We’ve just visited our very first ‘seven-eleven’ convenience store. Seriously, would it kill the Aussies to build a Waitrose? They only stocked one type of Champagne. What’s so convenient about that?
In a promising team-effort, the three of us cooked our first Aussie breakfast and, despite having to queue for over an hour and a half to use the kitchen, the resulting fry-up totally put everyone else’s own-brand porridge to shame. It was even worth the fist-fight Rachel got into over the microwave. Unfortunately, with all the benches taken, we had to sit on the bean-bags and eat it practically from the floor.
“It’s ten in the morn, daahlings,” Bev drawled in her ‘posh’ voice. “That’s Champers o’clock in my book.”
She expertly popped the cork from a newly-purchased bottle of fizz, and filled some plastic beakers Rachel had found at the back of a cupboard.
“Shall we toast our toast?” I suggested, raising my fried-bread in one hand and my drink in the other.
“To Australia!” I cheered.
“Bottoms up!” toasted Bev.
“Up ya bum and no babies!” roared Rachel.
I’ve come to realise that this backpacking malarkey is the closest thing I’ll ever get to living the student lifestyle, and I am determined to make the most of it. Yes, skipping the Uni experience and going straight to work may have had some financial rewards, but I’ve always felt like I’ve missed out on a Rite Of Passage. The lack of rules and responsibilities. The new experiences. Threesomes. This trip is my chance to sleep in, drink booze with my breakfast, and generally do whatever the hell I like.
Although, the closest I can see myself ever getting to a threesome is if I use both hands.
Hey Drongos! Chuck us a shrimp on the barbie, etc.
I am sitting on the golden beaches of St. Kilda, feet buried in the sand and water lapping at my toes. Jealous? Don’t be. It’s bloody freezing and we’re the only ones here.
In fact, there seems to be quite a nasty storm whipping up. The girls insisted we spend their first day (awake) on the beach and nothing was going to stop them, certainly not a little thing like a hurricane. I’m assuming that they’re enjoying themselves, but with headphones wedged in and phones inches away from their faces it is hard to be sure. At the risk of sounding ancient, can you really enjoy your surroundings when you’re texting non-stop and listening to dubstep? Despite the near arctic conditions, they’re both showing signs of tanning up already, which is beyond annoying. How is that even possible? I’m still so white I border on blue.
Melbourne, I’ve discovered, is well-known for its highly unpredictable weather patterns. It’s even highlighted in one of the tourist brochures at reception; ‘Melbourne: Four Seasons In One Day’. Unfortunately, none of us had read that or any other brochure before we arrived here. Rain, wind, lightning, sun, even occasional snow, can all feature in your average Melbourne hour, so we’re having to pack sunscreen, umbrellas and snow-shoes just for a quick trip to the shops. It’s getting a little cumbersome.
Having spent most of the morning exploring the streets alone, I’ve learnt that this city is a big mixing-pot full of global waifs and strays like me. A Dulux colour-chart of skintones and ethnicities. I’m told Melbourne has the largest population of Greeks outside of Greece, and it’s positively crawling with Asians. And I mean that in a positive, non-racist way. Everyone is welcome. Even a pasty Brit like me.
Oops. Gotta go. My towel is blowing away!
Love Kev x
The beach is only a few stops away on the train, so this afternoon we headed there despite grey and stormy skies.
“There’s two things I don’t like about public transport,” Rachel muttered as we climbed on board and paid the equivalent of 20p. “The public, and the transport.”
After a brief stroll amongst the yachts and glamour of Port Phillip, we headed further around the coast to St Kilda, where we experienced a full-body exfoliation by sunbathing within a passing sandstorm. Or rather ‘sunbaking’, as Bev insists on calling it, as “there’s no actual bath involved”. Despite being incapable of getting a tan, I’d agreed to join them in order to build on the glimmer of self-confidence I received yesterday from my attempt in the park. This time, of course, it meant psyching myself up and whipping off my t-shirt in front of the only two people who know me on this half of the planet. They politely said nothing as my flesh was revealed, but I’m pretty sure I saw their eyes widen in horror. The shock at least helped Rachel dislodge a few things, as she came back from the toilets in a great mood proudly revealing she’d had her first Australian poo.
“It were like someone emptied out a bag of Revels!” she exclaimed happily.
Girls are so gross.
The whole topless thing was a lot more stressful today, in part because of the blast of wind that forced me to chase my towel down the beach, man-tits a-bouncing. Proper cringe. It’s made me determined to do anything I can to tone up and lose a bit of weight whilst I’m over here. Well, I say anything. If I can do it without eating healthy and working out, that would be handy, because that sounds exausting. The unfortunate jiggling put me in a bit of a grump, so when Bev asked me why all the photos on her phone were looking “well dark” I didn’t give her my usual tactful response and instead opted for, “because you’re looking at them through your fucking sunglasses, you moron!”
Bev sometimes requires a little patience and sometimes I don’t have any.
I take it back. Jet lag totally exists. Quickest. Pub crawl. Ever.
We’d headed into town with two fellow Friendly Backpackers that I’m calling ‘Cocaine Man’ and ‘Lesbian’. I’ve not asked their real names. Being a back-packer is kind of like being a kid again, in that you can chat to anyone about anything and things like names don’t really matter.
I’d been totally up for it an hour ago.
Fifty minutes ago, I was drowsy.
Forty minutes ago, I was comatose on the floor having toppled off my bar-stool and hit the ground without waking up.
Thirty minutes ago, I was emerging from my coma still connected to my chair via a string of drool, with an empty crisp packet stuck to my cheek.
Twenty minutes ago, in some semi-conscious daze, I found myself demonstrating the perfect method for pleasuring a man, using a bottle of Budweiser as a substitute penis. It’s not the kind of thing I do, but seeing as the photos are already all over Facebook I’m hoping ‘jet-lag’ will be a good enough excuse for those wondering why I’m deep-throating a beer on the internet.
I’m now in my bed, which means of course I’m both wide-awake and stone-cold sober. I’m proper gagging for a decent cuppa and a choccie hobnob, but neither appear to exist over here. Air-con wouldn’t go amiss either and I’ve an awful case of Clammybuttitis. Despite the chill of the beach this morning, tonight was far too hot for the sweater I’d worn to the pub, sweat-er being an appropriate word. No one likes a soggy pit-stain, especially me when it’s mine, and it’s mortifying if a burly Aussie catches you squatting under the hand-dryer in the loo with your top pulled over your head trying to dry them off.