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It was Kathy’s 50th birthday on Saturday, and I took her to Melbourne to see Love Never Dies, the sequel to Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Phantom of the Opera. There were no deep social messages. It was simply entertainment, and very well done. The music was performed by a very competent small orchestra, the set design and costuming were colourful and interesting, the story worked, the characters were engaging. I was glad to see it.

That was at the Regent Theatre. As we walked back to our hotel near the Queen Victoria Market I pulled down every ‘Boycott Brenner’s’ poster I saw, and threw them in the bin. There were a lot. Only once did anyone ask me what I was doing. I said the posters were Nazism – telling lies to get people to hate Jews.

If people had torn down the swastikas when they first appeared, and refused to accept the scape-goating of the Jews, the Second World War and the Holocaust might never have happened. There are some things that must not be tolerated, cannot be tolerated, in any society that wants to believe itself civilised.

The next day we went to the Tutankhamen exhibition at the museum. The most interesting part for me was the DNA research into Tutankhamen’s ancestry. I had not known that Tutankhamen was Akhenaten’s son. Some of the items recovered from the tomb were in remarkable condition – colours still bright after 3,000 years.

I heard a young man behind me ask why there wasn’t anything about Cleopatra. His girlfriend told him that there wouldn’t be, cause she was like, his aunt or something.

That night we went to the Melbourne Central shopping centre and had a superb meal of sushi and sashimi at Tomodachi. We also went to see Cowboys and Aliens. Again, no great social message, no environmental or political agenda, just pure entertainment. It was fun. Daniel Craig was especially good – cool and tough, much like his version of James Bond. The only minor disappointment was that the film was one scene too long. The final scene in town added nothing, and detracted from the brilliant poignancy of the preceding scene with Lonergan, the cabin and hummingbird. That one mistake took it from a B+ to a good C.

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