Melbourne Part 1

Arvo! I’m finally on my second post after trying to figure out what I want to write on my second post. Thinking about what to write for each post is really tougher than finding the content for it. I mean, if you were to just choose any random topic to speak about each week, it would be similar to my lecturer’s (Dr Robert Hassan) suggestion that blogging could be really simplified into “white noise“. At the same time, there is a code of ethics  that one of the tutor’s in the course, Suneel Jethani, would suggest to keep in mind. This code of ethics by CYBERJOURNALIST. NET was modified and modelled after the code of ethics by the Society of Professional Journalists. The code of ethics for blogging works more as a self-regulatory code within the blogging community and does not have any legal standing or regulatory body that enforces it, however, it serves well as a framework for bloggers to think about when writing their next post. Being my first time blogging and with the topics that are discussed during my lectures and tutorials, the theoretical part of this study of blogging just creeped into my post.

Ok…my bad…I digress…

Been in Melbourne for a year and a half (and counting…), so I thought it be only right that I blog about my stay here. I will do my best to describe Melbourners without stereotyping them (forgive me if I do, its the people whom I’ve met that form these impressions).

People – Laidback, really friendly and welcoming.

Culture – Footy, Barbies (Barbecues), Drinking, Australian slangs (there’s just no end to this and not to forget the accent which is really unique), Arts (lots of art houses and indie theatres) and Sports in general.

Food and Drinks – Top-notched.

Know where this is? That building in brownish-gold that seems to be perhaps Victorian and of historical value, would be the Flinders Station along Flinders Street. Serving as the interchange for many train lines in Victoria, it is one of the busiest stations with thousands of people commuting through each day. Most commuters would have to exit at Flinders Station to get into the Central Business District(CBD) in the Melbourne City. Flinders Station reminds me very much of Singapore’s Raffles Place Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Station as both stations serve as interchanges to other train lines and are the main stations to enter each of the cities. One social issue that people in both cities raise is the fact that public transport is unable to handle the number of commuters each day resulting in breakdowns and delays of the services. I personally find that transport as a form of technology  empowers individuals by allowing us to speed up thus changing the dynamics of space and time, much like computing that gives us the Internet and social media. One only realizes the importance of such technology when we are going about our daily lives without it (Food for thought here…)

Raffles Place MRT Station, Singapore

While surfing the net, looking for photos of Melbourne, I came across Footmark which is a blog in Malay which Google efficiently helped to translate for me. It is a blog by a budget traveler that recorded her trip in Melbourne in terms of locations visited and cost of the trip. Though the content of her blog is quite similar to mine (that being in terms of tourist attractions and scenic photos), I found it an interesting take on travel blogging as her post on Melbourne was similar to a travel guide that reminds me of a Lonely Planet Guidebook. Check out Footmark, it’s a good take on Melbourne! (remember to translate it!)

Another blog I came across that I felt I could connect with was Everyday Melbourne. Everyday Melbourne is seen through the perspective of an Asian living in Melbourne much like this blog. It connected with me on a personal level as the places that were shared were really places that you have to walk about on the streets and stumble upon by chance. On this note, one place in Melbourne   I would recommend to visit is the suburb of Carlton which lies on the fringe of the Melbourne CBD. It isn’t too far away from the touristy places that travel guides would recommend, so after checking out the recommended tourist attractions and if you have the time, do give Carlton a good look (along with a slow walk). I personally recommend walking around Carlton in winter with a cup of hot coffee.

What you can find in Carlton:

1) Students from the University of Melbourne and RMIT.

2) Piazza Italia @ Argyle Square – outdoor airing of films in the evenings on different days of the week.

3) Lygon Street – Also known as Little Italy. Has many authentic Italian restaurants and Gelato shops.

4) Hotel Lincoln – My personal favourite. Head to this bar/restaurant on Sundays or Mondays for bar food at AUD$12  that usually costs a lot more, perhaps try their restaurant menu which really takes fine dining to a whole new level, or be served at the bar with exquisite cocktails (only if you’re really friendly with the bartenders or they are not too busy…shhh…they are not supposed to do it normally, but if they do they do it really well) by bartenders who aces in my book.

5) Carlton Gardens – Beautiful park that houses the Royal Exhibition Building and the Melbourne Museum.

I believe that I have made this into a far longer post than what I expected it to be and my excuse for it is that Melbourne has a lot more to offer than what many travel guides may suggest. As such, the next post would be a continuation of my exploration of Melbourne, so stay tuned for that!

Drop a comment if you have any or if you just want to rant at anything.

Afterall, my cyberspace is your cyperspace.

Other sites that you might want to check out:

Visit Melbourne 

That’s Melbourne

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