Well, the 3 oceans became 4, or at least we have pretty much made it all the way around the continent in a few weeks! I am now sitting in Mt. Gambier, which is on the south side, somewhere in the middle, where the half hour goes missing.
But I should try to stick to the chronological order, so let me back track to the West coast.
After Perth we drove to Mandurah (one would think that after a month one gets used to sitting on a bus for hours on end, alas no. Where toes get callused from the shoes & dancing, our buns do not from sitting and it becomes increasingly difficult to “unfold” one’s self after 6-7 hours on a 2 lane road). Mandurah is a quaint town, situated on an inlet that is almost level with the streets, creating a wonderful Swan Lakey effect in the moonlit evenings. We could just glance the Indian Ocean from the rooms, but my plan to walk over to see it was thwarted by the elements. An incredible rain hit during the night soaking everything in seconds. It was a rain I have not experienced before, big heavy drops coming down at Fomula One speeds, only to slow down right before impact, bursting ever so gently like soft wet and COLD kisses. The theatre itself was a nice modern alternative to the old rickety places we had been to, though the hardness of the stage in Perth was still in my body. We got two days here as we drove for a “short” 1.5 hour drive to Bunbury to do two shows, then 1.5 hour back. The Bunbury theatre was of the rickety kind, complete with water leaking in on the hallway floors and a stage door that wouldn’t close because of the windgusts. Luckily the stage was tiny so the fact that none of us were able to stay warm was too noticeable (we hope…) but then again it’s comedy right?
Soaked near an ocean is not the same as being there, and I really wanted to dip my feet in the Indian Ocean on this side of it, as I had done some years ago from the African side. But Fortune does seem to travel with us (at least so far) and the next stop Geraldton was on the beach itself and I did manage to dip my feet inadvertently as I was balancing on a rock showing them all how you can make the waves come to you by calling “Rul bølger rul!” (“Roll waves, roll!” an old Danish sketch by one of my favorite Danish comedians Dirch Passer) Well roll they did, all the way to my calf standing on a rock-pile pier a good 6 feet above the water level. And the water looked calm! But there it was, 3 oceans or bodies of water in about a week.
I am not documenting the shows that much, as we were just trying to maintain the level every show, having no time to rehearse, much less the energy after busrides and lack of sleep and pizzas for dinner. The jokes were still there of course, but not a lot of new gags were introduced except my “buttspeak” joke, where I enter downstage, face upstage and flex my cheeks to the delight of the first few rows. Some of the “girls” offer feedback after most shows as to how well the individual cheeks are doing, it is nice to be amongst a group that cares so much for the overall show…
Our final stop on the Western part of Australia was the goldmining town of Kalgoorlie. The only town in the country where prostitution is “legal”. That means they look through fingers with it, as it keeps the crime rate and domestic and sexual abuse rates down to less than 1%. Our costumier Max, the mad Hatter, threw a fit to the reception upon our arrival after being approached by 3 working girls; maybe he had not been listening when they told the rest of us the history of the town.
I should briefly mention the 14 hour bus trip to get to Kalgoorlie. It will be brief as some of us (myself included) apparently got a little tipsy on the trip, or should I say smashed? It was fun, especially when I decided to show class combinations made up on the spot in the very narrow aisle of a moving bus. I am told they were quite difficult…
But back to Kalgoorlie. No I did not visit a “house of ill repute”, but did walk around marveling at a town loaded with money, where they can’t get school teachers because you will make more working in the mines as a guard than 3 teachers in a year, sad to see how our reliance on money make us forget to interest ourselves with investing in the mind.
The money present there, did not show in town though, except for the lavish old hotels from the turn of the last century when the town was built. It seemed like it had sprung up overnight and remained that way till the present day. With the exception of Perth I was not sad to leave the Western part.