Tonight I went to see the movie Dr Strange and discovered that I have a super power which lets me enter new dimensions – walking.
Instead of catching the bus from Coogee to the Spot at Randwick to see the movie, I decided to walk. On the way there, it was a revelation how close the cinema actually was. The buses are so slow and infrequent that I’ve started to think of Randwick as somewhere distant, like the City or Newtown. But it actually only takes 20 minutes to walk the mile which separates me from it – the same time it used to take me to walk to the station to buy my comics when I was a kid. Sure, going uphill on the way there is slightly strenuous, but the workout gave me the perfect excuse to enjoy a beer on the balcony of the Ritz Cinema bar.
The film was a total trip of computer-generated augmented reality. Coming out of the darkened screening room into the bright labyrinth of the art-deco cinema, patrons had trouble working out which door was the way out. We joked that perhaps we were trapped in another dimension. The stairs down with their geometrically-patterned carpet looked like they could dissolve at any moment into a multi-dimensional Escher tableau.
Walking around at night is really to enter another world. There is a little short-cut through a neighbourhood garden just before The Spot, lined with palm trees, with no street lights. The fruit-bats shrieked in the fig trees and the crescent moon was haloed with mist. Down on Dolphin St, someone has sculpted a pair of bushes under a street-lamp into perfect spheres. A few blocks on, the stink of sea-salt wafted over from the beach. Suddenly I was home again. What a magic, mystical evening!