Melbourne Day 1

// Here come the Melbourne posts //

Ahh, Melbourne. The trip was finally here.

It's been a while -- just over 9 months since I last set foot in the city of Melbourne, though, to be fair, the last time I was here I didn't actually get to experience Melbourne, and was instead shunted off to the outskirts of Monash University.

So, the real 'last' time I was in Melbourne CBD would have to be mid-way through January, during the excessive heat-wave that packed a 44 degrees Celsius punch. Pleasant memory, isn't it?

But alas, there was something about Melbourne that drew me back. Something about being in a city that faintly reminded me of my own home -- Sydney. Something about the vibrance and culture that the city gave off. It drew me back.

Or maybe it was because one of my close friends was there and I wanted a short holiday with my other friends as a late post-high-school celebration get-away.

Either way, whatever the reason, I found myself meeting my friends at the airport and ready to jetset into Melbourne.

The weather was cooler, definitely. Though, Melbourne is notorious for its extreme weather changes, and I can assure you I was exposed to this first-hand within the first day of arrival. Out of no where, rain starts falling, but as my Melbournian friend JH said ever-so-wisely, "The good thing about Melbourne is that if it starts raining, you just have to wait five minutes and it'll be gone." The weather was good though. Bright, sunny, but not unbearably hot.

After being momentarily disorientated at Southern Cross Station, the unofficial tour guide -- a so called friend, JH -- arrived to greet us all and show us around, because honestly, we were hopeless on our own.

Anyway, we arrive at our little City Garden Hotel, smack bang in the middle of the CBD, and gladly unpack. The day was an obligatory free day, so we all dispersed and agreed to meet for dinner later on in the day.

MM's baby guarded our hotel room
With our friendly tour guide in tow (or, rather, he wasn't allowed to abandon us in the grid city, so was forced to show us around), we navigated around the CBD with a dense, crash-course-reminiscent tour of Melbourne, passing all the usual.

Typical Flinders
Flinders Station, the Yarra River, catching a few trams, understanding the free tram system, State Library, and so on. We stumbled across a nice little sunflower field, just randomly.

Free trams! So handy. I kind of miss them.
One thing that I noticed about Melbourne was the colour and the life of the city. Works of art scattered across the CBD, popping up randomly, and buildings of unique configuration and bright colours -- it was something I wish Sydney had.

Melbourne, the city that is proclaimed to be the "sophisticated cousin" of the business-like Sydney. It felt good to finally meet and to truly experience the city for what it was.

This was really emphasised when we passed a random park on the side of the road that was absolutely blooming with flowers and sunflowers. It was truly a remarkable sight to see the cityscape far off in the distance, yet be immersed into an entire field of bright flowers.

The park itself was gorgeous as well, and there was a magnificent hill with nice stone structures at the bottom.

Seeing all these sights kind of made me think, "Man, if I lived in Melbourne, I'd go to these nice parks every day. I wish I had these sights in Sydney.", but then I started to question whether we actually do have these things in Sydney, and I'm just too lazy or too accustomed to it all that I fail to notice it.

Sometimes you start to wonder if home is as beautiful as being away from home. There are many, many idioms and sayings that I could probably quote to describe this feeling ("The grass is greener on the other side" "You don't know what you've got till it's gone"), but let's not go there.

You start to see things in the city that you wonder if you'd be able to see back home; whether or not you've just be neglecting the sights in Sydney.

An impractical park bench.

We had a lot of time to burn, so after walking around here, we thought we'd pay a quick pass-by Hosier lane, because that's one of the must-see alleyways of Melbourne.

Not going to lie though, I really liked the quaint feel of small alleyways brimming full with cafes and nice exterior design. It really is refreshing, and a change from the musky view of Sydney's alleyways.

Hosier Lane itself was a really nice change, as well. It was kind of underwhelming because of all the tags that people had drawn over the art, and there were quite a few people so good photographs were difficult to manage. The ever-present smell of aerosol paint was also unsettling, but it was a lane that I thoroughly enjoyed and the colours, oh the colours!

Hungry stomachs started to urge us to go to Changgo, which was a Korean BBQ restaurant that we had planned to meet at for dinner.

Thus, our eager selves found us at the door half an hour early before opening, but we waited patiently till opening time.

Except for JH, I suppose. What a creep.
We ordered the specialty; nine flavours of pork belly, and I can tell you it was delicious.

Or maybe I'm just biased because I love pork belly.

It was good food though.

Already, within the first day, I was stunned at the sheer amounts of good food in Melbourne. There was no way I'd be able to anticipate or guesstimate the amount of money that would fly out of my wallets straight into the cashiers of various restaurants during my trip in Melbourne. Might I just say though, it was well worth it.

With a few of us up for a challenge, and much eagerness, I finally brought my friends to the notorious Crazy Wings in Melbourne.

We have a Crazy Wings in Sydney, too, but the spicyness of the wings is far less. Melbourne is where it's at.

It's not like the Crazy Wings there actually taste good; they don't -- you're better off eating the other dishes offered at this Chinese restaurant -- but the wings are definitely a novelty item to try.

They. Are. Spicy.

Well, judging by my friends' responses, at least. If you can finish one wing, that's already a feat worth commemorating. I didn't manage to consume much, because I'm 98% sure I'm hypersensitive to spicy food, but let's just say that Hungry Jacks gained a lot of cash from our continuous purchases of Sundaes and Frozen Cokes in an attempt to quell the flames.

Initially it takes a while for the spicyness to hit -- "Oh it's not that bad" is basically everyone's first response, but after about 30 seconds after that... Man, it hits home.

If I had to make a list of things that you had to do in Melbourne, Crazy Wings would be up there.

Actually stole this photo from my album from a year ago but eh

The food was glorious, the day was long, and our legs were exhausted. It was a nice end to Day 1.


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Hello! I'm a student from Australia. I like photography, am aspiring to be a Doctor, have fallen in love with many things that life has to offer, and hope to see more of it. I've been blogging for a while and over the years what it means to me has changed. Currently still trying to figure that out, but here I am in a weird hybridisation of photography, film, blogging, and the confusion of a young adult, you'll find me here writing about my experiences and life. Or whatever tickles my fancy. Whether that's entertaining or not is yours to decide. Stay hydrated, kids.