Melbourne is such a wonderful city! It’s taken a while for me to travel here and it took an orchestral conducting school to make it happen, but my goodness I really love this culture, the city and the people.
So often it is easy to forget about the home when we are travelling. Dreaming of places to go abroad, new people to meet, places to see… we forget that even in our own familiar culture there is still so much we don’t know and so much to learn about. Travelling to this city with open eyes and a willingness to be open to something that is culturally familiar and yet still so different to everything I know made the journey feel like a really big adventure. I treated the time, not so much as though I was just going somewhere else in my home country, but simply as though I was going somewhere new with a willingness to explore and discover. It has since made me view everything about my home and the “known” differently in a really nice way.
I have to mention now that the coffee and laneways of Melbourne are legendary in Australia and abroad – and my goodness they are so worth the hype! There are countless places which are really nice to spend time in and remind me, in some ways, of the smaller ‘hyggeligt’ cafes/bars in Denmark. Conversation, clinking cups and distant music played on the streets all hum through the air in a beautiful wave that I now know is Melbourne. The city is a wonderful balance of relaxed/easy going and direction with work, an arts community and melting pot of culture making the city come alive and feel genuinely vibrant.
The conducting school was taught right near the art gallery and during our breaks we would walk past it each day (also going in to see the exhibitions twice which was great!). There was a really lovely exhibition where visitors could take a flower from an installation piece near the entry. The idea was that people would give them away to a stranger – beautiful in theory yet no one anywhere near the museum wanted more flowers! It was quite funny being rejected when trying to give strangers a flower… all part of life I guess.
The summer heat of Melbourne was lovely to be in although I would like to come back to this city again during winter. Everything felt so different to Sydney and it made me so aware that even within one culture there is a huge scale of expression in all places and all people. The space defines a people just as much as people define their surrounds. This has really been something to think about since these travels when considering where I want to live long-term, travel to, etc.
On my final morning I wanted to buy a nice thank you gift for the friends who had put me during the two weeks. They had fed me with cake, tea (of course “real food” as well), good conversation and so much fun. As I was waiting for the flowers to be made into a bouquet I one really nice conversation with the florist who gave me a gift on departure of his brightest flower.
Melbourne to me was full of good music, wonderful people and… flowers! There is still so much to see in this city and so much more to experience. Thank you and I will be back soon!
Melbourne; February 2017