Melbourne Melbourne, My Kind of Town.

Trip Start May 30, 2005
Trip End Sep 30, 2006

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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Back in Melbourne on a monday morning for work. That's Nikki and Ben, not me, I've got a city to explore. I caught the train into "Work" at some point mid-morning and immediately stumbled into a coffee shop. I'd been advised that the coffee culture of Victoria's finest city was one of the finest cities in the word, and also that anyone caught going into a Starbucks in Melbourne should be shot. True enough, I had such a relaxing time, taking it easy that I almost forgot to get out and do the tourist thing.

The city was great to look at, with a great mix of old and new buildings, The flinder's street station is particularly famous for its facade and I admit I did like the look of it. The skyline of Melbourne was also a picture postcard, one that I made sure I caught. The real joy of Melbourne though is the fact that the city center is just that, in the center. Around the central area there is practically a green collar strangling the city with parks, gardens, grass and rivers. I had great weather there and found myself just wandering in these areas, sitting around and not really getting up to much. For the workers of the city I can really see how easy it is to finish your work at 5:30 and then get yourself out there for a run, row or anything else that takes your fancy. It'd be a great place to live. Although to complete my obligation to compare the two cities, Sydney is a better visiting city.

One thing that Melbourne can't do is fix sandles. My crappy Tevas broke again while in Bali and I'd not got around to getting them fixed, until here. I went back to pick them up on the second day and the shop owner was really pleased with his work, proudly saying how strong they were and then 'pretending' to put them really hard. It was a fairly convincing show but decided to check myself. I picked it up and gave it the lightest of tugs, to be honest I could have breathed on them and broke them again. I couldn't believe it. "No Problems" he said,, "I'll fix that". I should think so as well considering how much I'd paid Dick Turpin. I returned a couple of hours later, I couldn't believe what I saw. It's true that he fixed it and it wasn't about to fall apart, however he also created Frankensandle. It was hideous. There was a massive square piece of leather at the ankle attached by several large bolts of steel. He'd fufilled his side of the deal, he tickled me under the chin, patted my head and then sent me on my way. Why am I so british sometimes?

My plan for the next couple of days is to head down the Great Ocean Road, originally I'd planned to do this over two days, getting the tour bus back to Melbourne. However I changed my plans since Ben will be in Apollo bay with a car on the Friday afternoon (more on this later!), this meant that I need to find transport from Port Campbell back to Apollo bay. Despite the popularity of the Ocean road, its public transport sucks. I went to V-Line, and asked about buses between these two places. He told me that there is only ONE bus per week! how crazy is that? Mind you I could have kissed him when he told me that it was on Friday morning! That's pretty much the exact time that I needed it anyway, within a couple of hours.

My lucky day continued when I went shopping for a present for Nikki. She'd casually mentioned that she should get herself the music to 'Brick' by Ben Folds Five for the piano and learn how to play it one day. I'm a big fan of Ben Folds so I approved of this. I went to the music shop to get the piano score, but I could only find the music for the whole album 'Whatever and ever amen', when I asked about individual songs the woman said that they only had this for one of their songs, wait for it.... and it was 'Brick'!

So that pretty much wraps up Melbourne, you're right in thinking that I didn't get up to much. Can't be working too hard now!
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