Simon and I went to the Diwali Festival yesterday afternoon. It was grand. We ate samosas and curries. We watched in amusement as eager teens competed in a Bollywood talent competition, which inexplicably involved a dance-off between a group of Michael Jackson impersonators and a street gang. We sampled gooseberry candies. We sipped on mango lassis. We briefly contemplated joining the ridiculously long queue for free readings.

The highlight, though, was stumbling upon the laughing clown game. Seriously. I squealed so loudly that I'm pretty sure Simon was embarrassed to be seen with me. But the thing is, the laughing clown game defines my childhood. I grew up near the Gold Coast, and when I was good my parents would take me to Grundy's, an indoor carnival. I'd ride the carousel. I'd play the laughing clown game. I'd have my face painted, tiger-styles. We'd have lunch near the Statue of David replica. We'd go down to the beach, where I'd run around giddily before collapsing melodramatically in the sand.

The laughing clown game has since become a rarity, and for a long time I thought they were extinct. That is, until yesterday (otherwise known as the Best Afternoon Ever).  We won these little cars that you eject from a gun and raced them on the footpath. I can't remember who won, but it was probably me.

Part of me feels culturally insensitive saying that my favourite part of the Diwali festival was the laughing clown game. But it totally was.


Anonymous said... @ October 12, 2009 at 10:54 PM


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