izmeina: (circle serpent)
A quick squiggle from Nanoland. This has been the strangest Camp Nano in the last few years and bears an uncanny resemblance to the adventures of August 2012

The map was all rolled out and ready to go. The path should have been pretty easy. Usually Camp Nano is the perfect occasion to get in a bit of practice in writing and brainstorming by grabbing a pack of Devil’s playing cards as writing prompts then churning through them slowly and steadily in the hope of generating as many ideas and leads as possible for the big event in November.

But this time I decided to do things a bit differently. Instead of laying the foundations for a new project, would devote this time to adding more words to last November’s zero draft. All the serpent needed to do was to add a whole bunch of new scenes and try to steer the story into some relatively coherent shape.

The Art of the Steal was about a devil doing deals and offering numerous political fixes in exchange for souls to fill his bright shiny Celebrity trophy cabinet.

It should have been so easy since Dodgy Donald and his minions have exceeded even the worst of expectations.
Between Twitter snippets and even just following the daily news here, there is bucket loads of raw material so it should have been possible to almost go in zombie mode.

But the inner serpent is not playing nicely.

Of course there have been quite a few distractions in the last few months.

Playing with the Pensieve )
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie has finally slinked out of the dungeons. The days of slaving over a steaming keyboard are now over. I lingered for a day or so before trading in the pretty green skin for the purple banner of Nanowrimo victory.

The slow and steady plodding has finally paid off. The muses dropped by once or twice during the whole first three weeks before gate crashing the party on Monday. They've been hanging around ever since providing inspiration from the unlikeliest places.

So much nasty awful stuff has been going on in the real world. They made my own attempts at inventing a nihilistic death cult look exceedingly pathetic indeed. It's just as well the wannabee writers are not running the world. It would be a whole lot worse than it already is.

After all "Only Trouble is interesting"

I gave in to the temptation of buying a particularly wicked and twisted collection of writing prompts but still not worked out how to get the thing out of the Kindle Cloud and on to the crappy little tablet.

I will be saving this special stash of nasties for the new year since it would only have been a distraction in November.

Having proved that the inner serpent can churn out the words given a deadline, the next step is to master the dark art of finishing stuff and putting it out there. The inner critic is not amused at that appalling idea.

So now it's time to go sniffing, snooping and shopping in MOOC land again. This time last year I had started a fascinating course on Terrorism and Counter terrorism but had to drop it half way due to unexpected events and overseas adventures.

So many courses are now available all year round to do at your own pace including that one but one thing I have learned from Nanowrimo is that there's nothing quite so motivating as an external deadline.

Just slinked over to Coursera to take a quick peek. Looks like they've nuked all the old records from the golden days of the Freebies. (They didn't but just made them very hard to find)

Oh well. It was fun while it lasted.
izmeina: a snippet of Escher's circle of serpents (escher)
Izzie has finally slinked out of the dungeons. The days of slaving over a steaming keyboard are now over. I lingered for a day or so before trading in the pretty green skin for the purple banner of Nanowrimo victory.

The slow and steady plodding has finally paid off. The muses dropped by once or twice during the whole first three weeks before gate crashing the party on Monday. They've been hanging around ever since providing inspiration from the unlikeliest places.

So much nasty awful stuff has been going on in the real world. They made my own attempts at inventing a nihilistic death cult look exceedingly pathetic indeed. It's just as well the wannabee writers are not running the world. It would be a whole lot worse than it already is.

After all "Only Trouble is interesting"

I gave in to the temptation of buying a particularly wicked and twisted collection of writing prompts but still not worked out how to get the thing out of the Kindle Cloud and on to the crappy little tablet.

I will be saving this special stash of nasties for the new year since it would only have been a distraction in November.

Having proved that the inner serpent can churn out the words given a deadline, the next step is to master the dark art of finishing stuff and putting it out there. The inner critic is not amused at that appalling idea.

So now it's time to go sniffing, snooping and shopping in MOOC land again. This time last year I had started a fascinating course on Terrorism and Counter terrorism but had to drop it half way due to unexpected events and overseas adventures.

