Thursday, 24 April 2014

The Adventures of Captain Poprocks

We just got back yesterday from our annual pilgrimage to Melbourne for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival! This is the 10th year that we have travelled down together as a group - 19 people this year :)

Captain Poprocks, my candy hippo, travelled along with us and had some very special experiences!

It was very early on Good Friday when we arrived at the airport in Sydney. The Captain was very excited for his first ever plane flight, and spent most of the time looking out the window at the NSW/Victorian countryside going past.

We also bought some trashy magazines, and luckily the Captain is good at crosswords.

After arriving in Melbourne, Captain Poprocks made some new friends in the taxi on the way into the city!

First we left our bags in my brother's Melbourne office, and the Captain sneaked some photos in reception ;) 

We went to brunch at Tropicana, a fabulous little cafe on Elizabeth Street, which has some pretty awesome decorations.


We had an early dinner at a gorgeous little Italian restaurant off Collins Street. Captain Poprocks particularly liked Kiah's baked macaroni! 

Our first show was Puppet Up! Uncensored, by Henson Alternative, all the way from the USA. We had seen this group perform a few years ago, and just loved the combination of improvisation, muppets, and smuttiness :P The Captain even got to have his photo taken with some of the puppets and puppeteers afterwards!

On Saturday, we met up with some Melbourne friends in Lygon Street and discovered this amazing Italian bakery and coffee shop called Brunetti's. I can't believe we've never been there before! I had profiteroles and a cherry custard tart, and Kiah had this amazing chocolate caramel creation. Captain Poprocks loves sugar, but I think perhaps he indulged a bit too much...

On Saturday night we saw Matt Okine, who was very funny but also quite melancholic, and then Ali McGregor's Late-Nite-Variety-Nite-Night at the Spiegeltent. As usual, our group was in the front two rows, and as usual, we overtook most of the audience participation. There were two standup comedians, a hula girl and a musical comedian, as well as Ms McGregor herself performing songs quite outside of their usual style - all very funny and entertaining!

Captain Poprocks was brought up on stage by the first guest, Doc Brown, and I think has developed a little taste of fame! He managed to score a cuddle and a picture with the lady Ali herself after the show.

On Sunday we went to the Queen Victoria Markets to get supplies for the $5 lunch challenge. This is an idea we stole from YSA Melbourne - every person in the group is allocated to a category (meats, cheese, bread, fruit or drinks) and is allowed to spend $5 in that category.  Then we all meet up in the park and have a big picnic, sharing our finds. The Captain was too tired and hungover to come out of his bag for the picnic. 

In the evening we saw Cal Wilson, one of our favourite comedians, perform her show about what her life might have been like if she'd been born different or taken different paths. Again the Captain was too nervous to come out of his bag during the show (I was the star of this one...), but he snuck onto the stage at the end for a quick piccy. 

After the show we headed back to Fitzroy to have dinner at one of our favourite Melbourne restaurants, Palookaville. Captain Poprocks went off with another person in the group - was she a bad influence on him, or the other way around?

Easter Monday we had a free day until the evening, when it was time for our 10th Anniversary Regressive Dinner! 

We started off with liquid nitrogen icecream at LN2...

...then went to Bimbo Deluxe for pizza and drinks (and some very interesting interior design and cocktails)...

... and finished up back at our house for more cocktails and chips for entree! 

It was also a birthday day, so there was pirate ship cake!

On Tuesday we were planning to go to Acland Street, St Kilda to eat vast quantities of cake, but the weather gods conspired against us to make a cold, wet and windy day. Sensibly, we decided to stay at home! 

In the afternoon we had a super special 10th anniversary surprise - one of our favourite comedians, Tegan Higginbotham, came to do her show for us in our living room! It was pretty awesomely amazing and lots of fun, and we got a little photo with Tegan and her friend Paul Verhoeven afterwards :)

Most of the group then went to a taping of The Project at the Channel 10 studios at South Yarra, and we all met up again in the city at Stalactites for an impressive Greek feast. So much delicious meat...

It was a great trip, and I'm pleased/terrified to say that I've already received some deposits for next year's Easter Melbourne extravaganza! 

We love being away, but heading home is something special :) And now when Captain Poprocks goes to his forever home, he will have lots and lots of stories to tell!

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