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Saturday, 8 May 2010

Happily, Meredith Jones' Don's Party-themed bash to welcome in the new government in November 2007 has raised its profile and entered the mainstream record - with two Sydney Morning Herald journalists taking time to talk with some who attended, to gauge their new opinions of the Rudd administration.

Damien Murphy and David Humphries did more than just canvass three of Meredith's fabulous guests, however. They also ventured out to Penrith, where swing voters live. It's pretty rare to find journos willing to do so much pavement bashing, and their effort deserves our heartiest applause.

Yes, Damien, the optimism has definitely faded in Sydney's latte belt, but some knew at the time that it would be disappointing.

I remember the party well, mainly because there were a lot of interesting people who, suddenly finding they had time to talk, talked about a whole range of things. The election broadcast came on quite late, but I stayed outside on the deck that juts above Meredith's kitchen garden.

The backyard is well-stocked with veggies and - perhaps now - even a chicken coop to supply fresh eggs for breakfast omelettes. I can't be sure. It's been almost a year since I left Sydney for warmer climes.

What hasn't changed is the memory of a roomful of people cheering loudly as Kevin Rudd spoke. The ballots had come in and the decisive nature of the election was clear. The dead-eyed years of Howard were over and gone. As Meredith wrote at the time, the preference would certainly have been for a Gillard victory, but Rudd "will do for the time being".

Not any more, Meredith. Right?

Pic credit: Marrickvillia.

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