…we were a tad disorganised and didn’t have candles that we brought along with us, so there were electric light candles on sale at the venue which was fine. But either side of us there were a few groups of people who had candles with them… the types of candles that you light with a lighter or a match stick and so on and that’s what you’re used to seeing at Carols by Candlelight. Partway through the night a young policewoman came along and approached these groups of people and asked them to blow out their candles because apparently it was a total fire ban yesterday. (Mike Smithson: Total fire ban yesterday? It wasn’t even a particularly hot day from memory.) Well, I haven’t gone back and checked whether it was or wasn’t… I take her word for it that it was… she was very polite and they were very obliging although after she left they were all quite miffed at the fact that they’ve come along to Carols by Candlelight only to be told that they can’t actually use candles, which strikes me as a bit of regulation gone mad, Mike, I mean I would have thought that Elder Park is hardly the type of place we’re about to set bushfires off in, and if there’s one event you might provide some sort of exemption for, surely it is Carols by Candlelight where candles are of course such a key feature of the whole event. (Smithson: Simon, I guess there is a public safety point of view here, if you’ve got… a young kid’s wearing anything synthetic, and the candle spills and the flame makes contact with clothing that’s flammable, I guess there is a public safety aspect to that?) Absolutely, Mike, and I think that’s why the electric light candles that they sell at the venue are a great thing for parents with small children and so on to have and obviously the bulk of the crowd choose to use those types of things looking around the audience that was there last night. There are still a lot of people who choose to come along… mainly adults and there was a group next to us, a group of, I’d say, nearly a dozen people in their late teens or early twenties who were coming along… who were really into the carols atmosphere and had brought their candles with the cups with the hole cut out of the bottom so that the breeze didn’t blow the candles out and they were behaving in a perfectly respectable manner and clearly were no real threat to anybody, and the idea that you can be at a carols festival and not be able to wave a candle in the air does just seem to be a little over the top, I would have thought. (Smithson: Now aside from that Simon, the music, the carols and everything else… one of those must see occasions, especially if you’ve got kids, of course?) It’s a fabulous night, so many kids getting into it all, Dizzy Raymond and the orchestra there doing a fantastic job on the music, some lovely performers, some great South Australian talent on show… it was a lovely night, we both enjoyed it and everybody who was sitting around us had a fantastic time and so many children really into it… it sets the mood of Adelaide off fabulously for Christmas… I raise this issue just because for those who were approached and told to blow out their candles, it put a little bit of a dampener on their night and I think that’s disappointing and if we’re going to have that approach in future then it needs to be pretty clear for all and sundry beforehand so as not to spoil what is otherwise a fantastic and very special night for everybody who’s there. (Smithson: Simon, thank you for sharing your experience and the slightly sadder experience for your neighbours at Carols by Candlelight. Have a good Christmas.) Thank you, Mike… to you, your loved ones and all the listeners, have a fabulous Christmas too.