When the fat hit the fire at Sydney's Pearl Palace restaurant Kim Wilde was safe in a cab on the way to her motel. It took six fire engines to douse the blaze which partically destroyed the kitchen. Kim, a vivacious blonde, doesn't always leave a blazing trail when she eats out in strange towns. But she does have a vast army of teenage boys swirling in her slipstream.
'I had been in the restaurant two hours when I decided to go home to bed because I was knackered', Kim laughed. 'I had been gone only two minutes when the fire started. I was very lucky.' Kim, 20, has been burning the candle at both ends since arriving here to promote her hit single 'Kids in America' and the follow-up 'Chequered Love'.
During the day she has been flat out doing interviewsand at night exploring restaurants. But Kim hasn't bothered to bring a chaperone. 'My brother Ricky is too busy', Kim said, 'so is my dad.' Kim's father - for the uninitiated, is sixties rock star Marty Wilde. Kim figures her lifestyle doesn't neccessitate a protector. She said: 'I don't like living in the fast lane. I hate being out of it. I don't like benig drunk or being high. There are the occasional nights when I get a few down. I'm only human.'
Kim has inherited much of her abstinence from her father. She says: 'I've seen how happy he is without it. Most of his friends are not in show business.'
Kim answers her own fan mail but admits the task is getting beyond her. 'Most of the letters are very nice', she says. 'I'm very disappointed with my fans. Where the hell are those dirty letters?' Kim laughs, rolls her eyes and dampens the dreams of the mackintosh mafia by saying: 'I'm only joking but I expected a lot more nasty letters.'
There are occasions when Kim needs her privacy. 'I grease my hair back', she confided, 'that usualy works.' But what of her ambitions? Says Kim: 'My most imminent ambition is to have dinner with Elvis Costello but I haven't even met him yet. He turned me on to George Jones. I love them singing Stranger In The House. I also like George singing A Man Can Be A Drunk Some Days But A Drunk Can't Be A Man'.
And no, Km is not in love with George Jones. Or any other man just now. At least, not until she has dinner with urban cowboy Costello.