So many courses are now available all year round to do at your own pace including that one but one thing I have learned from Nanowrimo is that there's nothing quite so motivating as an external deadline.

Just slinked over to Coursera to take a quick peek. Looks like they've nuked all the old records from the golden days of the Freebies. (They didn't but just made them very hard to find)

Oh well. It was fun while it lasted.
izmeina: (Don't panic)
It's strange to think that ten years ago I had a laptop but no internet but still managed to post far more than now when Cyberia is just a couple of clicks away. Even October 2014 had more posts than this month and back then there was the rather significant distraction of an online Python programming course which often had this serpent slaving over a hot keyboard at 2 in the morning desperately tweeking some sad and pathetic attempt at the weekly assignments.

This year there is the rather less rigorous "Science of Happiness" online course which consists of a whole lot of videos and a bunch of multiple choice questions each week.
I'm 4 weeks behind schedule but as everything is due by 24th November it is not yet a big deal. The moral of the story is that no matter how good one's intentions and willingness to learn, serpent nature dictates that homework will be submitted as near to the deadline as possible.

I've since discovered that the Edx certificates proclaim that a student has passed the requirements of such and such a course without giving details of the actual grade. Pity because I was rather amused by the 110% I got in the Superheroes and popular culture course. That magnificent number is nowhere to be seen on the certificate.

Soon the latest Nanowrimo adventure begins and there will be even less squiggling in Cyberia during November unless I set aside a section for warm ups.

In the meantime, still searching for the perfect Nano cafe for squiggling, plotting and planning away from the Big Mac keyboard.
izmeina: (Don't panic)
It's strange to think that ten years ago I had a laptop but no internet but still managed to post far more than now when Cyberia is just a couple of clicks away. Even October 2014 had more posts than this month and back then there was the rather significant distraction of an online Python programming course which often had this serpent slaving over a hot keyboard at 2 in the morning desperately tweeking some sad and pathetic attempt at the weekly assignments.

This year there is the rather less rigorous "Science of Happiness" online course which consists of a whole lot of videos and a bunch of multiple choice questions each week.
I'm 4 weeks behind schedule but as everything is due by 24th November it is not yet a big deal. The moral of the story is that no matter how good one's intentions and willingness to learn, serpent nature dictates that homework will be submitted as near to the deadline as possible.

I've since discovered that the Edx certificates proclaim that a student has passed the requirements of such and such a course without giving details of the actual grade. Pity because I was rather amused by the 110% I got in the Superheroes and popular culture course. That magnificent number is nowhere to be seen on the certificate.

Soon the latest Nanowrimo adventure begins and there will be even less squiggling in Cyberia during November unless I set aside a section for warm ups.

In the meantime, still searching for the perfect Nano cafe for squiggling, plotting and planning away from the Big Mac keyboard.
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie has been a busy serpent. There was so much stuff going on in April. All sorts of government gossip and a dreaded certain centenary and a whole bunch of gardening to be done. For most of the month the weather was absolutely gorgeous. It was sunny but not too hot and most of the time there was the delicate light that invites quiet contemplation, pottering amongst the weeds and general contentment with the universe.

Also during two weeks of April there was an invasion of artists from all over the world adorning the city walls with gorgeous murals. Some were so large that the artists used cherry pickers. It was wonderful fun wandering around with the lists and ticking each item off one by one. Since a lot of the walls are a bit off the beaten track and hiding in quirky corners it was a most fascinating way of seeing the suburbs.
One proved to be very inspirational indeed.

creepy crawly Cthulhu

Then there was the annual ritual of Camp Nanowrimo for folks who do not want to wait until November to squiggle their stories. So that’s where all the words have been going the last month. Was slacking a bit going for a goal of 33,333 words for the month rather than the usual April quota of 50,000. Just been for a quick visit over at the camp cabins. These are groups of a dozen or so participants who share a ‘campfire’ where they can post snippets of story gossip, offer ideas or encouragement to each other. Well that is the theory anyway.

