Sabtu, 02 Agustus 2014

Frozen in Melbourne, VIC, Australia

July 31st, 2014

First day in Mel-b, in a flat at Tennyson Street, Malvern East. When it's 12.15 PM, the degree was 17 celcius, super windy, partly cloudy, 70% probably rainy, but the sun shine here's so lovely beyond the cold atmosphere. Btw on my way from airport to Tennyson, I was staring at the wall, or pole of highway, or whatever of the public busy street/highway, which was covered by so many pamflets/uninterested posters. But for me that was so interesting because those posters informed about indie/underground concerts, mostly hard core and electronic dance. These are what I'm looking for but too bad I can't come to any of them due to respecting my housemates.
In the afternoon we went to chadstone (a mall) by bus from monash caufield campus. Before using melbourne public transportation you have to buy myki and add some money in that card as the way you pay the public transportation you'll use. In chadstone we went to food court and finally I can grab my taco! That taco is super tasty. Next we went to coles (like wall mart in US) because my friends needed to shop for their monthly necessity, then we went to Gloria Jean's Coffee. I need something warm but I didn't want to suffer myself with caffeine because haven't sleep for 33 hours, hence I chose White chocolate and the taste isn't so special even too sweet in the end. But the drink called cookies and cream is very tasty! I also bought melbourne's postcards
Welcome to Melbourne!

August the 1st, 2014

Woken up by 0 degree celcius temperature outside. Didn't do anything till 1.30 PM, the first "activity" I do was going to my first class. It was reasearch methodology. That was a big class in auditorium, the venue was very comfortable and it's very different between the student in my country and the student here. Here, they're very individual (doesn't mean selfish or other bad things it just like they walk without 'companies'). After praying magrib we (two of my housemates and I) went to the city by train started from caulfield station to the melbourne central station. I crossred the streets and saw state library in the crowd of city lights, the city's so alive. No ipod nor camera but my eyes was recording and the music playing in my head loud. The alley with "so europe" front doors, the shop windows that shows interesting items, and the bars-cafes-other hangout places. Our destination was to have dinner in QV, a semi indoor area that provides apparel stores, footwear&accessories stores, cafes, restaurants & bars, quick bites, life style shops, and entertainments. There we were waiting for two acquaintances. Two boys from Indonesia too and they're really nice. After looking for a restaurant (fyi this was friday night so it's very crowded and hard to find a place to have dinner) we finally sat in Pappa rich, a malaysian restaurant. I ordered crispy noodle, I called tami in my Country. The portion was too massive but don't be afraid to ask the waiter to take away if you can't eat your dish all.
after the rain: wet road at Tennyson St.

August 2nd 2014

It was rain at dawn, the very beginning of the day. It was Saturday and I think there’s no significant difference between the weekend and the weekday in Melbourne Central. The place is pretty crowded. My first destination was State Library. Oh, God for sake! I swore I could spend hours in that ‘magical’ place. It such a quick tour because my ‘guide’ don’t really like that place. I should have visited that place alone for self-pleasure. So what is Victoria National State Library? Yes, indeed it’s a library, a huge one, but they’re also has some galleries. That’s what makes me attracted. There are many beautiful paints on canvases; the views, the histories, the stories, the folks, the figures, and the mysteries. The building’s architecture, both exterior and interior, is remarkable. It’s felt like you’re in an ancient era but the touch of modern era is either so obvious. After the super quick visit to National State Library, we went to Melbourne Central shopping precinct and we were hanging around while waiting for the other friends. In the food court I bought a slice of pizza. It has mushroom, olives, tomato, and cheese. Wonderful taste and wonderful size but I will never stop eating for pizza. Anyway we went to Hoyts to watch Lucy, a movie stars Scar-Johansson. Well, the cinema here has one time entrance and you have to find the studio by yourself and open the studio’s door by yourself and find the seat by yourself. It’s very independent. The important point here is you can enter all the studios and watch the entire movie you want as long as you’re not caught. After watching in the ‘lux’ cinema we went to (again) Asia’s restaurant. This time is Korean restaurant named Oriental Spoon. This restaurant was full by Asian people (I think Korean). We ordered 4 dishes for six people. What a big dinner, isn’t it? I don’t really remember the menu’s name but two of them named beef bulgogi, and japchae. The side dishes are sprout and kimchi. That was the first experience of eating Korean food. To be honest I don’t really like Korean food. “Why do we always go to Asian restaurant?” I asked to a friend. “What do you want to eat then?” He replied. “Something that is so Australia?” I answered. “Okay, let’s find out tomorrow!” He smiled to me.

