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Angels trumpets. Hell’s bells. Buttery petals splayed out into ivory wings, nodding in the breeze. Countless flowers dangle triumphantly, steadfastly poised. Ready and waiting.

Virginia 1676, this tree found its name in Jamestown weed, for the mass accidental poisoning of soldiers there. After the leaves were boiled and served to all the unsuspecting soldiers, ‘a very pleasant comedy’ erupted, looked on by Robert Beverly, the head officer. One soldier was found ‘blowing up a feather in the air,’ while another would ‘fondly kiss and paw his companions.’ All would have ‘wallowed in their own excrements, if they had not been prevented.’ After 11 days of these antics, the soldiers returned to themselves not remembering a thing. Folk-lore deems an essential ingredient in Witches Brew, to potion a love so deep it could kill. Now commonly referred to as Datura, a tree often found in Australian backyards.

I first heard of Datura in relation to a friend of a friend. Unknowingly, or perhaps in defiance one afternoon he smoked the leaves. Unlike those soldiers he never did return to himself, his brain remaining permanently damaged. Not the casual high some seek after a toke of a joint or a bite of a mushroom. The last time I saw him he was bolting out of Woolworths, handfuls of groceries flailing behind him.

A few months before he had checked himself into a psyche-ward, but he ran away from that too. Who knows why he fell irrevocably into the hell’s bell’s, while the ‘comedic spectacle’ performed by the soldiers was short-lived. It doesn’t help that our only bible to the effect of Datura lies in the sticky webs of google.

Xylem and Phoem are the arteries and veins of a tree. These guys are constantly pumping sugar and water around particular molecules found in Datura known as Tropane Alkaloids, that which mucks with the receptors in our brain.

The result of Datura is a heightened feeling of Delirium, not to be confused with Hallucination. Inside the brain’s molecular structure and in-between the chemical neurotransmitters that trigger emotions and repress feelings, the state of Delerium vs Hallucination are antithetical. Even on a wig-out scale what a person experiences comparatively are completely opposite. Yet Datura is commonly referred to under the Hallucinogenic Umbrella-schema of things. Effect-seeking people often miss the cause.
…..‘never heard of it but from what i just read on google every part of this plant is toxic so I would say just drink a little bit maybe half of a glass and wait…if you don’t get sick after 30 min drink the rest’.

A Yahoo answer to “How much angel trumpet tea should I drink.’ Much like Nanna’s afternoon brew, only cadenced in modern verse.

I often think about that friend of a friend. Life’s mixed up cruelties are often shrouded in charm. Maybe he receded into a part of his brain where there is less confusion. Now and then we are all fooled by the dreamy precursor, yet glitter can be blinding, deliberately so.

All photographs by Greta Stonehouse.


Written for Australian Traveller Mag

July 9, 2014

A spirited Greta Stonehouse braves a new ghost tour at an old house with a frightening past in Sydney’s Macarthur. So what exactly is spooking Menangle House?

When the new owners of Menangle House arrived home from their holiday, they expected to find their friends house-sitting and awaiting their return. Instead, they found an empty house with the doors wide open, and dinner still laid out on the table.

Later, their friends told them their house was haunted and they had fled unable to bare another minute inside. Not even to put the food away or close a door.

This is one of many ghost stories recounted inside old Menangle House, its history of one family, killings, and suicide lives on through the psychic tours of today. Whether you are a non-believer or a spiritual enthusiast, the history itself is enough to keep anyone intrigued.

The property stands alone, along an empty stretch of highway, in south-western Sydney. Under an open sky, the country vibe of Macurthur is an idyllic location for a haunted house.

At its entrance is the Horse and Jockey Inn, a modern Aussie pub with its Friday special of $15 schnitty’s – ten ways. Through the pub is the heritage-listed house where old ghosts and new residents apparently live side by side. The surrounding gardens are now used for wedding receptions.

The first part of the ($120) package deal is a two-course dinner. Set in a large hall over several round tables the atmosphere is stark, but the communal tables allow for conversation among the guests.

The pub was serving local diners as well as our tour group and my meal took longer than I expected to arrive. I ordered the beef Wellington, grain-fed rib eye wrapped in puff pastry, slow baked and served on a smoky bed of red wine jus. Rich and tender, it was worth the wait. In fact, each main was a hearty serving of fine, wholesome produce and honest flavours, the perfect winter meal.

For dessert I ordered the banoffe pie, which had layers of rich caramel, cream and banana all competing a little too aggressively with each other. However, my partner’s sticky toffee pudding was a safe delight.

