Peter kept to his word by making sure we arrived at the AR Conference at the Westin LAX Hotel by 4pm. I caught up with my roomies: Brittyn from Portland and Susana from Seattle who went downstairs to register while Peter, Sheila and I showered. One of the things I was excited about the conference for was to finally meet Marisa Miller Wolfson whose new documentary, Vegucated screened at 5pm. The documentary is a fun, happily contagious (like Marissa) adventure about three New Yorkers who go vegan for six weeks and the effects this change has on their lives. Marissa said in the opening that the beginning to end of the film were all done with low budget, this is noticeable in some parts, but overall the film is great and it will be launched all over the country soon.
I finally caught up with Denis and his mum, Anne who were also in the audience and spent a bit of time with the two of them before they had to leave and I had to eat. For dinner Sarah from Xs to Os Bakery organised takeaway from Veggie Grill where I had the Bali Bliss US$6.75: Indonesian styled tempeh, sautéed and grilled with lettuce, tomato, red onion, chipotle ranch on a bed of kale:
I had dinner with Sarah, her partner Linwood from Motive Clothing Company and good friend Jared near the Motive table. I look forward to getting to know Sarah and Lin better. I already miss hanging out with Peter and Sheila.
After hanging out at Button Makers, Peter picked me up to start our road trip adventure South from Seattle to LA. We then picked up a mutual friend of ours, Sheila, who I'd met last year at the Washington DC AR Conference at Greenlake. Sheila had been staying with her Aunt and Uncle for a few nights and her Aunt made the best hummus that we ate with kale. We travelled along the I5 and stopped at Whole Foods in Portland to get some snacks for the trip and dinner including Wild Wood tofu, Dave's Killer Bread and banana with Earth Balance margarine - my favourite.
Here's a photo of the grass where Sheila and I did some yoga when we had a break stop:
The latest T.O.F.U. magazine is a pay-what-you-desire downloadable full-colour vegan magazine. I have an article Promoting Veganism in the latest issue, Spring 2011 (see the pic below) The creators, Ryan & Kira takes some time out to answer some of my questions.
Rex picked me up at the Seattle/Tacoma airport after 7pm and we headed to his and Rebecca's place in Des Moines where their vegan friends were waiting for us for Games Night to begin. Every other Monday a Games night is organised with various vegans in the Seattle community taking place at various houses. Tonight we played Shadows over Camelot that I won't even attempt to explain the rules for, but it ended up being a lot easier to play than it first seemed. We all ate pizzas that Rebecca had bought and heated in the oven along with some vegetables and dips. Then we played Scattergories which was a lot easier than Shadows over Camelot! The last time I stayed in Seattle I also stayed with Rex & Rebecca and it was probably my favourite place to be, probably a lot to do with the company!
Today is the first day of my US adventures for 2011! This time I'm going for 8 weeks and I can't wait. First stop is a 13 hour flight to LA. I arrived at the airport quite early as my Dad was also flying to work this morning, so Mum dropped him off at the domestic terminal and then me at the International terminal. As I was more than 3 hours early for my flight I couldn't check in until three hours before the flight leaving so I caught up on computer work and emails. Had a Subway Vegie Delight while waiting, not the most exciting food to start my journey, but okay.
The flight left Brisbane at 10:25am and was meant to be an early arrival at LAX which ended up not happening. I pretty much fell asleep as soon as I sat in my chair, which was great as we had to wait quite awhile for people to board. I'm glad that I can fall asleep easily when flying otherwise it would be quite tedious. Luckily my ankle seems to be healed since twisting/spraining it on Saturday jumping off of the stage at Jodi's party in Byron Bay.
My family and some friends headed to new vegetarian restaurant, Pink Lily in Springwood on Monday night 4 July to celebrate my second last dinner in Brisbane for awhile. Teresa the owner and chef opened the restaurant especially for us, the official opening is July 15. Pink Lily is located in Brisbane's Southside and is part of the Springwood Towers apartment block.
NOTE: Pink Lily opened for business on Monday 25th July 2011. Please phone 07 3387 7090 for bookings and reservations or
I have a close friend, Jodi Ruckley, who is an inspiring lass. She's been a vegan animal activist for years and spends her time in Australia and France spreading the vegan message however she can. Jodi has recently started a not for profit group Our Place on Earth and aims to open an animal sanctuary around Northern New South Wales as soon as she can. One of the ways Jodi has been spreading the vegan message the past few months is via a 500km walk (which is just over 310 miles) from Australia's capital, Canberra, to end up at Byron Bay Saturday 2 July.
I received an email earlier this year, and finally got to met a lovely lass, Lara Drew, who came to Brisbane from her hometown of Canberra to attend my Green Earth Day festival. Lara recently graduated with a Bachelor of Community Education and for her final year project she had the opportunity to research an issue in the community. This is Lara's story she's compiled (and somewhat of a guest blog!) on the plight of factory farmed turkeys in Australia.
Once again some friends and I took our families to the Loving Hut Mother's Day buffet to celebrate Mother's Day. Even though Eric didn't deliver on his promise of the now-no-longer-available-at-Loving-Hut-Mt-Gravatt Singapore Noodles being available for all to consume on this day only, he once again out did himself with the menu (including the punch below):
There's a new raw, vegan restaurant in town and it's at the Sunshine Coast - about time I know for all you vegans up that way who have had slim picking for years now. So, join me as Renata, Nick and I ventured to Kind Living Cafe one Tuesday in early May:
If you happen to be on the M1 highway between Gympie and the Sunshine Coast and see a billboard with the word vegan on it, fear not, it's the lovely Dave & Mandy from Vegan Era who have raised funds to erect this billboard:
Keep an eye out for other sightings in Queensland in the near future.
So I organised, promoted, marketed etc an all-vegan environmental festival, Green Earth Day that took place on Saturday 12 March and as it was just so exhausting and overwhelming this year I went away for awhile afterward.