I’m holding down the fort here in Melbourne for a few more days.
Things are good, but there’s not much to report. All I do is sleep in, do a bit of exploring by day, and go out socializing every night. Not very “wild”, compared to my surf trip up the east coast, or my upcoming road trip. I figure I should hit the road and enjoy the country while it’s still warm. I can come back and enjoy the city when winter comes.
On Tuesday I start my big adventure over to Perth via the Great Ocean Road, Grampians National Park, Adelaide, Kangaroo Island and the Nullarbor Plain. A little over two weeks to travel a distance roughly equal to that between New Orleans and Los Angeles.
My Amazon Kindle is missing, and I’m pretty sure it was stolen. I either left it in the shared bathroom (setting it on top of the urinal and forgetting about it) and someone made off with it, or it was taken from my room by the guy who checked out on the day I noticed it missing.
I really have no idea which scenario is more likely. The guy seemed trustworthy, but at the same time I’ve never misplaced valuable electronic equipment before.
The people at the front desk say that something similar to what I described may have been turned in to the Lost+Found, but is now missing. Unfortunately they can’t verify that they ever actually had it. If it doesn’t turn up I’ll have to buy a new one and guard it with my life.
Back to paper books for now, which is a pain in the ass since I’m halfway done with Infinite Jest and would rather finish it than start something new.
I’m still shocked by how nice people are here.
Almost every time I suspect someone is being sarcastic, they aren’t: I walked up to a group of girls at The Carlton and one immediately says something along the lines of “Oh, so you think you’re just going to walk up here and we’re going to become good friends and exchange phone numbers just like that?”, which I took as some sort of sarcastic, bitchy, “go away” line. But no, she was legitimately interested in becoming friends and exchanging numbers right off the bat. And that’s how my phone met “steph wants to show u melbourne”.
Steph’s friend Alice was drunk as a skunk and felt it necessary to vehemently list all of her grievances with the United States. The girl said she normally hates Americans (her only exposure being the numerous US military guys who come to Australia on leave from Iraq), but that I was cool and worth buying drinks for (I’d like to think so). Also worth noting that Alice is taller than me and could probably kick my ass. And that’s how my phone met “alice anti-america”
– I ran into two Danish guys from surf camp (Martin and “quiet tall guy”) at the St. Kilda music festival. Completely random, since the last place I saw them was in Byron Bay — over 1000 miles away. They spent a few weeks working as roofers in Queensland in the brutal heat before saying “fuck this” and flying to Melbourne.
– I finally memorized all of the street names that make up the grid in the Central Business District.
– Current favorite bar at the moment is The Carlton. Open “late” (2am?) Monday-Wednesday, “very late” (3am?) on Thursday and Sunday, and “very, very late” (after 4am) on Friday and Saturday. Honorable mention may go to Pony which is open until 7am and has live music.
– A person that sells fruit is a fruiterer. Yes, three syllables are apparently necessary for this.
– Pashing is what couples do on couches in dimly lit areas of bars and clubs. Pashing is the new snogging. Abbreviated from “passionate kiss”, apparently.
– Heaps remains to be heaps popular wherever I go. By far the most useful Aussie slang so far.