April Foolishness )
izmeina: a spooky blue Cthulhu brandishing wicked weapons (pen and paintbrush) (squid)
Izzie has been a busy serpent. There was so much stuff going on in April. All sorts of government gossip and a dreaded certain centenary and a whole bunch of gardening to be done. For most of the month the weather was absolutely gorgeous. It was sunny but not too hot and most of the time there was the delicate light that invites quiet contemplation, pottering amongst the weeds and general contentment with the universe.

Also during two weeks of April there was an invasion of artists from all over the world adorning the city walls with gorgeous murals. Some were so large that the artists used cherry pickers. It was wonderful fun wandering around with the lists and ticking each item off one by one. Since a lot of the walls are a bit off the beaten track and hiding in quirky corners it was a most fascinating way of seeing the suburbs.
One proved to be very inspirational indeed.

creepy crawly Cthulhu

Then there was the annual ritual of Camp Nanowrimo for folks who do not want to wait until November to squiggle their stories. So that’s where all the words have been going the last month. Was slacking a bit going for a goal of 33,333 words for the month rather than the usual April quota of 50,000. Just been for a quick visit over at the camp cabins. These are groups of a dozen or so participants who share a ‘campfire’ where they can post snippets of story gossip, offer ideas or encouragement to each other. Well that is the theory anyway.

April Foolishness )
izmeina: (Default)
Some simple serpent musings while slinking at the nano campfire toasting a toad on a stick. Here’s hoping the serpent doesn’t get food poisoning. Toads are such tricksy toxic creatures that no amount of precautions are completely fool proof.

The serpent’s favourite saying of all time just has to be “The map is not the territory” It appeals to the introvert’s eternal questioning of the nature of reality and insanity and even to the toxic paper work culture where nothing has happened unless it is documented documented and documented to death

This particular map was made way back in January this year with the shuffling of a tarot deck. Twenty six stories with three cards each and no returns so every single card made an appearance at some stage or other. This is rather different from the usual story structure of a prologue and 21 chapters each based on the major arcana in order. Cards 8 and 11 get ordered according to what works best for a particular story but usually Strength works out best as 8 and Justice as 11 which also seems to work well with the cluster of shit sandwiches that usually make an appearance from chapters 10 to 16.

That pattern of course is what we use in November. Camp Nano is for playing the fool, doing rebellious and adventurous stuff and basically using the opportunity to brainstorm ideas for the November novel. Last time camp nano squiggling did not even make any attempts at producing stories. It was simply a run through a particularly inspiring deck from the point of view of creating characters and the odd plot point. When that did not produce the requisite word count simply grabbed another one and started with the Fool all the way some 77 cards later to the King of Pentacles

This year was supposed to concentrate on short stories. The serpent pattern for all nano adventures has been to crash around two thirds of the way through a story and never quite complete it. Always made the word count but could never quite conquer the nuts and bolts of story structure. Well of course it was ridiculously stupid to dive in at the deep end with a fifty thousand word story having never done such a thing before. This year would be dedicated to the art of finishing things. Twenty six stories should provide sufficient practice in theory

The Map is not the territory )
izmeina: Strange Spiral Clock (Time Turner)
Some simple serpent musings while slinking at the nano campfire toasting a toad on a stick. Here’s hoping the serpent doesn’t get food poisoning. Toads are such tricksy toxic creatures that no amount of precautions are completely fool proof.

The serpent’s favourite saying of all time just has to be “The map is not the territory” It appeals to the introvert’s eternal questioning of the nature of reality and insanity and even to the toxic paper work culture where nothing has happened unless it is documented documented and documented to death

This particular map was made way back in January this year with the shuffling of a tarot deck. Twenty six stories with three cards each and no returns so every single card made an appearance at some stage or other. This is rather different from the usual story structure of a prologue and 21 chapters each based on the major arcana in order. Cards 8 and 11 get ordered according to what works best for a particular story but usually Strength works out best as 8 and Justice as 11 which also seems to work well with the cluster of shit sandwiches that usually make an appearance from chapters 10 to 16.

