Saturday, June 23, 2012

June 23. Day 175. The people you meet

People are endlessly fascinating. I love taking up a position in a street side cafe and just indulging in a spot of people watching.
But the real joy comes in speaking to people and finding out their stories. When I first meet a new batch of journalism students they seem slightly horrified about approaching strangers and asking them personal questions. I promise them, truthfully, that actually most people love a chat. You just need to be polite and interested.
Just after 7am this morning I met a fascinating bloke cooking up breakfast on the barbecue near the West End ferry terminal. He had a nice face so instead of the normal "Hi" that everyone on the path exchanges I stopped.
Leong Lau was cooking up a huge pot of lamb stew while listening to music and working on his lap top.
He told me that his day would then involve yoga and then he'd get down to work on the production he was working on.
It's a rock musical, he said, and then he rolled off the names of all the countries he'd been in recently collecting bird sounds for the piece. Look me up on You Tube he said and then happily posed for a photograph provided I promised to email him one.
Turns out that Leong Lau is a very accomplished Indonesian Australian musician best known for his '70s albums Dragon Man and That Rongeng Sound. He was mostly a tenor sax player but now the trumpet is his thing.
The rock musical will be called Monkey and Leong says it will "ravage the entertainment industry worldwide for generations to come".
Fascinating. But he would have been the guy with the nice face wearing the beanie had I not bothered to stop.
You never know unless you ask.


  1. Hi Susan, Have just stumbled across your blog as I've been trying to track down Leong Lau for a program I produce for ABC Radio. I really enjoyed surfing around your blog though. It's just the kind of thing I enjoy......nice work. I don't suppose you could help me get in touch with Mr Lau? You can email me jordie.kilby@gmail.com

  2. Ha!!! Well done Susan ... once a journo, always a journo!