On February 23rd 1925, a special dinner was held at the Gold Club in Melbourne—and Miss Fisher was the honored guest. All of Australia's high society were there. At Phryne's table sat Dorothy Williams, Jack Robinson, and Hugh Collins.
The evening began at 6:00pm. There was a society orchestra and dancing. Dinner was served at 7:30. And at 9:00, Phryne was to give a short speech.
Promptly at 9:00, a man walked up to a microphone.
"May I have everyone's attention, please?" The audience quieted down. "Thank you. My name is Mark McDonald, and I am the owner of the Gold Club. I'd like to thank all of you for coming. I trust you enjoyed your dinner." People clapped. "Very good! Now, I'd like to present my guest for the evening, and the reason for this special dinner—Melbourne's own lady detective, Miss Phryne Fisher!"
The people cheered, as she walked to the microphone. She wore a gold dress, black stockings, and gold boots, for the event.
"I'd like to thank all of you for coming to this event. And I want to thank you Mr. McDonald for holding it in my honor. Your meal was most delicious."
He smiled and nodded.
"I thought I'd give a short speech, then you can ask me questions and I'll answer them. I'm sure than many of you would like to know why a girl like me would want to become a detective. Well, the answer simply is that I seem to have a natural talent in that direction. Growing up, I read all of the Sherlock Holmes stories, and I said to myself, 'If a man can do that, why not a woman?' I'm only 29 years old, but I've done a lot of things in my time. Perhaps I'll settle on being a lady detective."
The audience clapped.
"Thank you! And so, without further ado, I'll answer questions." She pointed to a man in the front row. "Yes, you."
"How much do you charge for your services—in case I ever need you?"
"$20 a day—plus expenses. And I will do 'pro bono' work, on occasion. Yes, you?"
"Have you ever not solved a case?"
"Not yet. But if you give me a problem I can't solve, I'll give you $1000!"
There was much laughter.
"What do you say to people who say that ladies shouldn't be detectives?"
"I would say something that could get me into a lot of trouble, here!"
Again, the audience laughed.
"Do you have any advice for people who think they'd like to become detectives?"
"That's not so easy, I'm afraid. It's something you need to have a knack for. If you're good at figuring out the killer in a murder mystery before the detective does, then you might be good at being a private detective. Yes, you?"
"So, what other things have you done?"
"Like I said, quite a bit!"
There was laughter.
"I can fly a plane. I can dance. In fact, I once met Isadora Duncan—lovely girl! I've posed for a painting—au natural!"
Some in the audience were shocked by this!
"I can shoot a gun if I need to. I've driven a race car—"
"-Have you ever allowed a gentleman to drink champagne from your slipper?" asked an older man.
"Now, that's one thing I've never done!"
The audience laughed.
"Do you consider yourself to be a gentleman?"
"Well then, I will allow you that honor!"
There was much applause. She walked over to the man's table and sat next to him.
"May I have your name?"
"Mr. Rodney Enfield, at your service!"
"Please to meet you, Mr. Enfield." She crossed her left leg and took her boot off. "As you can see, I'm not wearing a slipper, but will this do?"
"It will do fine, Miss Fisher."
"Excellent! May I have a bottle of champagne?"
A waiter brought one to the table and opened it. She gave Mr. Enfield her boot. He zipped it to the top, then poured some champagne into it. Then he put the boot to his lips and downed it.
"That's the best champagne I've ever tasted!" he announced.
The audience cheered loudly.
"Well, I'm happy to hear that!" said Phryne. "May I have my boot back?"
"Here you go, Miss Fisher." He gave it to her.
"Well, since I can't wear this shoe for a while, I might as well take my other shoe off!
She did this. And in her stocking feet, she walked back to the microphone.
"Do any of you have any more questions for me?" She waited a few seconds, but nobody had any more questions. "Well then, I'd like to once again thank all of you for having me here!"
There was much applause. She walked back to her seat and received a hug from Dot and a kiss from Jack. Her boots were given back to her, but she didn't put them back on.