Tracey Lee was the main psychic guiding the night’s events. Her personality and belief in the supernatural infused the whole experience with intrigue and character. While there is enough history in Macarthur to allow for a purely historical tour, it seemed the people there had paid to see something else.

Gathered around the entrance of the food hall our four psychic guides set the mood with tales of shootings and recent haunted experiences. Unfortunately two television sets drowned out parts of their stories. Eventually a waitress noticed this and switched them off. As we walked through the pub, past punters banging their glasses and talking loudly, it seemed an absurd corridor to bypass given we were about to enter one of Sydney’s oldest houses.

The original Menangle House was built in 1834 by George Taber and his convicts. Divided by class, the house was used as a lodge and a bar that now holds the oldest servery in Australia.

The psychics did well in prompting our thoughts beyond the material walls. While some of their observations were insightful, at times it felt they had used the historical literature to infuse their visions. It doesn’t take a psychic to know that in “the man’s room”, there are feelings of gambling (I wasn’t aware gambling was a feeling), and a heavy presence of men.

As some guests entered the rooms they felt heavy or sensed a shift in temperature. For me, the recounting of the chilling deaths, such as the four children who drowned by the river, or the 19-year-old girl who hung herself, was enough to send a few shivers down my spine.

By far the most intriguing room was the old parlour, now part museum, with a wall full of original photo portraits. Like peering into a haunted movie set, the faces of the children looked eerily stricken.

When our tour finished up for the ‘readings’ at 10pm, there seemed to be too many people to get through in the allocated half hour. Extra numbers had turned up on the night, and it was in this final stage that it showed. Not for me though, having travelled the furthest, I was kindly allocated an early reading.

My reading was done by Maureen, a grandmotherly figure who held my hand and wrapped me in warm blessings. Outside of the tour, a half an hour reading will cost anything up to $80 dollars, and given we all had ten-minute slots it may have been better value to have less people and longer readings. No matter how delightful Maureen was, no-one could have helped the fact that ten minutes felt rushed.

With its 175 years of sordid history, the Menangle House tour does offer an insight into part of Sydney’s fascinating past. While I didn’t see any picture frames moving, there were plenty of ghost stories to fill in the blanks.

Greta was a guest of Destination Macarthur. For more information on the Menangle House ghost tour see: www.macarthur.com.au

Wild Lime Cooking School offers its students accommodation in a Treehouse cottage
http://www.worendo.com/cooking-school.html

Written for Australian Traveller Mag

August 12, 2014

We’ve combed Australia’s cooking schools to find this top-shelf selection of cooking classes that are out of the ordinary in their food, philosophy and, of course, their locations (By: Greta Stonehouse).

1. The Agrarian Kitchen, Lachlan, Tasmania
Where better to learn the art of cooking wholesome food than where it comes from. The Agrarian Kitchen is a sustainable, farm-based cooking school in Tasmania’s Derwent Valley. One of the founders, Rodney Dunn, a former chef under Tetsuya, combines his passion for great cuisine with the pristine Tasmanian landscape – a foodie’s dreamland. See: The Agrarian Kitchen

2. Cape Lodge, Margaret River, Western Australia
Situated on its own vineyard and surrounded by the stunning Margaret River Wine Country, this five-star boutique resort is a blissful spot for a gourmet retreat. Cape Lodge is the kind of place where chefs such as Heston Blumenthal, Rick Stein and Adriano Zumbo stay. While cooking classes are held by some of Australia’s top chefs, they are not run regularly, which means getting your skates on and bee-lining for the River when they are. See: Cape Lodge

3. Bells at Killcare, NSW Central Coast
Bells at Killcare runs a monthly cooking school hosted by the head chef of Manfredi at Bells, Cameron Cansdell. The menu is forever changing, thanks to Manfredi’s traditional Italian cooking philosophy of only using seasonal, organic produce. Before attempting the simple Italian recipes, students handpick produce from the serene Bells gardens. The experience is then finished off by dining with the chefs while sipping on some award-winning Manfredi wines. See: Bells at Killcare

4. Chapel Hill Wine, McLaren Vale, South Australia
Chapel Hill Wine a cooking school, in the heart of fabulous McLaren Vale, encourages its students to develop the delicate taste of ‘umami’, the fifth sense of taste (corresponding to the flavour of glutamates, according to the Oxford dictionary). With classes led by the prize-winning chef Rebecca Stubbs, against a backdrop of rolling hills and expansive coastline, this is an ideal spot to get to know all five of your senses intimately. See: Chapel Hill Wine