August 3rd, 2014

The awesome day was started when I jogged in Central park of Malvern East, the way I think that I was in a dream. I ran, through the path surrounded by the cold I took a deep breath and open both of my eyes then I realize this is not a dream. This is too real as I saw the morning sun, the trees with no leaves, the wood benches, the dogs, and the blue sky. This park is the best place to find a relaxation and for breakfast I bought chicken tandouri baguette sandwich in coles.
                                                *                   *                   *
Forget about Block Arcade and Fitzroy park. The whether is too bright for the beach. So welcome to saint Kilda beach! I always want to visit Florida Beaches and this beach, st. Kilda, has fulfilled my dream. The palm trees, the seaside restaurant, the road, the white sand, the green grass, the seagulls, the wood path, and even the amusement park! This one has Luna Park which was first opened in 1912 but unfortunately I didn't get in that historical amusement park. Instead of that after beachwalking, we had a lunner (lunch dinner) at Beachcomber cafe and resto which has beautiful beach view. All of us ordered fish and chips. Again, for me it's a monster portion, consists of four slice of chopped fried fish (it's a little fishy so there's a slice of lemon there), french fries which is so much bigger size then in Indonesia, and salad which is consists of red lettuce and some unfamiliar frsh vegie I've never consumed before. Anyway it's a delicious dish remembering fish and chips is one of my favourites. So, I felt like I'm in heaven. I ate good food, I saw beautiful things around me, and I was with good people. And don't ask me about the sunset. It's so wonderfull. I walk in the bridge to the dock where I could star the gigantic buildings with a sunset view close to the see and the ships.
Back to the city for the last stop. QV again and we had dessert in Max Brenner, a cosy chocolate cafe. I ordered Banana praline crepes with vanila ice cream. And its awesome! It seemed like I was starving in reality about an hour ago I ate 90% of that fish and chips giant portion. Magically I ate all the crepes and ice cream in my plate! What I can learn today is sometimes you need to trust local people and you won't be regret!
Melbourne's Luna Park
Favorite restaurant: Beachcomber
Sunset in st. Kilda beach

August 4th, 2014

Welcome to the real campus life! At 10 o'clock a friend and I went to Monash Clayton campus by his car. I decided to join his political science class. I did really enjoy the lesson and my heart was there. I know that I should study this subject! I was in campus almost a whole day. I was lounging on the campus grass, having brunch in campus' canteen, even praying in campus religion center.
# Culinary spot alert:
 For dinner, this is the best among the day: we went to Carnegie and stopped at Grill'd. That was the coziest place to hang out, affordable, and amazing burger! I ordered simply burger with traditional buns and the taste..  don't ask me because anybody mightbe able to see the answer through my face when I bit that. No need knife and fork because it's too yummy and preciuos. First bite you'll feel the most tender and juicy meat between two delicious bread, also the composition of the vegie are not concealing the original main taste of the dish star; the meat. I believe it's a home made beef. Again it's very juicy and yummy, I've never tasted this kind of burger in my life before and I won't forget this. I also tasted the french fries, as big as they are in Beachcomber but this one is tastier because they added some basic seasoning and herbs all you have to do is deep them in the given home made mayonaise and... Voila!
Grill'd simply burger