That pattern of course is what we use in November. Camp Nano is for playing the fool, doing rebellious and adventurous stuff and basically using the opportunity to brainstorm ideas for the November novel. Last time camp nano squiggling did not even make any attempts at producing stories. It was simply a run through a particularly inspiring deck from the point of view of creating characters and the odd plot point. When that did not produce the requisite word count simply grabbed another one and started with the Fool all the way some 77 cards later to the King of Pentacles

This year was supposed to concentrate on short stories. The serpent pattern for all nano adventures has been to crash around two thirds of the way through a story and never quite complete it. Always made the word count but could never quite conquer the nuts and bolts of story structure. Well of course it was ridiculously stupid to dive in at the deep end with a fifty thousand word story having never done such a thing before. This year would be dedicated to the art of finishing things. Twenty six stories should provide sufficient practice in theory

The Map is not the territory )
izmeina: (Default)
Had an ever so lazy day this morning slinking about in the Lair, soaking up the sunshine and meeting an old friend from the mad house that is the day job. Sybil was one of the wiser rats who got out of the sinking ship sooner rather than later.

She is ever so amused and disgusted by the latest dramas there. But that is a story for another time and place. Later the Izzie returned to the Lair and decided to spend a few hours snoozing outside in the sunshine and watching the rainbow lorikeets raiding the eucalyptus flowers.
It was also good to see that the Tuscan kale planted some three weeks ago has finally decided to sprout. They are now onto their first set of real leaves and within three weeks should be feasting on the green goodness. Some we will let go to seed and save them for next year.

The original plan was to slink into the city around 4pm for a coffee crawl and to take a peek at the new Winter Festival at the town hall. The first time was the last Friday of June. Was feeling a bit tired and claustrophobic so just could not get into the right mood.

Lingered a bit longer in the lair soaking up the last rays of sunshine before catching a bus to the city just before 5pm. Paid a visit to the latest Nanowrimo cafe. This time no cards and no brainstorming simply coffee and the daily paper. Wanted to get the daily fix of the letters page and cartoon, the weekly gardening features and the latest drama from the murder trial of the decade.

Stayed rather longer than intended and ended up with only 30 minutes until the official ending of the winter festival. Silly really since it is only once a month and the cafe is open six days a week.

Was still somewhat agitated but nowhere as bad as last time. The most striking thing apart from the dark sky and crisp cold evening was the heavenly aromas drifting around the town hall. Aside from the MacDonalds and assorted monstrous carbuncles lining the other side of Hay Street it would be very easy to believe that this was Nuremburg, Berlin, Buxtehude or a hundred little towns or cities anywhere in Germany. There was hot chocolate, truffles, bratwurst and gluhwein and even the wood fired baker with offerings of Gugelhopf, assorted baguettes, pies and organic sour dough bread was also German. There were also Brazilian Churros - sort of sickly sweet doughnuts filled with caramel or chocolate, crepes and Moroccan dips and delicious tomato sauce and egg offerings with sausages tossed in for an extra three silver sickles.

Resisted the temptation to indulge which was not too difficult as most of the stalls were packing up by that time but it was nice to linger and inhale the intoxicating fragrances. Quite astonishing how the smell of mulled wine and sizzling sausages and onions could conjure up places and memories from half way around the world and more than twenty years ago in time.

Winterland in Oz )
izmeina: A cute cartoon critter with a bag and a teapot on his head (The Fool)
Had an ever so lazy day this morning slinking about in the Lair, soaking up the sunshine and meeting an old friend from the mad house that is the day job. Sybil was one of the wiser rats who got out of the sinking ship sooner rather than later.

She is ever so amused and disgusted by the latest dramas there. But that is a story for another time and place. Later the Izzie returned to the Lair and decided to spend a few hours snoozing outside in the sunshine and watching the rainbow lorikeets raiding the eucalyptus flowers.
It was also good to see that the Tuscan kale planted some three weeks ago has finally decided to sprout. They are now onto their first set of real leaves and within three weeks should be feasting on the green goodness. Some we will let go to seed and save them for next year.

The original plan was to slink into the city around 4pm for a coffee crawl and to take a peek at the new Winter Festival at the town hall. The first time was the last Friday of June. Was feeling a bit tired and claustrophobic so just could not get into the right mood.

