After a wonderful week in Perth catching up with friends it was time to head to Melbourne. Autumnal Melbourne with wind, rain, cold, leaves on the tram tracks and the on set of black fashion as winter beckons from around then corner. I must say that I perversely enjoy this time of year and the change in the season. A trip to Melbourne would not be complete without a visit to St Kilda and one of my favourite spots, the Stokehouse restaurant on the bay. Had a great lunch with a friend whilst watching the wind catch the water setting off a cascade of white tops. You can get a sense of the weather from the picture below of the famous St Kilda pier.
I must say that I was surprised by how much I enjoyed being back in Melbourne. I adore the cafe breakfast culture, the trams and general vibe of the place. The river near Federation Square certainly looks wonderful. I was even surprised by the night out I had. I realised one thing that I miss given I am in Europe; the ability to eavesdrop in on others conversations. The small, trivial and mundane become fascinating when they are lives of others that we intrude in on. No moralising thanks, I know you all do it as well! I am not sure if it was the mix of spirits and a few much missed local beers but I found the crowd easy to connect and engage with.
Like Perth, Melbourne has also changed, however overall I felt much more at ease in Melbourne than Perth. Much has been written in the media about the two-speed economy however what I saw was a two lane society. I know that this comment will offend, in my view Perth is a city experiencing growing pains whilst Melbourne has matured and has a level of self-confidence to cope with the ebb and flow of a changing modern society / city. Having said that both are wonderful places to be.
However the best place is always home and for me that is now Amsterdam.