5. Foragers, Pemberton, Western Australia
When Chris Zalokar combined his artisan building skills with Sophie’s Zalokar depth of cooking knowledge, this charming cooking school was born. Trained under Maggie Beer, Sophie was cooking around the world before she settled in the untouched southern forests of Pemberton, where Chris has built stylish farm accommodation. Classes range from hands-on cooking techniques to learning the fundamental skills of food production and, most importantly, cheese making. See: Foragers

6. Sticky Rice, Adelaide Hills, South Australia
With celebrity chefs like Poh dropping in to take a masterclass, Sticky Rice undoubtedly understands the art of Asian flavour. As well as pounding out aromatic curries and feasting on the rewards afterwards, students have the opportunity of staying in one in one of Sticky Rice’s villas modelled on Balinese, Thai, and Japanese architecture. See: Sticky Rice

7. Spirit House, Yandina, Sunshine Coast Hinterland
Nestled amongst tropical gardens and tranquil ponds, The Spirit House has the right amount of exotic ambience to transport its guests into the heart of Thailand. Home to an award-winning Asian food restaurant, this is a sublime spot for learning how to make the finest modern Thai cuisine.

8. Wild Lime Cooking School, Lamington National Park, Queensland
Hidden in the Lost World Valley in Queensland’s food basket, the Scenic Rim, is a cooking school with more than just your average view. The Wild Lime Cooking school offers snug ‘Treehouse Cottage’ accommodation, equipped with a fireplace and a balcony, so you can cook and relax all the while staring out at the World Heritage-listed rainforested mountains of Lamington National Park.

9. Flavours of the Valley, Kangaroo Valley, NSW
With a focus on locally sourced, quality produce, Flavours of the Valley offers a range of Mediterranean cooking techniques practiced against a backdrop of peaceful Kangaroo Valley. As well as classes, a ‘Tastes of the Valley’ mini-bus tour is available, going behind the scenes of the farmers, providores and makers of the gourmet food and wine on offer in this serene region.
Written for Australian Traveller Mag



October 7, 2014

The Northern Lights get all the love when it comes to natural light phenomena but did you know Australia has its own light show – the Aurora Australis? Greta Stonehouse speaks to ‘Southern Lights’ experts to see why you might want to consider Tasmania before you book your flight to Scandinavia, Canada… or Siberia.

Fifteen years ago Margaret Sonnemann was driving from Launceston to Hobart when she noticed something in the sky that made her pull over in shock.

This was Margaret’s first glimpse of the Southern Lights. Back then, there was no portal available to discuss this amazing natural phenomenon. Today her Facebook group, Aurora Australis Tasmania, has more than 15,000 members, but the fact that Tasmania just might be the best vantage spot in the world to view the Southern Lights remains largely unknown.

“Australians are so privileged to be able to see the Southern Lights,” Margaret said. We think so too. So here’s the why, how, when and where…

The science
The Aurora Australis, or Southern Lights, happens when the sun releases a massive burst of solar wind and magnetic fields into space, also known as CME (coronal mass ejections).

These solar winds carry particles which interact with earth’s magnetic field, colliding to produce energy releases in the form of auroras.

“Auroras are more frequent and brighter during the intense phase of the solar cycle when coronal mass ejections increase the intensity of the solar wind,” says Margaret Sonnemann, author of The Aurora Chaser’s Handbook.

Given that earth’s magnetic field is closest to its surface at the North and South poles, Antarctica and Tasmania are the best spots for seeing the Southern Lights given their close proximity to them.

What can you expect?
If you Google pictures of both the Southern and Northern lights you will see images of skies full of rich greens and vivid blues, or wild swirls of reds and purples. But often this is not what the naked eye can see.

“To the naked eye, an aurora will look more like a white flickering light,” says James Garlick (image 3) who has been photographing the Southern Lights for years, with one of his photos recently being featured on an Australian postage stamp. “It could be mistaken for a cloud. It’s not until you do a long exposure with the camera that the colours are revealed.”

Matt Glastonbury (image 1), another avid Southern Lights photographer, revels in the way they move through the night sky.

“They are like dancing curtains of light across the sky,” he says. “The size of them is incredible – beams of light are shooting right up into the atmosphere. It is really magical to see them moving around right in front of you.”

Best spots to see the lights?
In short, “all over Tasmania,” says Margaret Sonnemann.