Lingered a bit longer in the lair soaking up the last rays of sunshine before catching a bus to the city just before 5pm. Paid a visit to the latest Nanowrimo cafe. This time no cards and no brainstorming simply coffee and the daily paper. Wanted to get the daily fix of the letters page and cartoon, the weekly gardening features and the latest drama from the murder trial of the decade.

Stayed rather longer than intended and ended up with only 30 minutes until the official ending of the winter festival. Silly really since it is only once a month and the cafe is open six days a week.

Was still somewhat agitated but nowhere as bad as last time. The most striking thing apart from the dark sky and crisp cold evening was the heavenly aromas drifting around the town hall. Aside from the MacDonalds and assorted monstrous carbuncles lining the other side of Hay Street it would be very easy to believe that this was Nuremburg, Berlin, Buxtehude or a hundred little towns or cities anywhere in Germany. There was hot chocolate, truffles, bratwurst and gluhwein and even the wood fired baker with offerings of Gugelhopf, assorted baguettes, pies and organic sour dough bread was also German. There were also Brazilian Churros - sort of sickly sweet doughnuts filled with caramel or chocolate, crepes and Moroccan dips and delicious tomato sauce and egg offerings with sausages tossed in for an extra three silver sickles.

Resisted the temptation to indulge which was not too difficult as most of the stalls were packing up by that time but it was nice to linger and inhale the intoxicating fragrances. Quite astonishing how the smell of mulled wine and sizzling sausages and onions could conjure up places and memories from half way around the world and more than twenty years ago in time.

Winterland in Oz )
izmeina: (Default)
It's been a lucky day for the serpent outside of the work front.

The sun was shining and it was a glorious cold, crisp and crunchy day. Just the sort of weather to make a critter feel awake and alive

Although after last night's amazing and fascinating documentary about modern mummies and some newly discovered secrets about this most ancient of arts, was still feeling a bit creeped out

Torquay's Tutankhamen

Even dreamed of the tea lady at work walking around with a trolley of zombie juice.

But today is the day that the dark brown A-Z index book retires to the Lair upstairs to take its rightful place next to the Big Mac
It has served the serpent well and is now too precious to be let out and about

A repository for all sorts of brain storming, at least 500 story titles and all of the most promising plot lines and ideas for August's alphabetical nanowrimo adventure, it is the perfect spot for the muses of the month to reside and inspire this serpent
izmeina: (Dementor)
It's been a lucky day for the serpent outside of the work front.

The sun was shining and it was a glorious cold, crisp and crunchy day. Just the sort of weather to make a critter feel awake and alive

Although after last night's amazing and fascinating documentary about modern mummies and some newly discovered secrets about this most ancient of arts, was still feeling a bit creeped out

Torquay's Tutankhamen

Even dreamed of the tea lady at work walking around with a trolley of zombie juice.

But today is the day that the dark brown A-Z index book retires to the Lair upstairs to take its rightful place next to the Big Mac
It has served the serpent well and is now too precious to be let out and about

A repository for all sorts of brain storming, at least 500 story titles and all of the most promising plot lines and ideas for August's alphabetical nanowrimo adventure, it is the perfect spot for the muses of the month to reside and inspire this serpent
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie is in a strange place. Just finished on Friday the last page of a camel leather journal with a rose quartz stone inset on the cover and hand made paper on the inside. Gorgeous but not friendly to emerald ink or quick quotes quills. It was like writing on quicksand

It was our last day of the fringe binge. The actual festival finished on Sunday but due to work commitments, Friday was our last day of festivities
All those plays and cabaret shows meant that visits to Cyberia were far and few between and most squiggling got done offline in the leather note book. But now there is just over a whole week between it and the serpent’s very sacred day of Wednesday 29th February. This day is worthy of the first page in a bright shiny new notebook preferably at Cottesloe Beach while listening to This Mortal Coil’s “Song to the Siren” at sunset and reminiscing about the last Wednesday 29th February way back in 1984