August 5th, 2014

Central Park, 3:15 PM
"Every step of your path is an adventure. By walking alone in strange land to find out something new is an adventure. And here I am. Staring at beautiful houses in every single of my footsteps. I found peaces beyond my steps. It's okay for the mishap today. Here I can clear my mind, ensuring my decision for my future. It's a perfect moment to sketching but I don't know the way back to my friend's home by the way. So, I must leave now before it rains." That's what I wrote in a piece of paper after I finish my international finance in Clayton campus. Because of I ain't interest in my friend's next class, I decide to go back to Malvern East alone and before reaching the bus station I finally bought latte in Campos. It is said in a novel I've read before that Campos Coffee is one of world best coffees. That latte tasted okay but the mishap that I mentioned above is when I entered the university bus with my fake ID the driver ejected me. First, I shocked, I though that I was catched up however I figured out that no drink nor food allowed inside the bust. So, I perforce threw my 3 dollar latte away. Damn. Then I could enter the bus with my fake ID. Sat alone with John Mayer songs in my iPod in front of a cute innocent (perhaps) local guy while it was so cloudy and a little rainny outside. Oh, dear I only need my latte back at that moment would be one of the best moment in my life isn't it? A happiness is only a simple thing. Trifling even.
Because happiness is simple, let me tell you what else was that: ice cream. Even in winter, I don't literally give a damn because good tasted ice cream is a hapiness. So, five of us went to Carlton where you can find many standar until elitte restaurants in the street side just like I used to see in the movie or travel magazine but we're not stop at the lux italian restaurant with the umbrella and torch in their outdoor area, but we had dinner in Ying Thai, a very ethic and lovely one. The restaurant is designed like an old restaurant in Thailand and the restaurant door, that green wooden ordinary oldist door, reminds me with my great grandma house door in Madiun and that door was the original door since 1940ish. Very antique and pretty. After entering the restaurant I also feel homey, so asian and natural. We ordered a lot of dish but one, my favorite all the time from all, is chopped fried chicken wrapped in pandan leaves. Sorry I don't know how to describe it but that's the best Thai's food I've ever tasted more then red duck curry or tom yam. The chicken color's golden brown, crispy, tender, oh damn I was speechless, oh one more! I ate it with warm rice, what a perfect dinner isn't it! Fool me because I didn't remember to take some pictures. Next, this is what I'm talking about; ice cream! My friend intended to bring me to durian ice cream or something but it closed so we walk a little and found this; Helados Jauja, where all of my friends never taste either. So, four of us (one other was flu) ordered four different ice creams; cookies & cream, cocoa 80%, aussie pavlova, and banana nutella. This time I didn't forget to take a picture and then post it to my instagram account (@winonaamanda) and my caption: "Aussie Pavlova: passion fruits, mango, choco chips, caramel, etc." Wonderful! One of the best ice creams I've ever tasted.
"every step of your path is an adventure"

August 6th, 2014

Today's schedule was, common tourist destination; Shrine of Remembrance. It's a place decicated for their heroes. Before we me and a friend go there, we stopped in Menya, a Japanesse small restaurant to have lunch. I ordered one of their best but again I don't remember the food name. It's delicious enough and I ate them all, a huge portion again, but now I can handle those huge portion. Muahahahahaha. So, we went to Fitzroy with tram to the route for st Kilda and stopped right in front of Shrine of Remembrance. Not much thing I could find there, only an empty hall similar like pyramid, I mean the building, and in the outside you can see a small monument and I saw java sea written there among other place's names. Close to the monument there's a circle short hedge and in the middle inside there's a real fire. But the fire didn't make us warm in that cold winter day. A funny but pathetic thing happened in our dinner at Coconut House, a chinese small restaurant. My friend ensured me to order food which she believes no pork there. She said that's the best and I did order that cuisine to take away where two of my friends had dinner there. The food was given but I still not sure because all of the items, mostly, consists of pork. So, I asked the waitress. My dish was noodle with sprinkled white flesh (which I though it suppose to chicken), and a huge chopped of chicken sticks. "Is this pork?" I asked. "Yes," damnit. "Which one?" Then she said, "the white one," "okay thankyou," both of my friends are a little shock. Fyi, I'm a moslem so I must not consume pork. One of my friends is moslem too. She surprised because she already mixed the noodle, "oh, I don't give a damn." She was upset and keep eating the dish. Meanwhile, I tried to separate the pork from my noodle with a little laughter and I stop my laugh, starting to say, "oh, I'm so sorry God."
Shrine of Remembrance

