp would send her flying. I did it fine the day before but today was also on a steep hill making it seem even a bit more precarious. Asia was trying to help by shoving the door of the bus which then sent the chair veering to the right and precariously close to the edge. Asia and I were almost hysterical with laughter by the time we got her safely down the ramp. I think a big bloke actually came and helped for the final dismount. I'm glad there were no accidents!

Then we were off down the hills of the rocks which again was pretty intense cos the big wheels of the chair give it some projection and the thing had to be pulled back like the reins of a runaway stallion. Another group of blokes offered to give us a hand which was very nice because I was sick of the workout I was getting, knowing that I was going to arrive at the venue with pit stains on my silk frock!

The day before Bec had suggested that we get our hair done at the promotional Redken Hair Salon located just at the entrance. Asia's cousin was supposedly working there although I seem to have had the only sighting and Asia couldn't even get hold of her on the phone. We humped the chair in and booked ourselves some do time with the stylists. I was keen to go first when offered cos I was ready for a nana nap. Well, I basically came out looking like one. Effin Eff! I told the chick to do what she wanted and then she got all distracted by some people who came to interview her and I ended up looking like a really old conservative woman with a rolled bob and some dead ends hugging her cheeks. Granted my friendly stylist didn't have much to work with and suggested I get rid of my mullet asap. I should have gotten her to curl it up and go for the Liz Taylor Just Been On a Bender with Richard look I had been working all week, but I don't think that would have impressed her much either.

Asia got her hair straightened and wasn't very pleased either. She hates hair spray and her helmet was more than solid. Luckily we knew that there was plenty of booze upstairs to take our minds off our uncharacteristically straight laced hair.


Who invited Nana?


 This was after I took the roll out and pinned it up. It was also after several champagnes.

We breezed through the entrance of the OPT like we owned the place and headed up our private lift to find Adam our personal bartender and order our regulars. It was like going back to highschool after summer break, I tell ya. We found a location in the sun, but ended up in a loud argument over Asia's ability to maneuver her chair. It was overheard by a lady and her daughter who asked if we were sisters. How embarassing! And even worse was when we realised we both knew them from Byron Bay! Shame! The good thing was it made us get over our snit very quickly and thankfully it was laughed off.

The first show we went to see was Kooey. Asia was set up in her regular corner by the photogs pit and I scored a second row seat and had a lovely chat with my seatmate who was a buyer from the UK. That also meant a gift bag and I scored one for Asia as well, the poor crippled darling, so we were both stoked! The show was great, although Asia was getting very sick of seeing swimwear as it felt like she was being teased since she could barely go in the shower at the moment, much less recline on a sandy beach all day in the hot sun.

There was a fairly big gap between shows that we were able to go to which meant we were forced to fill in the blanks with alcohol consumption at the Rosemount Bar. Everyone seemed to know us and we were treated like gold from the moment we put in our drinks order to when we left our last show. We eventually set up camp outside on some lounges on the balcony and pretty soon had a posse of fashionistas to hang with.

We ran into Ranui again who introduced us to the beautiful and talented Valerie Tolosa and her friends. We also ran into our actress friend Natasha again who tried to steal Asia. Keep the brakes on tight Asia!

We next went to see the Antonia Paris, Billi Keato, Luela and Sally Koeswanto group show. Billi Keato had a dress cut on the bias that was just exquisite and so perfectly made I almost cried. I also almost cried cos one of the waiters had pushed Asia in and stood behind her for the full show. Seeing her there in her hairdo and her vintage dress in her chair with a big tall handsome dark haired body guard dressed all in white except for his citrus coloured bowtie and suspenders had me cracking up. I also almost cried cos I had second row seats again and felt like I was the luckiest girl in the world. I also almost cried cos I was getting a bit tipsy and emotional. Substituting bubbles for food doesn't really work, I can tell ya!

We headed back to our camp at the second set of lounges and pretty soon had a posse of fabulous and entertaining people to keep us company. Asia's bodyguard and our other waiter Adam kept delivering us drinks and nibblies although no one else was getting table service. Our filters were off and the dirty rock and roll stories were flowing as freely as the champagne. We didn't care who was listening or even if no one was listening because the lights were low, the opera house was pretty and we were at Fashion Week, dammit!

We called Pete up and told him to join us, giving him heaps of advice on what to wear, now that we were part of the scene.

"No cream leather, thank you!"

Of course I missed the first ten phone calls and texts to say that he had arrived and left poor Pete waiting downstairs, but finally he too was ensconced on the lounge and part of the gang.


