“He’s definitely his mother’s son”, I whispered to my friend, as we saw Ronan Farrow walk on stage at the Sydney Opera House yesterday. Though famously part of the Woody Allen-Mia Farrow extended family, he’s become more famous in the last year or so, thanks to the articles he wrote about Harvey Weinstein, and sexual abuse and intimidation.

Aside from the Weinstein case, the discussion also focussed on the current diplomatic position being taken by the United States, the subject of a book he has written. “Splendid Isolation” was how I remember it being described in high school history classes, a reference to the period leading up to the First and Second World Wars.

Though not without its faults, he said he thought the consequence of this isolationist approach by the United States was that it was making room for China to exert it’s influence in many countries, which he thought was far worse in the long term.

There was only one reference in the discussion to his famous family, and that was a question about whether or not this privileged position had opened or closed doors, as he reported on the abuse cases in Hollywood. “Both”, he said, adding that you just have to live with it, and get on with the job. On a personal level, he also described the threats and intimidation he suffered in seeking to tell the stories, adding that it was nothing compared to what others had gone through.

Along with a couple of glasses of wine afterwards with a good friend, it was an awesome way to spend the first day of spring.

And just add it’s getting warmer, I’m headed to somewhere warmer still. For two weeks, I’m working in Darwin.

Though I’ve been to and from Darwin for work a few times, it was actually the first time I visited Darwin for work that I started this blog in April 2002.

Before that, Damien and I had visited Darwin in 1998. Sleeping on a friend’s balcony (because that’s what you can do in Darwin when it’s 33 degrees all year round), we also went on trips to Katherine and Litchfield. In 2002, I also visited Kakadu. I’m looking forward to doing some further sightseeing in this trip outside work.

It’s a long flight to Darwin, about four and a half hours, and it can be quite expensive, which is why I’m catching a Sunday morning flight up and the red eye back.

The flight’s been an interesting exercise in communication. In front of me, there’s been a man who immediately put his seat in recline. I find it bizarre because he’s spent the entire flight leaning forward over his tablet. He looked around twice, hoping I’d give him the go ahead to put his seat back even further. Rudely, he hasn’t spoken a word, or even asked if I minded. It’s not as though he doesn’t speak English. I know he does. The other annoying person on the flight is a nearby woman who has spent the entire flight so far taking. Not loud enough so I can understand, but loud enough to be annoying. Normally this stuff wouldn’t annoy me, because I sleep well on planes, and am usually unconscious before takeoff.

This is the first time I’ve flown domestically with an internet connection. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not, though it had meant I’ve had the time and space to update my blog.

This trip to Darwin has a wonderful synchronicity about it. When I traveled for work in 2002, my friend Kate came to visit for a while. She’s spent the last couple of months working in a remote community in Western Australia, and she’ll be stopping over in Darwin for a couple of nights, on her way to her next adventure in Beijing.

I haven’t seen her for a couple of months, so it’ll be great to catch-up.

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