Day 1 + 2 of the
Convocation: Melbourne, Australia (December 2003)
I managed to meet up with Liam, Andrew and Ashley after I woke up
from the much appreciated nap, and we headed back to halls to stock up
on supplies before heading out. It was good to see halls again after
all this while, managed to get a photo of Roberts Hall. Introductions
were made (I only knew Liam then) and we headed out to Glen Waverley
after everyone was sorted. I had only bought along a 1 liter bottle of
water and worn my warm jumper, and was surprised to find everyone
packing bags. Needless to say, I was inexperienced with doofs (outdoor
Anyway, Liam drove down to Glen where we picked up a slab of Carlton
Draught stubbies and two packs of ice from the bottleshop. In case
anyone was wondering, I meant ice as in “the frozen form of water”.
Just to make things, er…crystal clear and all that. ;) Okay,
enough lame jokes. Ashley had brought along an esky (cooler) and the
picture you see above is a shot of Ashley and Liam loading it with beer
and packing it with ice.
I forgot the name of this town.
This was all done in the car park beside the bottleshop. We stopped
for gas after that and drove straight down to Jeeralang, where the
event was going to be held. It’s part of the Strzelecki Ranges. The
drive was slated to be about 2 hours and it does seem far away coz I
distinctly remember passing Mt Baw Baw. We did made a pit stop at a
town near the venue for KFC before continuing the journey though.
Driving up the steep road.
The road into the venue wasn’t marked, and it was a really steep
drive up. I did see a “Wildlife – Deviant Species Live” sign at one
point so we were on the right track. There was this sharp turn halfway
up that had a bent street light, so it seems that at least one car
didn’t make it to the top unscathed. ;) It was a beautiful night
though, the city lights were visible and you could see past the trees
and down into the bottom of the hill with the amazing bush air breezing
We got to the checkpoint where the promoters were and damn, was that
guy enthusiastic about the night. It gave off a great vibe. We got to
the top just when it was turning dark and I knew I made a mistake
regarding attire when I stepped out of the car. It was freezing! I
don’t know how cold it was, but the wind chill was insidious. Warm beer
never tasted so good…and there’s no need to worry about hyperthermia
issues, that’s for sure. ;)
Warmth available here.
The doof was starting music at 10 pm so we went to the hobo fire
that was going on in front of the stage. It seemed to be the most
popular spot with the weather that night. I had to make frequent trips
back to the car to warm up. It’s a good thing Liam parked near the
stage and there was this trippy light device under some trees to guide
the way. The lights refracted off the tree leaves in a surprisingly
mesmerizing manner. It felt like a psychedelic light show.
The Great Illuminating One!
The trees were a bit tricky to navigate though – there were branches
sticking out at the most unexpected places and navigating though the
maze without The Guide (which was what we dubbed the trippy light)
without being sober would be unthinkable. The first DJ set came on, and
I vaguely remember someone ordering bales of hay at one point for seats
around the fire. I haven’t acclimatized yet, so the extreme temperature
change was quite uncomfortable. The others had spare coats but I
declined and stayed by the fire instead.
Setting up the set.
The early ones…
The crowd started small and grew larger as the night went on, this
psy-trance event wasn’t heavily publicized – they probably wanted it to
be a smaller gathering for the psytrance regulars. I didn’t dance much,
I was er…mashed, so to speak and besides I was freezing my ass off in
the chilly weather. The fire was good, though it was a wood fire, so
smoke inhalation was an issue after a while beside it.
The crowd fills up…
as the night progresses.
I actually convinced myself that I had hypothermia at one point. It
wasn’t really hard to do that under the circumstances, and I was
seriously thinking about leaving. I thought I was going to freeze to
death if I stayed since the coldest spell hasn’t even hit yet.
Thankfully, the guys talked me out of that thought loop. Thanks
everyone! :) Also, Andrew gave me his warm coat, cheers for that! I
stopped thinking about hypothermia and did the second inventory stock
take and it was all lovely after that. :)
Deviant Species live set!
This one taken without flash.
I only managed to get three photos of Deviant Species playing live.
I was too mashed to move. They played till dawn was breaking…it was
amazing to see the sun rise slowly over the valleys and watch the place
light up. It really is a beautiful place to have a daylight doof in.
Check out the scenery:
The venue looks different in daylight too. I thought I saw a large
giraffe or some other animal, details are a bit hazy from the night. I
was standing at the cliffs and was surprised to see a large giraffe
appearing here, of all places. Checking with the others produced mixed
responses, but I saw it vividly, and in daylight too! That is, until
the “giraffe” moved and it turned out to be a man beside a rock with
the opposite hills making it look that way after all. :)
This was what our path to the car looked like in the light of dawn.
This is us after watching the sunrise.
Liam was recharging for the drive back so we never got a full group photo, but here’s one of us three:
L-R: Huai Bin (me), Andrew, Ashley.
To the best of my knowledge, everyone in the photo is completely
sober. It must be the lighting that made it seem otherwise. I have to
say that my memory of the night is rather fuzzy, but I can fully assure
you that no psychedelics were consumed at the particular point in time
this shot was taken.
Here’s some photos of the morning set with Santos De Castro and Paul Wright (Deviant Species):
A large frame capture from the car.
Moving into the crowd.
Deviant Species were still playing the set.
I enjoyed the talks in the car, it was great, just gotta love the
scene over in Melbourne. Excellent company – it was great to go raving
with Liam again, and I’m glad I got to know Andrew and Ashley. I had a
wonderful time. It’s not about the music, it’s about the…*cough*. :)
I’m sorry that you lost your glasses Ashley, hope you find it!
It was close to noon when we left the doof.
Memorable quotes of the night:
“I think I actually have to start earlier to warm myself up”
“Would be one hell of a come down tomorrow eh?”
“Do you want to talk about this now?”
“I can’t believe you’re yawning right after smoking that hit of meth!”
“I’m going off to check on my hallucinations now”
“I’m peaking so hard…I feel full on rushes everytime I move”
and many other classics I couldn’t remember. :)
Despite my expression when the event was over and inventory stock
clearence was done, it was worth every second of it! I’ll do it all
over again. :)