Melbourne Trip ’13

I like to keep to traditions or rituals or habits. For example, before I start a blog entry I tend to make sure I have some kind of beverage ready, switch to headphones and then have music playing. Like before I take an exam I like to make sure I get to the exam venue at least 1 hour beforehand and have a sandwich or something light.

In this case I’m going to stick to the “BLTS” tradition of being the first to publish a blog entry about our group happenings.

So the four of us managed to scrap up a plan together and get away for the weekend to (not Sydney) Melbourne. For me, it’s been something I have wanted to do for awhile now.. a mixture of intent to see the Australian Open (tennis) someday and because last year in October the ACMI had a videogames exhibit.

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Arts Centre Melbourne – both days were sunny 🙂

For various reasons we couldn’t get the trip together until this year, that’s OK, I managed to selfishly squeeze in the Melbourne International Comedy Festival (at last! This one has been on my list for over 5 years).

Here we go – more photos than text because I know that no one actually reads what I type (I sometimes cry myself to sleep).

We landed in Melbourne around 10:30 I think and got to the hotel + checked in around 11:15ish.. then headed out because I refused to let them go to bed.

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Flinders St Station

One side of it anyway. Comparatively to Sydney, their CBD stations seem bigger than Sydney’s ones.. probably because they’re not underground. So across the station was one of main chains:

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Lord of the Fries – Flinders St

The look on E’s face was priceless when I told her that this place was vegan. I think it went from shock to anger.. she probably would have appreciated if I told her that BEFORE she ordered her “chicken nuggets”………. they were good at least.. to me..

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Onion Rings + Chips

Onion rings were really good, reminded me of the ones I had in America.. the ones I miss so much.. We wandered around a bit more and stumbled into Chinatown which to me still seems like 1 narrow street in Melbourne. Then again, Sydney isn’t too different too.

I think by the time we found this dessert place it was like 12AM.

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Dessert Story – 195 Little Bourke St

S was a bit new to the Taiwan / Hong Kong style desserts so it would have been an interesting experience for her I hope. I loved that S and E took awhile to figure out the other side was just a very clean mirror. Teehee.

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Grass Jelly + Coconut

To you know.. lower the “fire” or whatever. We went back to the hotel after that and crashed. I think it was about 1AM when we finally went to bed.. we had a 6:30AM start the next day. In hindsight I probably should have just let them go to bed when we checked in.. ah well, sorry guyz.

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Brother Baba Budan – 359 Little Bourke St

This place only serves coffee and they’re open early. Dubbed by some as “Possibly the best coffee in Melbroune.” – big call considering how much they love their coffee there. This one looks like a Flat White but don’t be fooled! It’s actually a “Magic” (yep); double ristretto with milk.

Next we made our way to North Melbourne via tram (can I just say that it’s real cool that public transport is $3.50 for the whole day for everything, on a weekend) – this reminded me of San Francisco a bit.

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I think this was Elizabeth St or something.. yeah no idea..

Breakfast was at Auction Rooms in North Melbourne. The staff were very friendly and nice – our waitress thanked us for bringing the weather with us.

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Auction Rooms – 107 Errol St (North Melb)

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Waiting for our food..

This time it was a flat white – yeah 2 coffees so far for the Saturday.

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“Opening Bid” – Poached Eggs + Bacon

Their bacon was really well done. I don’t know what kind it was or how they cooked it but.. was just great. I usually like my bacon crispy but this really made up for it.

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I think S’s dish was the winner though.

I’ll leave it up to her to describe it, I’m sure she can remember it better than I do. Fish. <><.

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Queen Victoria Markets – 513 Elizabeth St

Next we walked (I think?) back down to Queen Victoria Markets as this was on S’s must-do. Erm.. this was kind of in the middle of the 2 market sections, was a cool busker + randoms dancing together (whoa, photos went out of order.. need to think harder now).

For lunch we went to.. wait for it..

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Victoria University – Footscray Park Campus

Yep, that’s right. We took the metro (gasp) and a bus (gasp!!) all the way to this quiet (weekend) university.. why? Because everyone seemed to be gathered at the library, not to study but for:

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Reading Room – 88 Ballarat Rd (Building P, Vic Uni)

Yeah I know the photo doesn’t really do it justice. I just found that the Britannicas on the shelves funny.. this is where they’ve gone.

