Tag Archives: Melbourne

RICHARD SAY: “Holiday should not be hard work”.

The Merricks-Red Hill trail. Where nothing much happens, fortunately.

The Merricks-Red Hill trail. Nothing to write home about, fortunately.

Trust Confucius to put it in a nutshell: ‘Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life.’

That’s all very well for him to say. Chinese labourers swarming round him, slaving themselves towards an early grave, while he sat under a shady tree thinking up a few quotes. I bet he had days he couldn’t even be bothered being pithy and original. And he fell back on the same old lazy start to every sentence: ‘Confucius say…’

By Mr Confucius’ reasoning, most of a writer’s life is a holiday, and so it must appear to those who do jobs that actually need to be done. In vain do I grumble to friends about producers breathing gently down my neck while deadlines loom (or ‘whoosh by’, to quote Douglas Adams). There’s little sympathy for a writer from people whose work actually matters.

But there’s a flip side to my relaxing chosen career; in recent years most of my holidays have been taken for purposes of writing about them, either for money or in a pathetic attempt to attract blog hits. In other words, they have been work. But not this time. Continue reading

6 Comments

Filed under Travel

FREE BOOKS AT MELBOURNE BUS STOPS

I love the idea of these pop-up libraries at tram and bus stops in Melbourne.

It took me (and others) a little while to realise that the books were real. And free.

Well done, bookworld.com.au – advertising that people actually enjoy!

POST SCRIPT: Thanks to my correspondent Ian (see comments below) for directing me to Madison Wisconsin’s Little Free Library system. I recommend checking out their website and video.

We need more initiatives like this.

12 Comments

Filed under Travel-Australia, Writing

MERRICKS, VICTORIA – walking on the mild side

A car may come along, but it probably won't.

A car may come along, but it probably won’t.

Like most right-thinking people, we ate and drank more than was absolutely necessary over Christmas. Fortunately we did it in an area with ideal places to walk off the damage and the guilt.

I’m not talking serious hiking here, just gentle morning strolls on beach, country lanes or rail trails. Continue reading

11 Comments

Filed under travel photography, Travel-Australia

MORNINGTON MORNING – a new year’s dawn

Merricks Dawn 1

Happy New Year, people!

Internet and mobile phone coverage has been limited in our corner of the world, even though the Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, Australia, is just an hour’s drive out of Melbourne.

Thank you for your patience while I’ve been on blogging holidays. I don’t know whether I should be encouraged or disappointed to return to cyberspace and discover that the number of visits to this site was about the same during my absence as when I was working hard to find good stories and post regularly.

The Peninsula is an Australian gem, well known to Melbournians and less well known to tourists. That’s their loss and our gain. I’ll have more to say about it soon.

For now, here are a few shots from my morning walk. I was very lucky with the light – there was just enough mist hanging around the trees to catch the sun’s first rays.

Dawn 3

Dawn 4

dAWN 5

Dawn 6

Dawn 7

Dawn 8

Dawn 2

It was an excellent start to my year. I wish everyone many mornings like this during 2013.

25 Comments

Filed under travel photography, Travel-Australia

MELBOURNE FOR MISERS – where to go for the free stuff

A free science lecture on the big screen at Federation Square. It was about the likelihood of Earth being destroyed by an asteroid, but nobody seemed unduly concerned.


I’m a notorious skinflint traveller. If there’s a bus, I don’t take cabs; if there’s a 2-star hotel, I’ll look to see what the one star one offers; if there’s something going cheap, I’ll look for something that’s free. I know that there are more important things to spend money on – like coffee, food and alcohol.

And of all cities, my home town Melbourne is in my mind supposed to be free. In the good old days I could eat at Mum’s and she’d do my washing for nothing.

I hadn’t spent a day or a cent there for years, and there were a lot of new developments to catch up on. The Melbourne Museum, new facilities at the mighty MCG, the Ian Potter Centre and Docklands have all been installed since last I was in town. My mission was to see them for nothing, or next to nothing. Continue reading

10 Comments

Filed under Budget travel, Travel-Australia

SUIT UP AND RIDE – Cadel’s hot lap on a Melbourne Bike Share bike

'Yes, I'll definitely be switching to a Melbourne Bike Share bike for next year's Tour.'

Thanks to the surge of interest in my last post on my adventure on the Melbourne Bike Share system, here’s a little postscript…

Aussie cycling legends Cadel Evans (2011 Tour de France winner, for those who may have been on Mars and missed it) and Matthew Goss joined a great promotional event staged last week to raise money for youth mental health and promote the use of Melbourne’s city bikes.

Participants in Suit up and Ride are invited to dress in corporate attire and race Melbourne Bike Share bikes around the cycle-friendly Docklands.

You can watch Cadel’s ride on this YouTube clip.

'I'll get BMC to add a carbon fibre seat post, then we'll be fine.'

Thanks to Richard Monfries for bringing this to my attention, and Cadel may have to look out for me in next year’s event.

1 Comment

Filed under Cycling