November 3 already! Well, for me anyways! Most of my family and friends are still living the 2, but let me tell you about how I spent my November 2 here in Melbourne.
We waited for the sun to come back out, and when it showed it's face, we trekked to the other side of the city's CBD, or Central Business District, and saw some of the neatest graffiti I've ever seen! It's a tourist attraction here, but is hidden well enough that you need to go down some tiny alleys and side streets to find this coloured and beautiful, interesting and story telling series of graffiti walls. As you can see in the picture, the two friends I've acquired so quickly are completely opposite! Jo is a whopping 4'11" and Tim is pushing 6'9"! I fit in the middle. The three of us get along really well. Tim is from a forest fire crew in Northern British Columbia, and is going to be completing a six month contract here in the state of Victoria.
Some of the walls had everything from flowers and designs, sayings and quotes, right down to terrifying pictures of clowns and gremlins! Altogether very interesting! How artistic people can be with a can of spray paint is beyond me...
We wandered some more, before getting a craving for something cold and delicious, such as beer or cider! We all agreed that making our way to a local and very popular rooftop bar was the plan!
I had to stay at a hostel around the corner. I had checked out of the one I had been staying at... okay well, here's the story. I had booked at the YHA Melbourne Central Hostel for three days when I arrived, (So Tues/Wed/Thurs) with the option of booking for a fourth night if I needed. However, I checked out on the Thursday morning when I had the option of staying with a friend, Rocco, for the night just outside of Melbourne. There is a massive horse race here this weekend, called the Melbourne Cup. Apparently horse racing is huge here, and this weekend (four days, ending Tuesday) is such a big deal that they even take Monday and Tuesday off for it! Check out the links :)
( http://www.racingvictoria.net.au/default.aspx / http://www.races.com.au/melbourne-cup/ ) Rocco is a Stock Broker, and was coming here for work. A friend who's away offered up his apartment for Rocco and his work mate, so he offered me a room to save the hostel fees! (Yes please! Every little bit helps!) People come from everywhere in Australia for this weekend, and it is insanely busy in Melbourne. The airports are packed, and flights are extremely hard to come by, since they've been booked so far in advance. Needless to say, he couldn't get a flight until late, and had to (and very apologetically) back out of his offer. However, he felt so bad that he spent his morning searching all over for a hotel (not hostel!) for me to stay in. Hotels here in Melbourne are ridiculously expensive, and I told him a hostel was just fine, and that he didn't owe me anything - but he ended up looking after my accommodations for last night at a hostel right around the corner from YHA Melbourne Central, called NoMads All Nations. Thank you, Rocco! :) He ended up getting lucky with flights, and flew in around 9pm, since his sister works for Quantas Airlines here in Australia, and called him up saying "be at the airport in 25 minutes and you can take the next flight to Melbourne" - which he did, and this allowed us at least enough time to visit and catch up before his other mate arrived. Since the hostel had already been booked, I stayed there, but it was great to catch up and visit, and I will be seeing him again in the next few weeks. He travels a lot for work, and has offered to show me around Perth if I make it over to the west coast at all. Good to have connections! :)
So today, I checked out early, and now find myself sitting at Gloria Jean's again, with a night hot tea. I find these blogs are so relaxing to write, and I apologize if they tend to ramble on! I think of them as a sharable journal of my adventures, and love to share my life here with you all.
I'm waiting for the noon train to North Geelong, where I will be picked up by Kristen and her mom. Wishing you all a great weekend! I know I'm going to be enjoying mine!
LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE!