Saturday, June 03, 2006

Big city day (part 2)

(If you're starting here- don't. Start at the previous post. I ran out of room. Or something.)

The next tour was called "The Cosmopolitan". This tour takes you through the inner workings of the CBD.

The two highlights of the tour are A) Collins street, another posh street, except this is posh in the sense that you can go to a Prada shop. (I'm not sure I've ever seen a Prada shop. The dresses were lovely, by the way.) and B) Chinatown. Strangely very close to each other.

OK, so I'm trekking down Collins Street, and the tour pamphlet actually says "check out the view from the Sofitel restrooms on the 35th floor." So I do:

The things to recognize here are the Botanical Gardens on the right side of the river and the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on the left of the high-rise. The MCG is the home to not only cricket, but footy. Australian Rules Football. Someone told me that they invented footy because they needed something to do with the cricket grounds in the off-season. Well, they've succeeded. It is definitely more than a game here, it's like a religion. Every weekend you see the crowds descend upon either the MCG or the Telstra Dome decked out in hats, mittens, scarves, and jackets, all bearing the name of their home team. It's like a "Where's Waldo" book, only they're all dressed as Waldo.

Next, I made a turn, walked past Parliament, and then turned into Chinatown. It's your basic Chinatown.

One of the things they rave about here is Yum Cha. I haven't tried it yet (plans fell through) but from what I understand, it's basically Dim Sum. It's a very big deal.

One of these things is not like the other!

I hope that you can see this. Another of the random art projects in town and this alley is lined with zen-Buddhist sayings on street signs. The artist has a Greek name though. Hmm.

As I make my way back to Federation Square, I realize that I have not eaten lunch! I call Gen and we meet up at the Queen Vic Market.

Lunch was good, an overpriced sandwich at an outdoor cafe, and I make my way home for some couch time.

Later that night, Lorenzo calls and we're off to meet friends in Fitzroy, the artsy/punk neighborhood. We have dinner with Julie and Peter and Fee at Joe's Garage, where we all get burgers. Then we are off to Black Cat, a bar with bad lighting and a terrible DJ. It has lots of couches though, so at least it was comfy. We close down the Black Cat (after one drink- no marathon drinking in this group!) and move over to Bar Open. A Fitzroy "institution", also with couches. The top floor has a jazz band playing, but we head to the garden in the back so we can hear ourselves talking. As we move back, one guy is sitting alone looking drunkenly up at the sky. Turns out it's Alex, ex-Golderite who just left this week. Tuesday he begins his new job as a tour guide. In Russia. Talk about a 180! Since I have been working in the field all this time, I don't know Alex very well. I can tell you though, that Alex has the most unique laugh ever. He does this heh. heh. heh. suck-in-as-much-air-as-you-can-through-the-back-of-your-throat. heh. heh. and when he gets started he can't stop. I find this hilarious and on more than one occasion we become this laugh loop where I'm laughing at him laughing at him laughing. It makes my stomach hurt. Here are the boys telling a very animated story:

Shortly after, the band upstairs stops playing and two of Alex's friends come out. John and Fava. "Fava?" "Farmer." "Oh, Farmer!. I thought it was strange that you were nicknamed after a bean." "What?" "I'm American." "Ah."

Yep. Time for a taxi home.


Sarah said...

3 things (i think)
1. What is a Prada shop? a name brand?
2. What's yum cha? food? or a drink.
3. again. Whats dim sum?

shows how much i get out i guess

Steph said...

1. Very expensive designer brand
2. food.
3. chinese appetizer sized food that they bring to your table.