I want to write about yesterday because there was a lot in it, and it occurred to me at some point that many days pass in which I do a lot of things, and most often I have forgotten that they happened by the time a couple of months have gone by. This didn’t happen so much in Germany because a) I took a lot of photographs and even wrote things down sometimes and b) there was always a group of people around me who were living very closely associated lives, and who had a lot of shared memories, and who enjoyed reliving those memories regularly (sometimes as we were in the business of creating new ones).
So yesterday I woke up early after a night of games and wine, and trotted over to my second home where Phoebe made homemade baked beans, scrambled eggs and toast for Bridie, Howie and I, and we discussed the night’s events. I sat drowsily in an armchair and watched Black Books with Howie and Phoebe until about 11.30, at which point I briefly made tentative plans with B to meet up later in the day, and then went to catch a bus (stopping momentarily in Gleebooks’ second hand store to see if they had any John Green books, and they didn’t).
I got on a bus into the city, and then another one up to the North Shore (during which I started writing a letter), and followed my phone’s directions to Lizzie and Tom’s new digs, only to realise as I got off the bus that they lived about a block away from Lauren’s house and so I didn’t really need my phone after all. Lizzie came down to meet me at the door and then we sat in their living room and painted our nails, and Tom came in to watch AFL on mute, and we talked about jobs and media and whether our degrees were useful. Lizzie was about to get on a (fancy) train to the Hunter Valley, so I left some of the baked goods Bridie and Phoebe had given me with Tom, to tide him over until her return. Lizzie and I got on yet another bus back into the city.
I dropped into Kinokuniya, one of the happiest places in Sydney, to reward myself for working so hard lately by buying The Fault in Our Stars, because recently I’ve become ALL ABOUT John Green’s stuff (thanks to, as with many geeky things in my life, Lauren again, although I’m not even sure I’ve mentioned this to her yet). Then I got kind of lost in bookstore-euphoria and had to drag myself bodily from the store and out onto the street and onto my fourth bus of the day back to my university to print some concert tickets. I got on the fifth bus from there to Oxford St and Coco Cubano, where I met Fi and Bridie for drinks and became exasperated with a waitress and was very ungenerous in my private assessment of her, something I immediately regretted upon leaving the store because she was very nice on the way out. I now kind of wish I could go back to that moment and apologise to her for being obnoxious, and maybe I will next time we go there.
In any case Fi went off to see Spiderman and Bridie and I went to the Brighton Up bar to get another drink and wait for Raphi. He arrived, Bridie left for home, Raphi and I got some extremely cheap wine to drink and went and sat in an alley nearby and listened to music to get ourselves in the right mood for the concert. I kept looking nervously at headlights going past, because I am much more nervy about breaking rules here than overseas where I can plead ignorance. Or where, in fact, it’s not breaking the rules to be drinking wine outside, something I miss doing. When, an hour or so later, we got back to Oxford St, there was a line outside the venue already. I was getting more excited. We waited in line, got “WTF” stamped across our wrists, headed for the bar. I tried a spiced rum with coke and lime, and it was awesome so I decided to stick with that for the rest of the night.
About two minutes after arriving I spotted a lineup list, and realised my friends The Falls were the first support act for the night, and was thrilled because I’d get to see them, and then got really excited when it dawned on me that this was a really big break for them. Courtney arrived, and she, Raphi and I grabbed spots against the stage as The Falls started playing, where I spent half an hour trying to catch Melinda’s eye and only succeeded as she was heading off stage. We chatted happily for a while, and then Tom from The Trouble with Templeton played a solo set list and blew us away (I’d never heard of him/them before). Raphi and I agreed immediately that he sounded a lot like The Tallest Man on Earth, and I made friends with a photographer named Stefan who was standing next to me, and we compared notes on the music. Afterwards Courtney and I went and met Tom, who signed the CD I’d just bought (along with an early release of The Falls’ new EP) and was generally a really lovely guy. I said I hoped he’d play at Folk Club sometime, but found out later he’s from Brisbane so maybe that’s a little tricky.
AND THEN. Of Monsters and Men! Came on stage! And were! Flipping! Incredible! I was actually perched on the edge of the stage when they came on, and kept expecting someone to tell me off, but nobody did so I remained sitting on the stage for their whole set. It was unbelievably fun. I sang and screamed myself hoarse, and got a grin from Ragnar, and kept ducking out of the way of other people’s photographs. Afterwards I found Melinda again and tipsily enthused some more, briefly caught Simon and congratulated him, hung out with Courtney while Raphi stalked the band for a while, and then the three of us caught a taxi home. We sat up for a couple of hours playing ukulele and guitar and singing, and finally I pleaded exhaustion and collapsed into bed, feeling the kind of joyful tiredness that comes after a day in which every minute has been put to some use.