Shopping and restaurants! The former has held no appeal for me and the latter fills my mind with dread. Ah! The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. The moment I try anything that I have not tried before, my digestive system rebels! No matter what the plumbing accessories manufacturers say, it is difficult for me to think time well-spent if all I see is a wash-basin – appropriately adorned with what used to be in my stomach – on a trip to a new place. Nor do I think I would be a welcome companion if my stomach acts like a high-yield gas well with outlets at both ends. Thankfully,
is supposed to have a restaurant for every palate and, thus, I can relax and
look forward to actually seeing other things than my bathroom fittings.
A veritable feast of art, culture and architecture awaits the visitor to
the Melbourne Museum Johnston collection, the
National Gallery of Victoria and the Australian centre of contemporary art are
just a few of them. One can imagine an art and culture lover to lose himself in
the creative expressions on display. It is a shade more difficult for me to
imagine myself as that art and culture lover! With practically no eye for
visual creativity, all that I get when I visit museums is a crick in the neck.
Then, when I see someone else’s photographs and descriptions of the same place,
I go, “Ah! You mean it is that same place I visited?” It is thus that,
whenever, I visit museums I feel like I am preparing for an examination – from
someone or the other who is bound to ask me, “You went there and did not see
THAT?” in contemptuous tones.
If I give the impression that the moment someone tells me, “It is your time to visit Melbourne, NOW”, I make a list of all the things that I cannot or will not do in
I really cannot blame you. The idea, however, was to get that out of the way
before I get to talk of all the things that I would do there.
One of the most attractive options for me is that Hot Air Balloon ride at dawn. I have always loved watching a city from above while landing at a destination and, from a Hot Air Balloon, I can take it all in more leisurely and with a wider angle of vision than is provided by those oh-so-small aircraft windows. Not to mention the novelty of the ride, itself, as well as the vision of a dawn sky. (What do you mean that I am so full of hot air that the balloon ride is superfluous? I don’t get that at all!). Of course, having seen the city in its entirety from the sky, I can dispense with city tourism and get down to what I like doing best!
Cruises! God! There are so many mouth-watering prospects for cruises in the place. I am particularly taken by the
cruise that promises you picturesque gardens and parklands. What can be better
than floating on water and feasting your eyes on picturesque greenery? The River Gardens South
Island fort cruise is another enthralling prospect promising
stunning seascapes, a trek and delving into underground passages. Mmm! A
delicious prospect! Further away, there is the option of the cruise. Yarra
The mention of
instantly evokes memories of fantastic beaches. What a plethora of beaches
there are to explore in Melbourne – each with its own unique beauty and
offerings. The spectacular sunsets of St. Kilda beach, the sensational Melbourne
skyline from ,
kite-surfing and beach volleyball at Middle park – the options seem endless!
Not to mention the possibility of trying my hand at snorkeling and
wind-surfing. The fact that my only idea of swimming is going straight down
would be a great help in snorkeling but for the fact that I do want to come up
alive as well. Anyway, one has to see what can be done when a man is unable to
imitate a fish – except in the stink! (What was that? My only idea of
beach-views is what I derived from watching Pamela Anderson in Baywatch?? I
will have you know that I was watching the beaches in Baywatch – not that I
claim to have studiously averted my eyes when Pam swam into my vision!) Brighton Beach
If that were not a surfeit of options, there is parasailing, rock-climbing, abseiling and sky-diving too. Ah! Well! Even if I am refused the option to take up deep sea diving because I do not know swimming, I cannot be refused the option to sky dive because I do not know flying!! The only limit on what I can do is what my thin wallet will allow me to do.
The prospects at
Melbourne seem so
endless that the only fear is that I shall spend the stay there in the dread of
hearing the words, ‘It is your time to leave Melbourne,