So this week will be hopefully devoted to catching up in Cyberia. The last few weeks have been a total sensory overload, so much so that the Izzie was sometimes almost psycho.
Just a quick count, must have been 16 or so shows in the space of 21 days. Four of those were booked in advance and the rest were last minute cheap tickets.
With this particular festival the locations were as much a star attraction in their own right as the shows. Izzie is a strange creature with an unusual habit of adopting what we call ‘sacred sites’ for want of a better word. It turns out that the old treasury buildings were very high on the list. This serpent would even go to see George Bush or John Howard if they were to make an appearance in such a place. Lucky that most of the performers turned out to be of a much much higher standard than those two

It turned out that the first very much anticipated event got ruined due to the nasty 42 celsius sizzling stinker of a day. Returned the following Monday not to attend a show but to just lurk and linger in the Treasure Chest and absorb the magical aura of this historical location. Monday nights are very quiet in downtown Dursleyville and it was wonderful just sitting around on the old crates sipping a glass of Solo with ice and reading “Chamber of Secrets”. The wines were far too decadent in price to indulge. But we would save such indulgences for the very last week

Ended up not enjoying some very good shows due to irrational panic attacks and sensory overload or just plain sizzling stinking hot horrid days.
Sometimes would just go to the kitschy box office caravan and book a show based less on the content and more on the location. After three or four shows in the Treasury Cabaret, got the craving to visit the old postal hall which was the original post office and the point from which all distances in Dursleyville are measured.
Just walking down the very long labyrinthine entrance past corridors and strange halls plastered with fringe posters and mysterious passageways was an adventure in itself. The show “This is what we do for a living” was good too as was the chance to snoop and slink a bit later. Decided not to do the mad rush for the bus at 10.15 but to lurk and linger and soak up the spookiness
Was back in the same place on Friday for two shows with wonderful titles “She dances in the dark” and “City of Shadows”

The latter starred Rachael Dease - a local version of Lisa Gerrard and a sort of chamber orchestra with spooky strings. It was based on pictures of crime scenes and suspects from Sydney in the 1920s. The music was ethereal, spooky and beautiful but there did not seem to be any story or structure. Seen some of the pictures before in an exhibition about femme fatales at the turn of the century. Some of the scenes seemed suspiciously reminiscent of the old treasury itself with bodies on stair cases or in corridors and elegant archways. Was strategically located near a doorway bearing the script “Newspaper House” and an archway hiding a few desks and cubicles.

They were a bit over the top with all the bodies and mug shots. Every single one of those pictures could be the basis for a fascinating story but there were so many that it was serious sensory overload. Particularly fascinating were all those 1920s car crash scenes with the ancient vehicles
The one thing missing from the festival was a ghost tour, spooky stories tale of these amazing old buildings and goblin lurking grounds. Turned out there was some such thing in the south west wing which had sold out ages ago. It was called Pollyanna. Not a happy clappy story as you would think from the title but a story of a girl murdered at her birthday party and all the audience got to play detective wandering from room to room deep in the heart of goblin territory

But the two best shows of all turned out not to be on the goblins territory at all. One was in the Spiegeltent which is an amazing relic from the 1920s. Izzie just loves art deco kitsch. It was Bunga bunga Burlesqueconi starring three drag queens and a Sylvio Berlesconi impersonator with an uncanny resemblance to Paul Keating.
There was another crap show there last Monday called “Glamazonian” Normal price was $25 which was the same as BBB. Izzie got cheap tix for $15. But it was worth it just to get our nose inside this amazing glamorous tent.
Next time the serpent slinks about in the city, the old treasury buildings will be off limits. Will not be able to sit there and sip a plastic glass of Vinacious “Snake Charmer” Shiraz and offer ickle Wormtail a sip like last Wednesday.
There is still the yuppie festival gardens done up in Steam punk style. But that is a tale for another day
izmeina: (Crazy)
Izzie is in a strange place. Just finished on Friday the last page of a camel leather journal with a rose quartz stone inset on the cover and hand made paper on the inside. Gorgeous but not friendly to emerald ink or quick quotes quills. It was like writing on quicksand

