Our first 10 days in Melbourne were spent in the backpacker central of St Kilda and yes guys surprise surprise the 1st day there was cold and wet:) So far every place we have been to in OZ its rained upon our arrival now i've heard of trying to make a place homely but this is seriously taking the piss. We went from 40 degrees to 14 degrees but i can say i'm glad that the weather got much better and that we will never forget the fantabulous time we had in melbourne and the great friends we have made!!!
Guess i'd better start from the beginning...........
We were fortunate enough to have a friend (Aidan) already clued up in Melbourne who organised us cheap accomodation in the Oslo Hotel backpackers. There we met the legendary Kiwi Grant and Aussie Jonathan who ran the place and looked after us! We instantly loved St Kilda with its cool bars and restaurants and we managed to spend far more than we imagined during our first week there. On the Saturday Aidan gave us a guided tour around the beautiful city and we ended up at a house party in Fitzroy with Disco Stu and Co, needless to say it was messy as always.
We found work easily and started our training on the Thursday for customer service roles @ computershare. We were based in Abbotsford and it must be the most relaxed call centre Paul's ever worked in. We met the coolest bunch of people there who were to become our mates for the duration of our stay. On the Sunday a bird pooed all over Lou's head on the beach in St Kilda which we took as a sign of luck and as it turned out it was!!!!
On Tuesday 18th October we decided to look for apartments on the net at work, seeing as it was quiet and by chance the lovely Allie who sat next to Paul overheard and sent us an email offering us a room in their luxurious Yarra riverside apartment!!! I wish i had the email to post here but when you get an email offering you a room for sooooo much less than a hostel with a gym, pool, spa etc etc in DOCKLANDS you clearly realise why the bird pooed all over my (lou's) head:)
We went round that night for drinks and it led to much debauchery, setting the scene for the next 5 weeks!!! We hit it off instantly and arranged to move in the next day, i think you'll agree from the photos that Allie and Anthony's place was simply gorgeous in every way and not exactly a backpacker lifestyle:)
On the 1st weekend we began with what was supposed to be innocent work drinks on the Friday and as the pics showed turned into much drunkeness and singing untill the bar shut! We had a party at ours on the Saturday which was supposed to be a pataunque (aka lawn bowles) party but as it rained it turned out to be a much drunken party with lots of brie and pimms - so very british of us hehehe:)
Needless to say it was a fabulous party (even with Lou requiring 4 attempts to clean off the projectile vomit all over the bathroom - no American names mentioned here) and went on until around 5am without any noise complaints which given the hard dance and metal music which we subjected the guys to we were very surprised. It was the perfect way to get to know everyone and Allie, Ant, Kea the Super Cat, Aids, Mikey, Penny, Will & Jules could not have made us feel more welcome:)
The following week we lost our jobs - boo hoo:) and began the search for more jobs - chorish!!! As a special treat on the Friday night Adrian took us to a football match, we saw the mighty Melbourne Victory versus Adelaide United and we got to stand and drink beer and join in with a few well known footie chants. (May I just add that I have taught nasty Chelski & Manc chants to as many Aussies as possible so the word is spreading and they all seemed to appreciate the taunts, esp the rent boy ones:). It was fun and amusing all at the same time and while the football was played at a truely slow pace it was great to go and reinforced just how much i miss my football team and going to games -even if we are having the worst season on record for ages!!!!! I personally think their in mourning because i'm in Australia:)
This was the way of all of our weekends and most week nights to be honest; the footie was followed afterwards by much drinking, this time in Richmond in a bar with a funky guitar player! On the Saturday night we went to see Tottenham v Arsenal and Chelski v Blackburn (it was looking so promising at 1-1) and Louise surprise surprise got bought drinks from fellow gooners and started a fight with a complete and utter toss pot (sorry Mum) of a Chelsea fan who had the cheek to insinuate that Louise didn't know much about football or care that much about Arsenal. As you can imagine the poor 18 year old boy got a lot more than he bargained for and i'm quite surprised we didn't get thrown out for the rucus she started with him!
On Melbourne cup day we went to Torquay with Aidan and played on 3 different surf beaches eating our gourmet coles picnic - hehehe. It was a great day and soooooooo hot, Paul had his first surfing lesson in the Atlantic Ocean (nice and warm -not) and managed to stand up first time round which i'm sure was aided by the temp of the water beneath him! I have to admit the time speant in the sea by me was a long walk and a quicj dip - it was below freezing for heavens sake!!!! On the weekend we went to Riva on St Kilda Marina for Penny's 30th Birthday and all the usual suspects attended. Stanford (our wicked Canadian friend hehehe) brought along his buddies Ed and Lucas (my the force be with you) who had spent from early on in the morning drinking at the last day of the races, needless to say their ability to stand up was challenged quite significantly. We lazed and munted aroung all day Sunday and watched scary movies, we really did feel at home again for the 1st time since we'd been away.
Oops, I did forgot to mention that we started our new Sales jobs in Port Melbourne this week and while the hours were a tad naff 12 - 8 it meant Lou could swim every day in the cool pool which overlooked the highway and i could sleep in - yippee:)