August 7th, 2014

In a breaktime of Communication and Creativity class at 10 am in the morning I went to Campos again. This time I don't wanna buy the cute coffee such as latte or cappucino. I want the real coffee the best they have! So, that time I chose Long Black. I heard that's one of the best product. I sipped it, bitter? Absolutely. But the following sip made me falling in love. It's wonderfull. The accid and bitterness of robust coffee creates the artistic taste in my tongue. Seriously, yes Long Black of Campos Coffee is the best. I didn't regret! The Long Black coffee was also my sole friend in Australia's Black History Class where none of my friends have that interesting class. After that class we have to take the university bus again to take us to Caulfield campus and I made sure I have thrown my coffee away.
In the afternoon after classes we went to James Cook cottage the only one Melbourne's destination I know and I really want to get there. However, google is google, lonely planet is lonely planet, picture is picture, nothing deserves to be blamed. James Cook's cottage is not like what I imagined. The house is very small, tiny even and I have to pay to enter the house. In the contrass, there're too many visitors that makes the cottage much smaller. But the good thing was we found conservatory garden close to the cottage where beautiful flowers planted inside. They're very beautiful with blue, white, pink, and semi purple color. It's nice to spent the time seeing the beauty of the plant.
We went to Kokoro Ramen for dinner. In Kokoro there were seven friends and acquaintances, very crowded dinner but it was fun surrounded by Indonesian people in a strange land. There are a lot of choices for ramen but there's no choice for moslem because there is only one kind of ramen which is clean from pork.
After having dinner we went to Medibank Icehouse in Pearl River Road to do our last activity on that day; skating. That's my first experience and I'm pretty bad in balancing. I hate ice skating. I prefer to watch the hockey excercise in that venue when my friends were skating. This sport, hockey, is not available in my home town, even it's pretty rare. So, no more ice skating unless a prince charming just like Alex Pettyfer or Gaspard Ulliel came to me and ask me to ice skate with his arms around me...
Campos' Long Black; world's best coffee
James Cook's Cottage at Fitzroy Park
the Conservatory, Melbourne, Victoria
before hockey excercise start

August 8th, 2014

The whole day I spent with listening to the local radio stations; 91.5 Smooth Fm, 101.1 Mix Fm, and 89.9 Light Fm. I really enjoyed the day to do nothing but writing the story of my journey (and how today I really regret whereas I should go out and get lost!) and chatted with my friend via Line while Not a Bad Thing was sung by Justin Timberlake through the radio of my smartphone.
Time flied fast, maybe because my physic needed a little rest. That evening I did really expect something local, very local. The night life of the local people. However, my friend was not sure about that at all. So, instead of go to Alumbra, after having dinner with cream-rice-chicken-something at Asian restaurant we went to Crown Casino and Entertainment Complex. I was wearing pastel dress, black leather jacket, and a black skullcap, no wonder how disappoint I was. We walked to Flinders train station and stopped in front of it to wait for the tram that could bring us, three of us, to Crown. Approaching that casino, I saw the gleam of those gigantic lux buildings along the river. The night was pretty cold that was why they have some fake big torches along aside of the river. The torches would flush the flame in setted time. Nothing special inside the Casiono, there're not much Melbourne's local people there. For me, I prefered watching the white doves on the grass aside the river and watching the lux gigantic building opposite the river. I wondered how's up to the people inside those buildings. My sense as a fiction writer waken up and I began to sorted the plot.
Our dinner, but I didn't note the name

the sparkling Southbank: inspiration?