Pretty Pete looking sweet!
...but not for long...

We were going to go see a show but it was downstairs and with all the crap we had and Asia we thought it would be just as easy to stay up stairs and continue drinking free champagne. Not really that hard of a decision at the time I suppose.

When the show was done, Valerie and Ranui and friends invited us to come for drinks downstairs at another bar. Which of course we did.


Me and Valerie and some strange building in the background.


Me and my super size six year old.


Oh my! What is she doing? It tickles!


 Oh! Baby's hungry and wants to nurse! There's mummy's boobies!


And yes, we absolutely needed tequila shots and more champagne!




Me and the lovely Valerie. I think I'm pulling my face back to smooth out the wrinkles.

Now after the tequila shots, the night became very blurry. I remember laughing a lot but I don't really remember this:


or this:


 or this:


I'm not sure at what point I thought it would be a great idea to be a footstool for a cast, but judging by the number of photos, I would say I was pretty committed.


It also appears that everyone else completely forgot I had become part of the furniture.


Several hours later, I was helped to my seat...

At one point, we all decided to meet at King's Cross, but the exact destination was not made clear so Asia, Pete and I ended up at some random pub. Asia and Pete had to take an elevator to get to where we were supposed to go and I ended up sitting for ages in the wrong area until Pete came and got me which gave me the shit and then there was some arguing and I remember sitting in an all but empty ballroom thinking this doesn't seem very happening. We all decided to leave, I don't know when or how and I think I was allowed in the elevator this time cos the stupid arse bouncer wasn't looking so I didn't get separated. Whew!

Then we were out on the street and Pete was ringing Valerie who was already in bed and then we were walking home to Pete's Palace and then I tripped and skinned my knee like a ten year old and then we were drinking Amaretto straight and then I don't remember. Luckily Asia's photos of the night have come in handy once again.


My skinned knee is visible through my tights.


Pete and I demonstrate various ways to enjoy Amaretto.


With corn nuts obviously!

 I also gleaned some information from the the texts from Pete (on the top floor) and I (on the bottom floor) sent to each other:

C: Where did you go?

P: Upstairs. Come up. Love you, u big leso with the black hair.

C: I love you too my big gay pete. Where's my sleeping pills?

P: I'm slim gay Pete. And I just took mine.

C: Yes you are and yes you did.

P: Kyggfdghhcfjggh.

Nighty night.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Fashion Week - Wednesday Day 4

So even though I was tired and a bit groggy after the night before, I was excited to get a phone call from Asia in the morning. She the one with the broken leg. I knew there was no way she was going to be able to maneuver around Fashion Week on crutches, especially since this was to be her first day vertical in over two weeks! So she was dropped off at Pete's palace and had a look around while I finished getting ready.

We got in another cab and headed up to a chemist at the top of Oxford to get her some wheels and me some new shoes. This meant that we would miss the Shakuhachi show that Samantha E was promoting or publicizing or selling or something. I don't really know anything about it, except that Karissa was wearing it head to toe the night before and it certainly got HER noticed! lol

So Asia got a nice set of black wheels - pretty hardcore looking for a manual wheelchair. My grandma and my auntie were both in wheelchairs and theirs' were not as tough looking as this one!

I had asked Asia to bring a leopard print throw but she didn't much to my dismay. Never mind, I thought I could always throw my coat over her legs for effect. Mind you I was wearing a little pink shifty petticoat thing that would have been great for a 20's party but was definitely not going to keep me warm from the cold breezes that come off the Harbour. I guess that's what all that alcohol was for!

I pushed her down the street to a shoe shop I saw in the passing taxi and scored two cute and relatively sensible pairs of shoes that would be a good combo for fashionista/nurse. I decided my charge needed some fresh air after being cooped up in houses for the last fourteen plus days, so I wheeled my Super Size Baby down to the bottom of Oxford St. I was still a bit seedy and parched so I grabbed a Powerade at the same time as we got bus tickets. You should have seen my face when I couldn't get the damn thing open properly. I thought my head was going to explode.

We took the bust down to some street with some building and went in and up for a great Yum Cha meal. I think it was called Sky Phoenix and it was a great place to eat. Asia had called ahead and they were very accommodating in regards to cripple seating.

I ordered pork belly cos I've always wanted to try a proper cooked one but I have to say, I think my version would give it a run for the money. Asia has had Yum Cha many times before and was pointing at this dish and that and making the waitresses scurry! Then she got the cranky one and I swear there was almost a fight. She was wanted her spring rolls cut and the lady wouldn't take the dish out of her hand. I finally grabbed it and put it down then the lady chopped it so hard it was flying off the plate and onto the table. Tensions were high. I think it started over a steamed bun or something.

