I got to Melbourne a day before the rest of my family. I spent the day wandering around, eating Harajuku crepes and shopping. I freaking love those crepes. The first time I was in China, in SiChuan, we’d get driven into the city from our boarding school on the weekend. Me and Giorgio, one of the teachers. We would go to a Japanese department store whose name escapes me but had a logo of a dove, and I’d get a banana chocolate crepe from the foodcourt in the basement. It was fantastic. That’s what those crepes are. Melbourne Central, if anyone’s interested.
I also sat in Melbourne Central foodcourt looking down on the street and watched a man (a boy, when did I get old?) eat his entire lunch out of his girlfriend’s bosom. Piece by piece. Then in the evening, I caught the tram out to Bek’s house, met her goggeh and kitteh and Hugo (all of whom were very charming), and saw her redecorating which was really very impressive.
The next day my cousin Tess flew in. I love Tess, she’s the best. Except not to live with. But then, I have control issues. Anyway, I walked down from Vic Hall where I stayed that one night (very nice, except that you can’t turn the air con off in your room, only adjust the temperature, so I wake up all snotty and gross) to Uni House where we are staying with the rest of the family.
Tess! Now she’s on the internets!
There had already been some to and fro about the booking (they lost it, found it, moved rooms, forgot how many people we wanted) and I was to book in for everyone since they were getting in late in the evening. We were told that I had to book in in the morning, which I thought was odd, but whatever. When I got there, the lady was really rude to me, told me I couldn’t book in because I wasn’t the person who had booked the room originally, despite this all being pre arranged, spoke to me with a general tone of telling off a naughty child, and then suddenly changed her mind and said I could book in at 2pm. I agreed, stashed my suitcase, and settled in to wait for Tess to join me.
While I was waiting an Indian looking man walked in and started to enquire about lodgings as a student. The woman behind the counter was equally as rude to him. The sticking point mainly seemed to be that he was living somewhere without paying rent, and Uni House would need rent reciepts. This was told to him in a tone of great condescention, like you would address a whiney 5 year old who is asking for the tenth time if we are there yet.
He wasn’t paying rent, he said, because the house he was staying at was owned by the owner of the firm. Or that’s what I heard, anyway. ‘Firm?’ she said. ‘I don’t understant that word.’
‘FIRM. F. A. R. M.’ he replied.
‘Oh, Faym’ (nasal Aussie twang)
‘Yes. I am sorry for my accent, it is a little bit French. Do YOU speak French?’
I thought this was an excellent put down, but she didn’t even blink. ‘Oh no, you don’t have an accent. You just said it wrong.’
I winced and hid behind my book and just after he flounced out in a well done Gallic huff, Tess rocked up and we went for breakfast and then a very pleasant afternoon at the vic markets.
I love my family, but they do fuss so and it was nice to spend some relaxing time with one of the non-fussers.
Initial rudeness aside, Uni Hall was lovely and had a great view of Flinders St Station, which I am completely fascinated with at the best of times.
On Thursday I lay in bed and finished my book (the latest Kerry Greenwood, and very nice it was too, even if it did mirror my own life a little much) while watching three men in pink shirts have an hours long meeting in that window with the newspapers accross the top. They looked very serious and their ties were excellent but I felt that I was the winner in that situation, because I wasn’t wearing pants.
I also watched the commuters. It is nice to watch other people toil while you are free and idle. Poor commuters!