Tag Archives: melbourne

Are you in Melbourne? Do you like reading? Do you like drinking wine? Does reading beautifully written books which touch on human rights issues make you compulsively foist them on everyone you’ve ever met and also want to change the world a little bit?

Come to Loop Bar tonight, then. Read&Rights book club is launching this evening and I’m giddy with excitement. 23 Meyers Place, 7pm. Wine and books and people who care about things.


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I’m not going to make excuses for my recent absence, but if I were, they would involve garbled references to the running of film festivals, foolishly self-catering for 150 people at the opening of said festival, my best friend helping me throw clothes all over my bedroom floor for a week, and certain days I’d prefer not to elaborate on, which involve an unnamed, irrational but crushing terror which causes me to creep back under my covers and stay there.

These images are some of the things that convince me to get out. They might not be great photographs, but the people and memories they contain mean that each time I take them out of their packet I can’t help grinning and laughing anew.

Cherry Tomatoes

St Kilda Community Garden, no-hands shots from the back of a hired bike, Tona and his best friends Vicky and Tom, sun on our backs, greasy paper bundles from the fish and chip shop, spinning circles and sour tomatoes.

Karaoke, Rain and Fish Burgers

“I just want you to liiiike me” – a night during which I finally met J’s uni friend Leona, and we confessed our mutual fear and subsequent relief that we actually really, really get along. A rained out Little Stevies concert, dumplings, sodden clothing, karaoke, arms around shoulders, droplets on the lens, Piano Man, three people asking what my costume was, hungry jacks in McDonalds and Leona dancing, alone, in the kitchen for three hours.

“Haa-app-ee Nu Yaaaar”

Painting strangers faces with eyeliner bought specifically, fairy lights, trailer trash, painting TinPan Orange, dancingjumpinglaughing, the guy from the Mediterranean food stall who shouted his blessings, accidental stalking, music and mud and memories.

Cask Wine in a Caravan

Banrock goon, dry feet, dark chocolate smeared on new India journals, and laughter at the Woodford Folk Festival. Early bird tickets are absurdly cheap for what will surely be the best week of your year.

All from disposable cameras, which when collected at Big W caused me to lose my shit in the middle of a shopping centre.

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Tom’s Red Lentil Dhal

While I was in Melbourne over the break I had the privilege of being introduced to somebody who is very important to somebody who is also very important to me. All you need to know about this guy is that he has flaming red hair, is an amazing cook and has a collection of very impressive accents. He was kind enough to share his dhal recipe with me, which I’ve been raving about for a few reasons. Mostly because it’s dirt cheap ($10 and it’s fed two of us for a week) and really tasty.

Ingredients, yo:
1kg red lentils
1 onion
2 tins of diced tomatoes
50g mustard seeds
Spices to taste– garam masala, chilli, curry powder, turmeric, cumin, cinnamon.
1.5l Chicken or vegetable stock
2 cloves garlic/2teaspoons crushed garlic
Butter, salt and pepper to taste.
Curd and chapattis, to serve.

What you need to do:
Soak lentils for approx 30min beforehand.
Put oil, onion, all spices and mustard seeds in a pan and cook until the seeds pop.
Add tomatoes, then lentils, stir until coated.
Add stock to cover.
Cook until soft, then add butter, salt and pepper, coriander and garlic.
Serve with chapattis and natural yoghurt or curd.

Will keep for approx a week. Go nuts and add other random food items in your cupboard, as well. 

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Piles of Books

J has left me in her apartment today while she’s at work. I’m in the centre of Melbourne and yet decided to spend the day holed up inside, for I had the very, very best of intentions regarding a certain ethics textbook and accompanying unwritten essay, and it was going well, up to a point. Wake up and snooze the alarm for a not-unreasonable length of time. Check. Rifle through J’s cupboards for some of her favourite clothes you haven’t been able to wear in months. Check. Tea and toast. Check. Pack bag with textbooks, laptop and other miscellany of productivity. Check. Sit on lounge to pull on Mum’s old leather boots, now your favourite boots. Check.

At this point I was distracted by the books on the carpet which J had thoughtfully arranged into various piles – ‘books to make you feel smarter’, ‘books to make you move to Melbourne’, ‘books to help you save money’, and ‘happy happy fiction time’. And so, down the perilous slope I went. With glee.

Day spent reading various snippets of The Polysyllabic Spree, Stasiland, McSweeneys and the latest Frankie. Check.

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