The most liveable city in the world
I rarely come to places with no opinion, probably a side effect of age and exposure to people, in the case of Melbourne however this is exactly how I felt 60 hours ago.
I knew little about it apart from the fact that the Australia GP has been contested here for quite some time, it also was in Adelaide for a time, the Australian tennis open is contested here and the MCG (Melbourne Cricket Ground) is arguably the home of Australia Cricket.
It is for this reason that I choose to spend a couple of days here before I start cycling the Australian South coast.
Saturday, May 16
First I took the tram and went around the inner circle. All the trams in the CBD are free so the movement is really easy, no worry if you have to nip back to the hostel and then continue from where you left.
Then I went to the Queen Victoria Market, a covered market where you can find, well, pretty much everything.
Adam told me that if I was coming to Melbourne I had to catch up with a very good friend of him called Andrew McLeod and I duly did, we arranged to meet at his place and that gave me the opportunity to walk to south Melbourne and see a bit of town I would otherwise have missed.
The bit of South Melbourne where Andrew lives is particularly nice, it retains most of the original features that were presents when it was first settled and even Andrew’s house has a lot of period features and huddles of character.
What I was not prepared for however was what was going to come next. I coped ok with the visit to a gallery run by one of Andrew’s friends but after that another of Andrew’s friends, Paul, joined us with his son and I was informed that the four of us were going to go to Albert Park where I would be taught how to play Aussie Rule Football.
Fortunately I left Albert Park without major concussions and only a couple of soil marks on the trousers. I knew I’d be paying for that today as I felt I was using muscles that had not been dusted in years.
After I left Andrew I wondered back towards the CBD and as I was getting closer to the hostel I noticed that the headache I had been nursing since I came off the plane was coming back. That made me decide to slow the exploration right down, to take a couple of paracetamols and to entertain a more relaxed activity. What better than sink my aching body in a comfortable cinema seat and watch a movie. so I did.
After the end of it, by the way “it” was in fact the new Avengers movie, there was nothing else left than wander back and go to bed.
Sunday, May 17
While the first night I had the three people room all for myself, the second night I had a full complement of roommates. This did not prove to be a problem though as they were quite quiet and I only woke up once and it was more to do wiht needing more paracetamol for the headache than the noise in the room.
The weather was fantastic so I decided to get going and decide where I was going to visit as I was going.
I got off the Tram at Federation Square and from there I started a tour that took me along the river all the way to the MCG (Melbourne Cricket Ground) and then back to the CBD after having explored a bit more of “arty Melbourne”.
Round about 15:00 in the afternoon I went back to the hostel as the san was coming up in Modena and, not being sure how many opportunities I’ll have to video conference between Melbourne and Sydney, I thought it was good to touch base with my mother.
After that it was out again and down to the docklands before walking up the river and ending up at the Eureka Sky deck, the highest observation deck in the southern hemisphere from where got some spectacular view of the whole Melbourne region.
Again I have been very lucky with the weather and it should continue like that for at least another day or two so I’ll probably get on my way relatively trouble free tomorrow. After that I’m sure at some point I will get the bill for all this good fortune.
P.S. I have now made an opinion on Melbourne.