After finishing with a mango pudding thing with condensed milk we both were ready to roll ourselves out. Alas I had to work off calories pushing my designer pram with my designer baby but it was probably a good thing, cos you can never be too skinny for fashion week!

Asia was learning all about being disabled and I was remembering heaps of my childhood as a helper to Grandma and Aunt Alice. At times it seemed that Asia had a temper similar to Alice's too, but there will still heaps of laughs.

We divided people into three categories. One group is the people who think being in a wheelchair is contagious and they don't dare look for fear of catching a limp or worse. They scurry pass, eyes averted, grateful not to have a pointing child asking them what happened to the lady's legs.

The next group is the I'M-OKAY-WITH-YOU GROUP. They are so keen to let you know that they are comfortable to talk to the leg mentals that they overcompensate with compassion, forced I UNDERSTAND YOU smiles and overly loud voices. Note: Hearing problems do not come hand in hand with leg issues. Feel free to speak in your normal voice. The final group is just the regular person who is totally fine with being an extra bit helpful, can make a few jokes, but isn't pitying or condescending. This included our bus driver, some lovely gentlemen on the street who helped with some of the tricky pushing and a lot of the Fashion Week staff. Who ever was in charge of employing people at the OPT did a bang up job for sure. Golf claps all around.

Having Asia as my partner in crime at Fashion Week was awesome. Large handbags? Small dogs? Pretty babies? Having my very own talking cripple left those fads in the dust. Everybody coveted my arm candy and I know of at least two people who tried to steal her. Luckily, I had showed her how to lock the breaks probably or who knows, the might still be in the possession of one particularly brazen gay boy!

Not only were we treated like royalty but basically we had people falling all over us with offers of help, table service for drinks and VIP entry to all the shows we saw. Plus we had started figuring out the gift bag thing and Asia's chair handles made great bag storage.

We went to see Foxton Danger, the Karen Neilsen Collection, Roopa Pemmaraju and Terri Donna. The Karen Neilsen Collection includes her cotton swimmers, from what I remember, but they were definitely in the catalogue. They are such super cute retro numbers! I haven't had a proper cotton bikini for years and have resorted to wearing cotton bras and knickers from Cotton On, but from someone who hates lycra swimmers with a passion (why pay for thrush?!?) the catalogue with the selection of cotton numbers was drool worthy. Roopa Pemmaraju does the most amazing takes on caftans I have ever seen. I so would have loved to own the caftan with the big sleeves that turned into pants at the bottom. I was so inspired, I think I would have whipped the Janome out on the bleachers if I'd had a power point and some fabric! Foxton Danger was quite bohemian but I think it was them that sent the models down barefoot, which I personally think is a mistake, but the clothes still looked like you'd feel good wearing them. Terri Donna was another swimwear designer. Her stuff was cheeky and fun, although it was very eighties and that era makes me just look like I never left high school. It was a bit Paris Hilton trashy, but I have never shied away from trash so I guess I can't really complain about it.

One thing I have to say is that Aussie designers sure can do resort and swimwear. I know it's part of the lifestyle here, but it's amazing to see all these amazing swimmers and bikinis that are so well cut, well made, creative and above all wearable. You could sip champagne by the pool as you admired the young fella cleaning it or you could hop on your surfboard and go play with the dolphins. Personally I'd be eyeing up the cabana boy as I slowly got pissed under the hot sun, but to each his own.

While getting our Fashion Week champers hit at the bar, I was lucky enough to be offered an armful of goody bags by the guy standing in front of me. We ended up chatting a while later on the sunny deck and he was a really nice guy. His name was Ranui and he was Chinese and his ex-girlfriend was doing the Terri Donna show. He was also doing the after party for the final show on Friday at the Beach Haus and offered to put us on the door. Stoked!

We also met a lovely young actress named Natasha Cunningham who Asia recognized from Underbelly. Now wasn't that a funny coincidence considering my night the evening before! I just noticed on her IMDB page that she was also in Bogan Pride, a show that I really enjoyed. And you should check it out cos you would probably enjoy it too. Yes, I'm talking to you Gregory H! I know you love your Aussie comedy and this one is pretty damn funny!

