Oh Melbourne, how you surprised me so. And the reason that we’re here is genuine Aussie Hospitality. We are currently staying at our new friend Zena’s apartment, with her 3 awesome roommates. But first, we had a nice stay outside of Melbourne at our latest work exchange.
We met Zena while camping in Tasmania just a few weeks earlier (she got a shout out in this blog post), and after spending a few days nearby at our latest work exchange (where we painted the exterior of her house above), we ventured to Northcote. The tram from Melbourne’s CBD (Central Business District) takes just 30 minutes and drops off a 2 minute walk away from Zena’s house. On top of all this, within the first 15 minutes of arriving, Zena mentioned that we were welcome to stay at her parent’s house on the Great Ocean Road (the next leg of our journey)…even though they are off on holiday. Talk about generosity (and yes we are absolutely taking them up on this offer)…
Many of you know that I (and Alisa to a lesser extent) are over cities. After bumping into one too many people in a mindless rush in Manhattan…after living there for 6 years…the quiet rural lifestyle of many Aussies that we’ve met and stayed with has been a very welcome change from city life. Also, we were very unimpressed with Sydney’s crowded and business-like mentality. Needless to say, I wasn’t expecting too much from Melbourne, even though it is touted as being much more laid-back than it’s east coast counterpart.
Needless to say, they were right about Melbourne (not pronounced “Mel-born” or even “Mel-burn”…but “Mel-bun.”) It also didn’t hurt that we had friends to show us the ropes. We spent much of the weekend just walking the streets and taking it all in, but here are some highlights:
We can’t thank Zena, Maddy, Skaidra, Sarah, and Vinny enough for their hospitality. Melbourne has been a wonderful experience and I hope to come back someday. But for now…the open road is calling (as is Zena’s parent’s house) and it’s off to the Great Ocean Road!
Until next time,