The main obstructions to viewing the Southern Lights are large mountain ranges, trees and city (and light) pollution. There are, however, some places that photographers favour due to their landscape qualities.

Photographer Paul Fleming prefers South Arm Peninsula, 40 kilometres south east of Hobart, for his Aurora views.

“There are lots of beaches and still, wide shallow bays. It’s a good spot for nice reflection shots with waves crashing in the foreground.”

Matt Glastonbury has two favourite spots: Dodges Ferry, about 40km east of Hobart, and Cockle Creek, on the southern tip of Tassie, 120km south-west of Hobart.

“Both of those places have little light pollution,” he says. “The less of that you get the better.”

When do the lights shine brightest?
Theoretically speaking the equinox (in September) should be the best time for viewing the Southern Lights, but this isn’t always the case. Since the Aurora is based on sunspots and massive bursts of solar winds, scientific predictions can be unreliable.

Unlike the Northern hemisphere, which is subject to extreme seasonal light changes, the Southern Lights can be viewed from Tasmania all year round. It is worth noting (and to some a tad obvious) that the lights can only really be seen at night time, therefore winter is ideal, given daylight savings in Tasmania can stretch the light until 10pm.

How to track them
For smart phone applications, Matt Glastonbury suggests Star Walk, an interactive astronomy guide.

Aurora Forecast has several real-time maps of the atmosphere and shows how much it is hitting the earth at any given time.

Spaceweather.com includes visual representation of plasma coming out of the sun.

As mentioned the Aurora Australis Tasmania Facebook group is often how many photographers find the lights with members posting real-time alerts.

Where else can I see them?
Some parts of New Zealand, South America and Antarctica.

Image by AustralianTraveller.com

Written for Australian Traveller Mag

September 5, 2014

Greta Stonehouse goes digging around for dirt on Australia’s most prolific flower show, Canberra’s Floriade.

“The most asked question at Floriade is about the English daisies, which look like little buttons – people always want to know what they are.”

The event’s head gardener Andrew Forster answers one of the most burning questions surrounding Floriade to date, and if anyone knows their tulips from their daisies it’s this guy.

Floriade, held in Canberra’s Commonwealth Park, is the largest flower show in the Southern Hemisphere. In 2013 alone almost 450,000 thousand people attended. In 2014 more than one million flowers and 70 different kinds of bulbs will be making up the show and it made us wonder, how does such a mind-boggling amount of flowers come together. Surely Canberra’s Garden of Eden is hiding some skeletons in its soil.

Forster explains that Floriade is not an “exotic display” of flowers or a native homage to our backyard bloomers, the mix of tulips, daisies and pansies are chosen because they can bloom for the September to October 30-day period.

Even though the flowers bloom for the show’s entirety “the second week of Floriade is a great time to come and check out Floriade. The gardens are usually at their peak at this time,” says Andrew.

During the 27 years Floriade has been running, surprisingly no flowerbeds have fallen victim to viruses or random plagues of exotic bugs. In fact, the only skeleton to be found in this garden bed is the odd orange tulip in amongst a bed of red ones.

If your garden bed is in need of a few tulips or daisies you might want to consider volunteering next year because when the gates finally close in October all the flowers are distributed amongst the volunteers, nursery homes and hospital garden beds.

Floriade runs between 13 September and 12 October in 2014 at the Commonwealth Park in Canberra.

Four Floriade faves…
Floriade spokeswoman Adelina La Vita is wrapped about a number of celebrity faces making an appearance this year. She says …

1. Floriade favourite Barry Du Bois is returning for the second year – I can’t wait to see what DIY tricks he has up his sleeve.

2. Bindi Irwin’s Wildlife Warriors presentations will attract huge crowds – she really is an inspiring young Australian.

3. Miguel Maestre will no doubt be an absolute charmer and his Spanish cooking demonstrations should be fantastic.

4. I’m really interested to hear what Indira Naidoo has to say about gardening in small spaces. Her book, The Edible Balcony, is a great read.
Date: 16/05/14

Reporter: Greta Stonehouse

PRESENTER INTRO:

Ashfield Heritage Park is one of many natural reserves in line to be bulldozed to make way for the WestConnex motorway.

With the government recently injecting two million dollars into fast tracking the first stage of development, local residents are becoming increasingly worried.

In the wake of the largest integrated transport and urban project Australia has ever seen, the government is yet to release a detailed business plan or the evidence to back up the proposed travel time estimates.

