Yoga in Times Square, New York to celebrate the summer solstice and International Yoga Day is something I’ve not yet made it to, but it’s on my bucket list. Every year at this time, I start dreaming of holidays in sunnier places and this one fits the bill. If you’re a yogi, you may be interested in some of the winter workshops being held at Clifton Hill Yoga School.
I’ve been busy organising my next Bold Thinking Series lecture on Thursday 27 July at the State Library and wanted to give you advance notice if you’d like to book tickets to Food, Mood & Diet – Myth versus Science where my two La Trobe health sciences academics Catherine Itsiopoulos and Antigone Kouris will be joined by Maha Restaurant Owner and Chef Shane Delia and Dr Norman Swan, host of ABC Radio National’s The Health Report. Tickets can be purchased here and we’ll start officially promoting via Facebook next week.
I’m a big fan of Shane Delia’s Spice Journey program on SBS so looking forward to working with him on this lecture and his middle Eastern Maha Restaurant in the city, where a couple of my best friends have dined, has been on my radar for a while as much as some of my male work colleagues are fans of his kebabs at the more lo-fi Biggie Smalls in Collingwood. I also think his related cookbook below would have some great recipes if you’re wanting to experiment over the winter.
I was reflecting the other day with Mr Rosanna that it’s been an interesting professional journey for me working mainly with men at La Trobe. Public Relations tends to be female-dominated as well as many of the industries I’ve worked in such as fashion, beauty, retail and the visual arts. It’s been refreshing to work with guys this time around from my two bosses, to my colleagues who help coordinate the advertising, event management and livestream filming. Have a great weekend and enjoy the sunshine today.
I’m focusing on the things I can control at the moment and try to encourage my children to face the world with love, not fear as much as it’s sometimes difficult to do. I often think about the lyrics too, in The Smith’s song Ask about shyness stopping you from doing all the things you’d like to in life – shyness, like fear, can be paralysing sometimes but I think it’s important to keep going after the big things in life that are important to you, ask questions and stay curious as we never know what’s around the corner.
It’s National Sorry Day today and there are a couple of Indigenous events I wanted to mention. The Nahlinggu Bagung (Come Gather) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Exhibition opened yesterday at Hatch Contemporary Arts Space in Ivanhoe and is on until 10 June. The Little Book of Things to Do in Banyule also features some great things to do over the winter period.
La Trobe University is also holding Closing the Gap in Higher Education Symposium on Indigenous higher education next Friday at the State Library Theatrette, which includes a very impressive speaker line-up of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander academics and other high profile people.
The Darebin Homemade Food & Wine Festival starts next Monday celebrating food traditions and sustainable food practices. A number of my friends do annual tomato passata bottling with their families, while Mr Rosanna actually made jam for the first time a few weeks ago. Stay safe and enjoy your weekend.
It’s been a really busy start to the year and I can’t believe my next Bold Thinking Series lecture – Michael Kirby on Health, Law & Sexuality is on next week at the NGV Great Hall, which holds 600 people and we are almost at capacity. La Trobe University has been bringing out the big guns in terms of names with former PM Paul Keating being the keynote speaker at the Ideas & Society lecture on our role in Asia the Trump era, run by Emeritus Professor and public intellectual Robert Manne, at the Melbourne Recital Centre this Friday. This event sold out within the first week or so of being advertised.
I also out went out on Sunday night with my workmates to see my Irish friend Colum perform in his show Improv Against Humanity (based on the naughty card game) as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Before the show, we tried for a table at Supernormal in Flinders Lane, which was super crowded and so decided to go to the Garden State Hotel (on the former Rosati’s site), which was also going off when we entered. The resident DJ was spinning some pretty groovy tunes so it was a shame we couldn’t stay for a dance – we opted for a basement booth table away from the noise and ordered counter meals after walking into the restaurant, which was more pricey.