Natasha was at the show with one of the girls that had competed in the Aussie version of Project Runway. I love all forms of Project Runway - I've even watched the Filipino version and half of it is in Tagalog! Her name was Amber, but I didn't really know who she was until the last day but I'll have to rewatch the show to see what she was like on the show compared to "real life". You can read one person's opinion here. I'm going to say she had on a gorgeous frock.

Asia and I were knocking back free champagne quicker than you can say "drunk" so we decided it would be wise to leave before it got really dark and we'd have to figure out our lift home in an even worse condition.

Luckily for us, Heidi offered to come and pick us up, but then she got stuck in traffic, so Hamish and Kristy came and picked up the gimp. The wheelchair wouldn't fit in the boot of their wee red car, so I offered to take it back to Pete's Palace on the train.

I was huffing and puffing and regretting my decision as I dragged it up the tenth set of stairs at Museum Station while trying to answer Heidi's phone call, but at least the damn thing was empty! Heidi was pissing herself laughing as she drove up to meet me at Liverpool and Oxford and saw me crossing the intersection like some leopard print wearing gold digger who's lost her sugar daddy and doesn't know where to find him.

I folded the chair shut with a kick to the wheels and we zipped back to my room so I could change before we went to catch another show. I slipped into a little grey skirt with ruching up the front and back, a light grey t shirt, a black blazer and a pair of grey heels. The skirt fit like a sausage skin and I had to do some crazy steps to actually get up the stairs but neither that nor the crap traffic would stop us from getting to the start of the Alice McCall show.

I was pretty excited to see the Alice McCall show cos she was one of the few designers who I had heard of before going to Fashion Week. Her clothing was really like and pretty like a summer afternoon garden party. Not flashy or wild, but there is really nothing like cucumber and watercress sandwiches served with a Pimm's cocktail. Delicate with a hint of spice, the collection left me feeling pink cheeked and happy.

Heidi and I managed to score a goody bag each although someone stole the one off her seat just before we were about to jump rows as the lights dimmed. She grabbed the one on my seat and I asked a lady who had two for one of hers (how could she say no?!?) and Heidi and I both went home happy that we had each bagged a couple boxes of Veet Strips. Nothing says fashion like a hairless crotch.

We decided to head up to King's Cross to Cafe Roma as Heids had a penchant for pizza and we managed to convince the ailing Megan to join us. We ordered a pizza and a bottle of red and scored some cosy seats under a heater. The gossip flowed under the watchful eye of the owner. I say that with a bit of sarcasm because I think he was slightly cross eyed. But at least one of them was on us the whole time and he kept smiling/leering any time I caught one of his blinkers. We complimented him on his establishment as he passed and Heidi told him to take our finished plates. He must not have been insulted because he returned a few moments later with a shot of limoncello for each of us. I love limoncello. When we left we thanked him again and he repaid our compliment by kissing his way up my arm. Being the object of an aging crossed eyed cafe owner was no more enticing than being the token lesbian the night before, and it makes me feel grateful for not being single.

Heidi had to drive home but Meegs and I got a bottle of red and headed to her amazing little pad right beside El Alamein Fountain. It's a beautiful fountain in a seedy area and because you can hear it from inside Megan's apartment, so you always kinda feel like you need to pee.

We polished off our bottle of vino and were going through Meg's rack of designer clothes. She has exquisite taste and it was like going into a private boutique. I'm not sure if it was the booze talking but Megan offered to lend me a pretty silk Manning Cartel dress for the shows the next day.

Because we were out of booze and the shops were shut, we decided we should go back to Pete's and see what we could dig up there. Megan packed her Louis Vuitton overnight case and we headed down the street. Whoever designed that bag should be shot cos the thing rattled and rocked and wouldn't roll in a straight line and we both decided we hated the person who gave it to her for making our journey so laborious.

We were just crossing William Street to do our final two blocks up Bourke when disaster struck. My box, my little wooden box that I love, the little wooden box with the Chinese writing, my little wooden box so cute it makes the gays want to touch a box for the first time in their life BROKE! IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STREET. There I am, standing in the middle of traffic, handle in one hand, wonky Louis Vuitton in the other as I watch tampons roll under car wheels.

We finally got everything gathered up and trotted up the hill home. Of course we were back on the hooker end of Bourke St. and I was making pleasantries with the ladies without thinking.

"Lovely night for it!"

Christ, sometimes I just know it's a good thing I live in the country.

So Megs and I laid into the rest of the Stoneys and a sour tasting half bottle of red that had been sitting in a dark cupboard for far too long. We gossiped a bit more, solved all the world's problems and most of our own and then at about four in the morning called it a day and hit the sack.