Ten years ago this week Crowded House had their Farewell To The World concert on the steps of the Sydney Opera House. Last night I watched the new 10th Anniversary DVD and it's still bloody magnificent. I was so devastated the day after that concert, back in Bathurst and getting ready for my shift at the fish and chip shop. I couldn't bear to listen to the Crowdies for about six months; I was just so overcome by the loss. Woe! But somehow I managed to struggle on. A decade later I peered at our spot on the stairs, surprised I couldn't pick us out in the massive crowd. I thought I'd be visible even in the moonlight, either from the violently sunburned face or the enormous angst-ridden frown because I'd just finished my first year of university and was worried I wouldn't pass all my subjects. Don't fret petal, I'd say to 1996 Shauna, You end up becoming a secretary so you won't even need that degree! I wonder if a concert of that scale could happen today? Can you imagine allowing over 100,000 random bodies to just wander on down to the Opera House for free entertainment? A massive public gathering at a major landmark? Holy security alert, Batman. I remember marvelling at how generally well-behaved and civilised the punters were back then, but I don't know if we'd be trusted these days. There'd have to be metal detectors and cavity searches and riot police. I remember a guy climbed up one of the sails of the Opera House and the cops asked him sternly but nicely to please come down. Today they'd have a vicious Alsatian posted on the point of each sail. An Alsatian, brandishing a semi-automatic weapon.
Photo nicked from The Age (Rick Stevens)