Thursday, April 14, 2011

Films and Festivals

It would appear that my normal shifts for work are on Saturdays, this month at least. It went well, except for the part where my supervisor left me at the till, which I was none too skilled at yet. >_<; Eventually a customer came up asking for change to use the penny-squisher machine, and I had no idea which button to press to open the cash drawer; I had to call my supervisor down from his lunch. Fail. T_T But after that I think I finally got the hang of it, at least a little.
After work, I took the train to Fremantle to watch Aussie movies with Nicholas. First up was The Castle. Whenever I ask an Aussie what Australian films I should watch, this is at the top of the list; however, they all promptly wince after having recommended it. This is because The Castle is about a family of “boguns” (this site has a lengthy "definition" of the term, which sorta roughly translates to rednecks, only minus the guns and aggression).  So when Aussies tell me to watch The Castle to know more about Aussie culture, I guess it’s kind of like me suggesting that Americans are all like the characters from Blue Collar Comedy (something I’ve decided I need to get my hands on to show Aussies our embarrassing working-class caricatures). I really, really loved The Castle though; I love cute and silly feel-good movies, and I loved it more for cheering me up after a crappy week.
Then we watched Strictly Ballroom, by the same director who did Moulin Rouge and Romeo + Juliet (which means those are Aussie films, too, totally upping the number of Aussie films I’ve already seen). Strictly Ballroom is, very simply, about ballroom dancing, only ridiculous. I really loved this movie, too; there’s no such thing as “too much” cheesiness in a movie for me. Show me outrageous characters, grandiose plotlines, absurd costumes and an epic score and I’m utterly hooked. Liz-kins, you HAVE to see this movie if you haven’t already; I was thinking about you the entire time, and one day I really want to watch it with you. ^_^
On Sunday I went back into the city for the last day of the Buddha’s Birthday Festival. :D zomg, Liz-kins, this was another thing you’d love...
There were big beautiful displays...

A wishing pond!

I really loved these displays...
...A huge variety of dance/music performances...
The belly dancers! Makes me want to take another class. ^_^
These adorable girls danced and sang/lip-synced to this song, which made me smile.
Croatian singers, and the girls in white dresses danced later on.
...And ALL the food was vegetarian. XD om nom, veggie samosa nom!
After I spent most of the day enjoying the festival myself, Harshil, another exchange student I met on the surf trip, came and joined me just in time to watch the Lion Dance! 
Lion Dance!! So pretty.
I also thought about Poppy and Granna a lot while at the festival. I rather have a feeling that Pops wouldn’t hold much with Buddhist philosophy, but it made me feel a little better to give offerings of incense and candlelight to Buddha for them. While I’m not a religious person, I think I get a lot out of my infrequent encounters with these types of gatherings (this festival reminded me of Amma, whom I try to see every year); in this case, the time and space to quietly think lots of good things about and for Granna and Poppy. I miss you guys.

The incense offering altar.

Buddhist monks have the most beautiful robes, hands down. ^_^
After the festival was over, Harshil and I hung out until it got dark, and I finally got a video of the City Council building. :D (That dumb little sound I make in the middle is because I've never seen the building do the word scroll before and I was super excited I caught it on video).

Here's to hoping that next week doesn't suck as bad as this week did!
P.S. ZOMG, Nicholas took me to a world food shop and we totally found something that vaguely resembles green chili. Okay, it’s “salsa verde” and the ingredients are tomatillos and jalapenos, but it’s the closest I’ll get this side of the Pacific. ^_^ And it does taste pretty good over noodles. Pseudo-breakfast burritos, here I come!

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