For my birthday Ben took me for a trip down to Melbourne. I finally got the photos off my camera, so I figured it was time to show some of the good ones. There are some other ones on my flickr page, if you want to look at them.
I always feel a bit sad that I haven’t really seen that much of my country. I have all these grand plans to go overseas on holidays, but at the same time I’ve only recently properly travelled out of my home state. I’d been saying for ages that I’d like to go to Melbourne (and people kept saying I would like it) so when Ben decided to pay for a trip down there for my birthday I was stoked. We’d talked about it earlier in the ear, but once I quit my job I figured that was just another thing to put off until reemployment.
I had found a site on my online travels called ‘air bnb’, where people rent out their spare rooms or whole apartments, so you can stay in an actual house rather than a hotel. We found the cutest little place right near Brunswick St that was also pretty cheap to rent, so we went for it and it was perfect for the two of us. I wish the weather had been better so we could have had breakfast outside, but that’s what you get for going to Melbourne in winter.
As soon as we dropped our stuff off we for a walk down Brunswick St and chose a place that looked neat to have something to eat. The pizzas were delicious! That is one thing I can say with certainty about Melbourne: all the food we ate was amazing and I wish the trip had been longer so we could eat more. The random pizza was good, the yum cha was good, the pasta we had at Little Italy was good. Even the food we cooked for ourselves one of the nights was delicious. I don’t know how we lucked out on the food front, because everything was so great. I don’t know how the coffee side of the trip went, but Ben didn’t seem to have any real complaints that I can remember. There were a lot of coffee brands we didn’t recognise, which made it hard to be choosy.
We met up with a local friend at a pub where we saw some local bands and enjoyed them so much that Ben bought their albums. It made me sad that so many places like the Hopetoun have closed down around these parts and it’s harder for local musicians to get a foot in the door. The bar we went to that night was pretty awesome and looked like it had a lot of local people playing regularly, which was nice. It was a good night, but I was pretty knackered by the end of it.
The next day we went into the city properly. We started off with the museum. It was pretty awesome, with a big ‘forest’ type section right in the middle of the building, where we saw heaps of animals. I found a Satin Bowerbird’s bower, and was showing it to Ben when we realised the bowerbirds where right near us! We watched a poor bird get rejected that day; Obviously he needed more blue things to impress the ladies. That section also seemed to be the place where small screaming children congregated, but they also liked to run, so the majority of them overtook us pretty quickly and we were left to looking for the animals hiding in tanks.
There was also a big room full of stuffed animals, which was pretty creepy. Taxidermied animals always look just a bit wrong, so wandering through a room of them was a bit off-putting. Sure it was interesting to look at the different animals, and there were little touch screen things that would tell you information about them all, but it was still kinda creepy. We also looked at a lot of dinosaur skeletons, and learned a heap of things about the human brain. Museums are super great, I forget that sometimes.
The weather was pretty miserable for most of the trip. I constantly thought my face was going to fall off from the cold; I’m glad I brought my scarf and gloves, they got a lot of use. Most of the time it was pretty dreary, but still pretty with the remaining autumn leaves. Thankfully my umbrella fit into my bag easily so we were always prepared, and we also didn’t mind sitting at the house to keep warm. We had planned to go and have a heap of cocktails at various bars on the night of my birthday, but it was ridiculously cold and dreary so we just stayed in. And that in itself was a nice way to spend the time.
The trip was pretty last minute, so we didn’t really plan anything to do other than go to the museum and get yum cha for my birthday. It was nice to just be free to do whatever, but next time we go (and we definitely will be going again) we’ll have to look into things a bit more. It also felt a little too short to do as much as I would have liked. I think next time if we have more time to organise ourselves and work out what we want to do it will be an even better trip than this one. Hopefully this will be the start of a trend of us actually going travelling together more.