Travels in Oz

I'm off - for 6 months of adventure (er, research) in Australia.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Perth library is fascinating

Just a quick post today - it's my last day in the library before a mini-vacation traveling around the southwest, and the books are calling. But I can't wait for some time off. As it turns out, spending 10 days straight huddled over a microfilm machine isn't the nonstop thrill ride I had been led to believe. At least I've gotten some good work done, and incredibly quickly too. Perhaps if I can do 3 months of research in a couple of weeks, then I can write up the dissertation in a month or two?

The weekend was filled with interviews for my research - none of which were particularly notable, except for one woman, aged about 85, who decided to take me on a little driving tour of Perth and Fremantle after we had finished. As we passed through the suburbs, she kept pointing out dilapidated houses, saying things like: "There's a house from the 1950s. The architecture is so interesting, isn't it? No, not interesting. It's fascinating, just fascinating." Believe me, this was an abuse of the term fascinating. And it went on for hours and hours. Just when I was considering throwing myself from the car, we passed an old pub, built sometime in the 1920s. "Oh that's a historical pub," she said. "It's listed with the National Trust. And it's also the first in Peth to feature topless barmaids!" Now that was fascinating. How she knew about the stripper waitstaff is anyone's guess.

My friend Andrew arrives this evening, and the plan is to rent a car and drive down the coast to the wineries of the Margaret River Valley, and then loop back to the "Tall Timber Country" in the east. Wine and trees, hooray!

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