>I promised I’d do a proper write-up about the AA meetup in Perth last week and here it is in all its rushed glory:
The meetup took place after the second day of the AustLit conference that I was attending at UWA. I’d just heard Miriam Lo and Simone Lazaroo (among others) read from recent work at a surprisingly fun series of readings late that afternoon. For those of you who are interested: Simone’s third novel, The Travel Writer, is due out around Sept/Oct this year and she may be at the Melbourne Writers’ Festival to promote it.
Hoa and I met up with Romit and CY downstairs. I’d run into Romit earlier that day, while he was wandering the campus in a haze of caffeine withdrawal. He very kindly offered a lift to the meetup venue and I took him up on it before he could get to his coffee and realise what he’d done. We were joined at Taka’s Kitchen by Rachael and Dean. It was so good to finally meet Rachael (as I’m a regular reader of her blog and she’s a long-serving AA_discusser). I just hope that we didn’t bore her to tears with the amount of academic talk that went on. After dinner, CY led us to a wonderfully apt place for an AA meetup, the Tiger Lily bar/cafe. It was just around the corner from Taka’s and the entry to the place was lit with bright red lamps. The decor of the interior would best be described as uber-Oriental. It was magnificently over-the-top. You know you’re in the danger-zone when you spy upside-down brocade parasols proliferating across the ceiling and statues of Buddha adorning every nook. The place was chockers with Asian themed items and, along with the dark wood panelling, it recalled for me the ultimate in chic faux-colonialism.
And who could ask for more than that?
Well, we were happily ensconced in the back lounge, with our drinks and Adam (who’d joined us there), chatting and half-watching a chop-socky flick that was screening above the bar, when we heard a gong. After a few comments such as “omg, was that a gong?”, we realised that was how the service staff were alerted by the kitchen. There’s a gong on the counter. I’d commented that it was a pity the serving staff weren’t outfitted in-theme with cheong-sam and chopsticks in their hair when CY (I think) pointed out that they were indeed wearing Chinese frog-button blouses. Ah, all was right in the Orientalist tableau.
Unfortunately, I was a bad person and didn’t take my digicam. CY’s mobile camera couldn’t cope with the sultry gloom of the Tiger Lily’s interior. So, alas, no pics!
Our evening progressed with portions of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles showing above the bar. I couldn’t hear what the other folks were talking about but I know that Romit and I hatched tentative publication plans, and we talked in general with others about the ‘lurkers’ on the AA_discuss list (and, yes, I named names…). All in all, a chatty and enjoyable time.
Next Perth AA meetup may be to celebrate CY’s submission of his PhD (no pressure, CY, no pressure…)! Thanks to those who came along, and especially to Romit for ferrying us around!