Friday, October 21, 2016

Sad memorial at ANAM

Yesterday was a quiet day at home for me while Peter went into town for lunch with Robin S. where they had a good meal at a new Italian joint with the suits. In the evening, we headed for Clarendon Street in South Melbourne. However, the trams were diverted at the casino, so we had to catch a short cab ride to the Salon de Sushi where we had another good and quick meal. They are very friendly (apparently a lot of ANAM students get food there) and provide good, fresh food. We then went to ANAM at the old South Melbourne Town Hall. It was a concert honouring four Jewish composers murdered by the Nazis. They were Pavel Haas, Erwin Schulhoff and Gideon Klein, all Czechs, and Leo Smit, Dutch. The music was far from gloomy. The other good thing was, apart from two items with piano, the instruments were all winds. The three 'guest' teachers are all wind soloists in their respective orchestras and were included in the players. Schulhoff's Flute Sonata was brilliantly played by Silvia Careddu, flute and Alexander Waite, an ANAM student, piano but the whole concert was splendid finishing with an energetic divertimento for wind octet reconstructed from sketches by Gideon Klein. The pairs of oboes, clarinets, bassoons and horns made for a stirring finale.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

The good, the bad and the very delicious

Yesterday, I had to get up early to go to the Club (Royal Melbourne Hospital) for my monitoring, this time by Maxillo-Facial. I got there as scheduled at 8.45, clutching my yummy chocolate milkshake from downstairs. I ran out of novel around 10.30am and was finally seen for a couple of minutes at 10.45am. There is surely no need to ask you to be there at 8.45 when they know they won't get up to you for two hours. The young doctor I saw explained the difference between Maxillo-Facial and ENT. 'Maxillo-Facial specialise in bones, ENT in tissue or more or less.' 'Why do I need to see both?' 'Each speciality comes with a different emphasis. See you in three months.' Sigh. However, he did find out the name of a spray which could ease my dry mouth which has occurred since the op. in February and got worse. (He got the name wrong but the pharmacist divined the correct one.) I spoke to the publisher about the novel report later. Then in the evening, Peter and I went to a Scion winery dinner at Anada, the Spanish restaurant in Gertrude Street. It was a superb five-course meal (the jamon, the sardines and the quail were exceptional) and the wines were wonderful and very well-matched with the food. Rolly, from Scion, told us how the wines were made very succinctly and pungently. We retired replete.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Fence hole

Yesterday, I finished off the novel report and sent it off to the publisher. As well, the fence folk returned to punch a hole in the new fence so the gasman can read the meter when we're not here. I doubt it will accommodate the water meter reader as well. In the evening, Peter made a delicious chicken Thai curry. It was NOT in honour of the dead Thai king.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Fence finished, novel nearly

Today, the fence man came to finish off the gate. He was worried about using his angle grinder as he smelt gas in the backyard, but he did it anyway after damping down the gas meter with a rag. In the arvo, Peter got the gas people to come and he moved the meter, put in a new one to stop the leak. Ho hum! Now we have a new fence and a new gas meter. Meanwhile, I've nearly finished the report on the novel which I'll probably do tomorrow. We had beer battered fish for dinner which I cooked: flathead from Lakes Entrance, not cheap but delicious.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Ancient Rain

On Saturday, Peter and I picked up Delila the Corolla and went to Victoria Gardens for our usual shopping, though this time on Saturday as the fence fixers were here on Friday, building a new back fence. They'll finish on Monday. Home again for chorizo lunch. Then in the evening, we went to the Arts Centre and had a good meal at Barre, their restaurant where we ran across Kerry B. and Janelle H. Kerry and others (Neil D. etc.) are busily rehearsing to be supernumeraries or warm props in the upcoming Ring Cycle. We then went to the Playhouse to see 'Ancient Rain', a collection of Irish poems set to music by Paul Kelly, Camille O'Sullivan and pianist Feargal Murray. They were joined by Paul Byrne, drums and percussion, Dan Kelly, electric guitar and Sokol Koka, cello. It was a very affecting performance and powerful, though as I said, 'Not much of a cheer-up' and one departing audience member said, 'No wonder they took to the drink.'

Friday, October 14, 2016

Work and play

The last few days I've been reading and reporting on the new novel. In the meantime, on Wednesday, Peter and I had lunch with Alexis W. at Moat (underneath the Melbourne Writers' Centre). It was a good meal in the bowels of the State Library but better was the magging, catching up on what we had all been doing. On Thursday, Peter went in the arvo to his gallery U3A course, this time to Hawthorn Town Hall to what sounds like a very good exhibition on Louis Kahan. Early in the evening, we went to the Recital Centre for 'Buried Country', a truly impressive pot-pourri of Aboriginal country music. Performers included iconic elders Roger Knox, Auriel Andrew and L.J. Hill, Central Desert legend Warren H Williams, and younger artists such as Leah Flanagan, Luke Peacock and James Henry. It was written and directed by Clinton Walker with musical director, Brendan Gallagher. It was inspiring and finished with Jimmy Little's grandson leading the whole cast in 'Telephone to Glory'. Everyone sang along, some (like me) without much conviction. We then went to Yoyogi for the first time since we got back. It was a cheap and cheerful as usual.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Local council elections

Another quiet day at home yesterday with a bit of reading of a new novel (for report). In the early evening, Peter and I went to the Fitzroy Town Hall for a meeting organised by the Fitzroy Residents' Association to meet the candidates in the upcoming elections. There were 18 of them (not all) for two wards only (Langridge, ours plus Nicholls which is North Fitzroy). It was well moderated by Tom Elliott, local resident and son of John. The ability to see and hear the candidates was very helpful and I've now made up a very eclectic list for myself of a mix of Labor, Socialists, Greens and one independent. Voting is like manure; it's no good unless you spread it around. Congrats to the FRA for organising it and to Tom Elliott for a very good job of compering in very trying circumstances. One local identity castigated him for being John Elliott's son, which he can hardly help.