Greta Stonehouse with this report.



For Aphra Mag.

Café: Vintage Nest Espresso
62 Hyde St, Bellingen NSW 2454

Specialty: Coffee and all things vintage.

Price range: 3.50 for a coffee, 4 for a range of tarts, muffins and home-made biscuits. Vintage prices range but for the quality they are really reasonable.

A little description of the place: Bellingen town is the perfect matching of country folk and hippies, organic food and wholesome farming produce. In the middle of the main street sits another lovely pairing, vintage and coffee. Vintage Nest Espresso is half vintage store half café, an open plan space to enhance the eclectic vibe. On one wall of the coffee shop vintage cameras dangle seductively. On another wall aging books are stacked, colour worn and full of supple pages. It doesn’t feel overly stylized like an interior designer was all ‘lets go for that cute old look’. Even if this was the case, it’s put together in a way that resembles your grandmas lounge-room, comfortable, a little add-hoc and always welcoming.

The tables and chairs, often sprawling old couches are mostly for sale, but they also act as the furniture for the café. The charm that Vintage Nest Espresso exudes lies in the fact that both the café and vintage store are worth visiting, one is not simply posing in for the other. The coffee tastes damn good and the vintage clothes and accessories are high quality, with much more affordable prices than those found in Sydney. There is a cabinet full of home-made treats and muffins, but as far as food goes that is all.

The staff are always friendly and there is never an arrogant shove to constantly get new bums on seats. I visit Bellingen often and have been back to Vintage nest Espresso every time. Besides the extra dresses I leave with, a fur coat last time, nothing ever changes. It’s the kind of place that you meet a friend for a quick coffee in and you end up hours later melting further into the couches not wanting to leave.

What I ate: Home-made Monte Carlo, a thick delicious ball of yum to go with my two long blacks.

The verdict: An inviting place to drink some splendid coffee and browse some great vintage. In the plethora of my city café culture, I am yet to find one quite like this country gem.

All photos by Greta Stonehouse.


Review for Aphra Mag


My first chat with Rhys Nicholson was much like my first whisky sour.

His dirty jokes are almost that first sour sip of “Omg I can’t even,” followed by a boyish charm that’s the perfect mix of sweet and sour. No matter what topic we cover Rhys speaks with a clarity and depth, while punctuated with naughtiness it’s an entirely merry conversation, much like chatting in the fuzz of a gentle drunk.

Well known for his acerbic tongue and quick, witty banter, Rhys embodies a flamboyant gay with a realistic take on modern society. Seeing as we only phone chat I miss his stylish suited demeanour and groomed, red hair. Yet even without the aesthetics Rhys’s personality is joyfully colourful.

In 2012 Rhys won the Sydney comedy festival time out award for Best newcomer. In 2013 he also won perhaps the most acclaimed prize in comedy to date. The MX Joke of the Sydney comedy festival award. Recently he took some time out from his current tour Eurgh, to talk to me about his new show, life and cock jokes.

Rhys grew up in Newcastle NSW, and from a young age collected VHS copies of old Melbourne comedy shows and comedy galas. Rhys’s passion for comedy eventually drew him to the city of Sydney, where from 2009 he has continued to pursue his dream.

“I’ve never been interested in football, never been into the beach in general. I’m very pale so I just never felt like I really fit in so much there, and everyone who I did fit in with moved to Melbourne or Sydney. It’s the same with anyone who grows up in a small town that wants to do this kind of work, you’ve gotta find a hub. “

While Sydney has become that hub for Rhys, I was taken aback when he remarked he gets called faggot on the streets of Sydney just as much as he did in Newcastle. Us Sydneysiders, praying to the coffee gods and progressively sipping our coconut waters in Bondi, still can’t decipher man from stick. Rhys didn’t seem too bothered by it, but as a born and bred Sydneysider I find those kinds of insults cringe/sideshow bob shudder worthy, in the worst possible way.

For 24 years old, Rhys appears surprisingly wise. His new show deals with topics from asylum seekers to being gay, and his approach is gifted with a wider, more inclusive view.

“We should be looking at tolerance as a whole, and not this one hot button issue, because then its like well, as soon as we get gay marriage its all going to be alright, but no, we should be looking more at how we treat people. We can’t demand gay marriage and be asking for equality, while also pushing people away at borders. I think it should be more about how we’re treating each other as people and less about how we’re treating each other as sexes and sexualities,” says Rhys.

