So, the flight is long. Really long. You try to sleep on the plane, chat with strangers, eat whatever you can find in the airport, and pretend to read your huge book. Then you get to that dream-like space where you’re so tired you’re just wandering around the airport until your next flight, purely running on fuel.
In this unreal state, I kept imagining myself landing in Melbourne, groggily enduring the cab ride to the hotel and with the last of my strength, crawling into bed never to wake again.
When I got off the plane and through the huge customs line, I grabbed my bags and rolled out into the arrivals area. I thought I would be grumpy, exhausted, just ready to get out of there. But much to my surprise, I was just happy. Beaming, in fact. The energy in the air was so fresh and warm, people were hugging and pushing babies and drinking expensive airport coffee.
The driver who was arranged to pick me up was about an hour late, but I was ok! I was just so happy to be here. All my anxieties and tears about moving again seemed to suddenly disappear. I just had this reassuring feeling that everything was going to be great here.
Of course, because I needed to beat the jetlag (19 hours from Vancouver, Canada!) I forced myself to stay away from the incredibly tempting hotel bed.
I stayed in CBD (Central Business District) for my first week in Melbourne and just explored on foot every day. My first day, jetlagged and dreamy, I explored for hours. Discovering the most amazing street art and graffiti, hidden shops and café’s, friendly people and live music on the streets.
Melbourne is alive. There is always something going on, no matter what you’re looking for. Incredible food, coffee, music, art, kids events and more. I have found the people here to be so kind and welcoming, inviting me to sit with their friends, strangers making me feel comfortable in my new home.
I knew from my first day here that I wanted to stay. At least for a little while, or maybe a bit of a longer while... I guess we’ll see!