It was our last day of the fringe binge. The actual festival finished on Sunday but due to work commitments, Friday was our last day of festivities
All those plays and cabaret shows meant that visits to Cyberia were far and few between and most squiggling got done offline in the leather note book. But now there is just over a whole week between it and the serpent’s very sacred day of Wednesday 29th February. This day is worthy of the first page in a bright shiny new notebook preferably at Cottesloe Beach while listening to This Mortal Coil’s “Song to the Siren” at sunset and reminiscing about the last Wednesday 29th February way back in 1984

So this week will be hopefully devoted to catching up in Cyberia. The last few weeks have been a total sensory overload, so much so that the Izzie was sometimes almost psycho.
Just a quick count, must have been 16 or so shows in the space of 21 days. Four of those were booked in advance and the rest were last minute cheap tickets.
With this particular festival the locations were as much a star attraction in their own right as the shows. Izzie is a strange creature with an unusual habit of adopting what we call ‘sacred sites’ for want of a better word. It turns out that the old treasury buildings were very high on the list. This serpent would even go to see George Bush or John Howard if they were to make an appearance in such a place. Lucky that most of the performers turned out to be of a much much higher standard than those two

It turned out that the first very much anticipated event got ruined due to the nasty 42 celsius sizzling stinker of a day. Returned the following Monday not to attend a show but to just lurk and linger in the Treasure Chest and absorb the magical aura of this historical location. Monday nights are very quiet in downtown Dursleyville and it was wonderful just sitting around on the old crates sipping a glass of Solo with ice and reading “Chamber of Secrets”. The wines were far too decadent in price to indulge. But we would save such indulgences for the very last week

Ended up not enjoying some very good shows due to irrational panic attacks and sensory overload or just plain sizzling stinking hot horrid days.
Sometimes would just go to the kitschy box office caravan and book a show based less on the content and more on the location. After three or four shows in the Treasury Cabaret, got the craving to visit the old postal hall which was the original post office and the point from which all distances in Dursleyville are measured.
Just walking down the very long labyrinthine entrance past corridors and strange halls plastered with fringe posters and mysterious passageways was an adventure in itself. The show “This is what we do for a living” was good too as was the chance to snoop and slink a bit later. Decided not to do the mad rush for the bus at 10.15 but to lurk and linger and soak up the spookiness
Was back in the same place on Friday for two shows with wonderful titles “She dances in the dark” and “City of Shadows”

The latter starred Rachael Dease - a local version of Lisa Gerrard and a sort of chamber orchestra with spooky strings. It was based on pictures of crime scenes and suspects from Sydney in the 1920s. The music was ethereal, spooky and beautiful but there did not seem to be any story or structure. Seen some of the pictures before in an exhibition about femme fatales at the turn of the century. Some of the scenes seemed suspiciously reminiscent of the old treasury itself with bodies on stair cases or in corridors and elegant archways. Was strategically located near a doorway bearing the script “Newspaper House” and an archway hiding a few desks and cubicles.

They were a bit over the top with all the bodies and mug shots. Every single one of those pictures could be the basis for a fascinating story but there were so many that it was serious sensory overload. Particularly fascinating were all those 1920s car crash scenes with the ancient vehicles
The one thing missing from the festival was a ghost tour, spooky stories tale of these amazing old buildings and goblin lurking grounds. Turned out there was some such thing in the south west wing which had sold out ages ago. It was called Pollyanna. Not a happy clappy story as you would think from the title but a story of a girl murdered at her birthday party and all the audience got to play detective wandering from room to room deep in the heart of goblin territory

But the two best shows of all turned out not to be on the goblins territory at all. One was in the Spiegeltent which is an amazing relic from the 1920s. Izzie just loves art deco kitsch. It was Bunga bunga Burlesqueconi starring three drag queens and a Sylvio Berlesconi impersonator with an uncanny resemblance to Paul Keating.
There was another crap show there last Monday called “Glamazonian” Normal price was $25 which was the same as BBB. Izzie got cheap tix for $15. But it was worth it just to get our nose inside this amazing glamorous tent.
Next time the serpent slinks about in the city, the old treasury buildings will be off limits. Will not be able to sit there and sip a plastic glass of Vinacious “Snake Charmer” Shiraz and offer ickle Wormtail a sip like last Wednesday.
There is still the yuppie festival gardens done up in Steam punk style. But that is a tale for another day

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