Colum’s gig had been shifted to Speakeasy HQ past the Waterside Hotel in Flinders Street – it’s Melbourne’s only dedicated vaudeville venue (and art gallery) located upstairs with a lounge bar outside the stage area and is housed in a former gold-rush era bank building – I was admiring the beautiful patterned ceiling while I was there. And the gig? It was very funny and improv performers are brave souls indeed – so quick off the mark….let’s just say that the words ‘semen’ and ‘dolphin’ were put to good use over the course of the evening. Colum is not my only talented work friend, I discovered another friend Michelle used to be a high school teacher by day and a salsa dancer by night! Next time out there will definitely be a bit of boogie-ing on down.
If you attended a Dawn Service this morning, I hope you managed to have a restful afternoon this Anzac Day. It’s been nice to pause and reflect.
I’ve actually spent a fair amount of time in the city the past few days. My Bold Thinking Series lecture was held on the last balmy night of Autumn last week. I had to fight my way through the crowds sitting outside the front of the State Library and on the nearby streets to get my noodles before the lecture started and emerged after my event, to find just as many people enjoying the night – including a dance off and some pretty rad moves by a group of guys out the front. Melbourne really has become an international metropolis in many ways – I just hope we can continue to grow in a sustainable way and I’m grateful for the relative peace we live in given all that is currently happening on the world stage.
My lecture itself was fascinating – both futurist Dr Fiona McKenzie and businessman James Fazzino did a great job of flying the flag for La Trobe University while digital transformer David Metcalfe from Linked In and Foundation for Young Australians CEO Jan Owen collectively provided enlightening and insightful perspectives on what the future of work might look like – including the need for soft skills such as cognitive flexibility, emotional intelligence, social awareness, entrepreneurship, leadership, digital and communication skills. The landscape is changing and we need to change with it in order to keep up. You can watch it all on livestream here if you’re interested.
From warmth to freezing cold, I was back in the city on Sunday as my children were booked into an Easter school holiday workshop at ACMI. We also had a prior engagement at Docklands beforehand and it was a nightmare trying to work our way back to the top of town given the inclement weather and the fact that Flinders Street was closed for Run for the Kids. I was impressed with the runners who still competed despite the 11 degree rainy day outdoors – tough stuff indeed. I was happy to escape into the studios at ACMI and grab coffee and lunch from the cafe. Enjoy the rest of the week – I’m counting down to Easter and I’m sure I’m not the only one!
It’s a lovely sentiment and it’s actually La Trobe University’s motto in French Qui cherche trouve, which is on the coat of arms. This coat of arms in rusted iron (below) is on display in one of the heritage buildings near my office outside what used to be the horse stables and features the heath floral emblem representing Victoria, scallop shells for the La Trobe family and the open book – all that’s missing is the wedge-tailed eagle at the top. Apparently it symbolises the journey of learning and the desired outcome, but perhaps the outcome possibly being different as a result of going on the journey.
The University is turning 50 on Wednesday 8 March and to celebrate, there will be a Lawn Lunch on Sunday 5 March from noon – 5pm on the Academic Lawn of the Bundoora campus grounds. It will feature an afternoon program of music, film, food, drinks and author conversations with tickets now on sale ($20 General Admission/$10 Concession). If you’re a past student, staff member or friend of the University, then this event is your chance to catch up with old friends and reminisce about your time at La Trobe.Tickets include food from one of nine social enterprise catering partners (including among them the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre and Lentil as Anything). You’ll also get a glass of beer, wine or soft drink on entry as well as a memorabilia bag. The grounds at La Trobe are looking pretty spectacular at the moment so it will be a great day out if the sun is shining. There are some other exciting events taking place at the University in its 50th year which I will post about later on.
Speaking of beautiful outdoor areas, Art by Twilight is on this Friday at Heide Museum of Modern Art in Bulleen if you’re after a cool summer night of art and music while the Heide Makers Market is being held next Saturday 11 February. If you’re wanting to beautify your own outdoor area, I do love some of the garden art made of corten steel by Broadcroft Design, who are based on the Sunshine Coast.