My arrival in November 2010 took in a process of detainment that many experienced in Ellis Island in the past and many non-white arrivee's still experience today before finally setting foot on Australian soil. My 36 hours in Kuala Lumpur International Airport, however, was completely of my own doing and not of the authorities. I had spent the day scratching my ass, waiting to head to the airport, completely unaware that my flight was 1 hour earlier than i'd thought. Clown ! Missed it by ten minutes (I did eventually cope on) and spent the next day and a half like that Iranian sham who spent 17 years in Charles De Gaulle airport (although he didn't have The Sopranos to help him through it).
I left Melbourne with so many positive memories and a life richer for having lived there. It was fuckin class. Leaving came quickly, the decision was more about timing as long as I still had the freedom to decide. I did. I was off. Thank you and g'luck !
I will miss the place, I had great people there that I shared the three years with. Top notch. That's the hard part. It was the first place I'd moved to that I had people already there - Keefe, Brads, Wonger, Rowan, Spanos and Trev (three hours away up in the hills). The first two legged it after a few weeks but the others were a major help, ready made networks whose friends became my friends. That makes the lot of a dirty immigrant all the easier and I didn't really experience the tough settling in period, at least not a prolonged one.
Its a really stimulating city, an easy one in which to exist. The contrast between life in Gertrude St of Fitzroy and that which awaits me in Zambia couldn't be starker! A largely white, secular, liberal area where stresses revolved around which cafe to breakfast in and which to take coffee in (to do both in the same place would be an unthinkable waste). But with that, the cushy living, comes a lack, of what I'm not sure but the grittiness and friction that comes in other less 'liveable' places brings also stimulation and interest. Not that it lacks character but a monoculture of 'creatives' and 'progressives' detracts from an area having a 'soul' so to speak.
|My pad in Fitzroy|
Melbourne gave me a lot. Super friends, work was great, and I'd a helluva lot of fun. In hindsight it worked out wonderfully, Canada may also have. I left while the going was good but I was comfortable that the timing was right. My gut agreed and my gut has been good to me over the years.
Leaving was a bit of a rush but I probably managed it better than I expected. Working up until the friday before my before my monday departure put me under all sorts of pressure to carry out all the things that needed doing but it got done. A quality weekend to wrap it up was had, centred around a tremendous friday eve at Lilly Blacks, a typical laneway city centre watering hole that is a speciality that Melbourne does oh so well. Having to work around the different groups required a bit of effort but it was so great to see all those I'd spent the previous three years with and a wonderful send-off to boot that continued into the not so early hours of the morning, gettting down in Boney.
Melbourne, I tip my hat to you, its been immense.