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Southern Fried Chicken + “Coleslaw” (crunchy) salad.

I’m totally taking the winner for this one, the chicken was so awesome. Like a less greasy version of KFC haha.

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E’s Pork Belly + Japanese Cold Drip Coffee.

She pretty much executed her cardinal rule to the extreme by getting pork belly for breakfast AND lunch. The small “pill” bottle was what they used to keep the “Japanese Cold Drip” coffee which apparently takes like 6~8 hours. Quite good.

Headed back after that – same way we came. Oh, oh! All together now..

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Dumb ways to die ~ dumb ways to die ~~

Yep, I just started up that song :D. OK so.. I think after we got back we made a stop at “Self Preservation” (8 Whiteman St) for another coffee stop – another flat white. Coffee count for Saturday at 3. No photos from me because I was too tired at this point haha.

We were all so tired by this point I think we all needed to nap a bit – so we did that when I quickly ran an errand for a mum.

After we all got up again – we headed towards Crown for dinner:

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River walk was it?

Dinner was at Baci – we probably should have waited a bit longer as they were only serving pizza. Actually I probably should have researched dinner better haha ><.

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Baci – Crown Casino

At least I enjoyed my pizza 😦 and iced mocha – we’ll count that as a .5, so that makes 3.5 cups on Sautrday haha.

After our quick dinner we went to scope out Hardware Lane / Street because we needed to have breakfast there the next day. But also because the show (The Caffeinator by Ben Lomas) was in Hardware Lane.

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Five Boroughs – 68 Hardware La

Loved the show, too bad it was only 50 minutes :(!! I’m definitely going to try come back to catch more shows.. this just was not enough haha.

Afterwards we headed back towards Flinders St because we needed to feed S’s churro / donut craving:

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Cone Heads – Flinders St

Erm.. I have no photos of the Churros place but it was right next door I swear.

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Freshly fried and with gravy + garlic mayo

Mmm that topped off a bloated day for sure! Went to sleep after that (well I watched The Wedding Singer hehehe).

Got up around 7:30AM to head towards Hardware Street for..

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Hardware Societe – 120 Hardware St

So glad that we got there pretty much as they opened because when we left the alley was pretty packed of people waiting.

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Baked Eggs !!

T had these pinwheel sausages which I thought were pretty fancy. Afterwards we headed towards Federation Square but then ended up crossing the river to wait for ACMI to open (10AM).

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Towards Art Centre Melbourne

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Best “Chicago”-like shot I could get.

So the girls shopped around the markets for a bit (didn’t even know they had that during weekends – maybe just Sundays?). Headed back towards Federation Square for ACMI – man I can’t believe it’s free haha.

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Screen Worlds – permanent exhibit 1.

They had a videogames section too! Kind of reminded me of the Museum of Moving Image in Queens, NY (gosh I miss America). We ended up spending like half an hour playing Quake LAN haha.

We then continued our journey towards the South Wharf (where DFO and the exhibition centre is) for lunch.

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Akachochin – 33 Dukes Walk (South Wharf)

E and S have all the photos so I’ll leave it to them – I was just busy enjoying the lovely Japanese food :). This meal was probably our most expensive meal, well worth it though. That chicken wing dumpling was quite something.

Around 2PM we headed back to Federation Square because they had a free stage show for the comedy festival, essentially to close our the festival. Good to get a few laughs in when we can! We then needed to fit in a quick dinner / afternoon tea.

Once again we found a cafe in a library – this time the city library.

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The Journal Cafe – 253 Flinders La

As you can see, I started getting a bit lazy towards the end of the trip haha. I had a Cuban Sandwich and a flat white (yes, coffee again haha) – which I thoroughly enjoyed. Reminds me.. I need to check out the place in Surry Hills that also has some deliciously looking Cuban Sandwiches..

Let’s get that organised, yeah?

Thanks L/T/S for the trip – was fun! Thanks for helping me finally cross off something that’s been collecting dust for 5+ years on my to-do list!

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