Rhys then goes on to explain that while he understands the general gist of politics, he gets his boyfriend to help explain the details. Like Tywin Lanister so aptly put, “A wise king knows what he knows, and what he doesn’t.


“All I know is Tony Abbott is bad and Bill Shorten is less bad, but he’s also quite boring…I saw somewhere the other day that there is something like 10 points on the poles for Bill Shorten to serve prime minister, a brick is actually what Bill Shorten is. It shows that we prefer a human brick over the douche bag that is running our country right now,” says Rhys.

Besides the wise Rhys, there is also the quintessential Aussie Rhys who doesn’t hesitate to point out BS when he sees it.

“Dumb fuckery, if people are being dumb fucks I’m going to talk about it.”

Don’t let his sharp tongue fool you. The whole time he is chatting to me he is polite, friendly and down to Earth. He’s the neighbour who makes an effort to know you further than your house number. His wit is never aimed in a mean spirited way it’s simply a reflection of the ironies and hypocrisies surrounding humans in general.

In a short time Rhys has made his name stand out internationally. While he may comment with a pinch of tartness, it’s founded in positive spirit and a depth of understanding. And that red hair just adds to the flavour, much like a maraschino cherry on top.


Inside the Rover – Q & A between Margaret Pomeranz, David Michod, Guy Pearce, Robert Pattison and Liz Watts.


Review for Aphra Mag

On Sunday the 8th of June at Sydney Town Hall, Sydney Film Festival in collaboration with Vivid Sydney presented a discussion between the main players of The Rover and Australia’s favourite film connoisseur Margaret Pomeranz.

The main players being Director David Michod, who shot to fame in 2012 when his first film Animal Kingdom became an international success. The Producer of the film Liz Watts who fell in love with Michod’s vision, and the two stars, Guy Pearce and Robert Pattison who emerged on stage to whooping applause and girly squeals of delight. Margaret shared her questions around skilfully to uncover the inner workings behind the making of the film.

“I knew if I could just get through the second film, everything after would be a breeze,” said Michod acknowledging the immense pressure he felt surrounding his second film. While Michod said he felt external pressure more than internal, he did wait two years, sift through countless scripts and handpick his cast to ensure The Rover came to life.

Casting Guy would have been relatively easy seeing as Michod had Guy’s voice inside his head whilst writing the script. Casting Robert was a different story. After meeting with him in LA by chance, he invited Robert out to his home to try out for the role. A giggling Robert recalled the lengthy four-hour casting process Michod put him through, but Michod knew he’d found his other lead when Robert walked into his house and “made the character come to life”.

The film is set in Adelaide’s Flinders ranges as well as some of the remotest parts of The Murray in Victoria, and proved to be a gruelling shoot for everyone involved. Robert remembered waking up to “700 flies” swarming around his face while Liz assured the audience that temperatures never increased past 46 degrees Celsius. Everyone was filthy on set and, “it shows,” Margaret added.

Even though Michod felt the pressure awaiting his second film, he was delighted by the outcome. “Spine tingling and nerve-racking” was how Michod described the process of making The Rover. His unique choice to make the film using film, instead of digital gave it an aesthetic look that Michod both loves and acknowledges is a dyeing trade. The film for the The Rover is the last ever to be processed in Australia.

Like the pack of dogs Guy relates his and Roberts characters to, everyone on stage seemed to be licking each other with praises, and it seemed genuine. For Robert, Michod was a director who “actually directs”, and Guy equally loved working with him because he understood what actors are doing, “there are many directors I would never work with again,” said Guy without going into any more detail despite Margarets prodding. For Michod seeing great actors bring his script to life was a “magical experience.”

At the end of the discussion the questions were opened up to the audience. While it may have been a good opportunity for the Twilight fans to emerge, the MA 18+ rating perhaps kept them at bay. However, the closest to a cringe- worthy question did come from a young (and gushy) girl who asked Robert if he liked putting on the accent. (Previously Robert had spoken about the staccato rhythm of the Australian accent, how much he enjoyed it and that it added physicality to the way he moved). Relevant I suppose?

The audience had its fair share of dewy haired girls, but predominantly was full of film buffs and experts. A talk about an Australian film that’s set in Australia, kicked an entire theatre of people out of bed on a cold and rainy Sunday. Who said that the Australian film industry was dying?

The Rover is in cinemas now.


Ice-cream and cream iced-coffee on a sweltering spring day over the long weekend when our cat ran away, we didn't go to Melbourne and couldn't camp. Sick cat prevailed. Big breakfast also prevailed.