August 9th, 2014

That was the second weekend of my trip in Melboure, the time to explore the suburban area. That day two of my friends introduced me to beautiful South Yarra. If st. Kilda could make me feel like in Florida, this area reminded me to New York City, like in the movie, even a little. This area looked so exclusive with branded store and hang-out-able cafe or restaurant along the street. Very beautiful. See, look what I found in wikipedia; "the main shopping region of South Yarra runs along Toorak Road and Chapel Street. Trade along these two arteries are focused on trendy and upscale shopping, restaurants, nightclubs and cafe culture. The area of South Yarra centred along Commercial Road is one of Melbourne's gay villages." That explained me well why I glanced some pretty cute dudes there. Gays. Well, we took the train from Caulfield train station to South Yarra train station before mid-day. Then we walked to Toorak Road from the train station and I did really like walking in South Yarra! The winter's sunshine was so glazy whereas the citizens were walking to enjoy their weekend. Beautiful modern tiny shops with classic buildings stand tough, how they perfectly impressed the stranger like me. Not far from the station, we passed South Yarra Square right in our right side. It's kind of hang out place, with green umbrellas as the canopy of those tables. And there's a mini fountain in front of the main building.
I kept stroll with my girls and they said we'd have lunch in Japanese restaurant. I sighed thought that I wouldn't like asian food anymore. After arriving in Toorak rd, I saw many interesting small but prestigious restaurants. The restaurants for chocolate specalist, pasta specialist, and many more. Very desireable. Then finally we entered Kanpai, that Japanese restaurant. The place's okay, not so-Japan and comfortable enough. I like it. "They have the best Teppanyaki, you must order it!" One of my friends whispered to me. Finally, I ordered mixed teppanyaki and octopus sushi, with a lack even none of information about what Teppanyaki is. Whatever I didn't care. I didn't expect so much. My sushi came first. Yes, you're right. It's raw. But I didn't mind, they must accompanied by red ginger and wasabi so I won't die, besides octopus in a raw dish would be better then raw fish. I detest raw fish. I ate my sushi, all of them, in a second. Only two pieces. The taste was not really special. Then, the main star came, the mix teppanyaki. It was a medium rounded plate with stuffs covered by creamy sauce. I pinned something in the plate with the fork. It was prawn. And... That's the best Japanese food I've ever eaten. The mixed teppanyaki consisted of seafood things, chicken, beef, mushroom, and some chopped vegetables served with yummy garlic sauce. They're sauted in a big flat mostly square 'teppan' (iron plate) by the chef. It's my first teppanyaki and it's a very good first impression.
After lunch, we went for window-shopping in a few hours to see some girly clothes and try them on, winter boots, jeans, and others. I saw the group of people with their Harley Davidson's passed the road, and I saw many puppies too. But the most unforgetable 'puppies' was, when we went back to South Yarra train station we indeed would pass trough South Yarra Square cafe again and there, we saw a very huge but cute and innocent dogs waiting for their master in barber shop. They didn't bark nor grunt. With some laugh after seeing those innocent dogs we're heading to Melbourne central again to go to our friend's apartment in QV. I bought Subway, that famous sandwich franchise for dinner. Anyway, the day before I found a free mini tabloid in the train and I just found that; Melbourne's local indie band names Apes. Fyi, the Tramper Trap is Melbourne indie band, also the lovable folk indie band; the Paper Kites is Melbourne's. So, I typed in my cell phone's note the name then I forgot to find out but that evening when I checked my note, I remember to find out about Apes. I found them in youtube and I love that rock and roll band. I found out about the launching album that was written on the tabloid. I found the venue and checked it from my google map. By walking from QV it only takes 18 minutes. But what a pity the tickets rationally sold out. So, instead of watching indie concert (that's one of 10 best things I love to do) I went to Hoyt again to watch Guardian of the Galaxy with my friends. I was aslept there for several logic reasons.
Raw octopus
A good day to window-shop
 The sidewalk is on the left of them, the right side is South Yarra Square cafe with green umbrellas on the tables, and the little fountain is in front of them.
 Subway's sandwich, first time eat. I chose turkey meat, all the vegetables, and barbecue for the sauce. Not bad, but too much vegie.
Guardian of the Galaxy (?)

August 10th, 2014

That day was one of the best weekends in my life ever. For me in travelling, the most important thing is the process not the destination. How you really enjoy the time during the trip, how you love every single little things on the way to the destination. If you reached and satisfy the destination, for me it's just a bonus. This morning four of us (girls only) got in the white VW golf within the guitar, nachos, potato chips, pods, cookies, sheets, candies, sun-glasses, mother (the energy drink), monopoly cards, and high spirit. We were obviously ready for our picnic today at Victoria's greatest icon (where I used to see in the Calendar and post cards); the Great Ocean Road, the Twelve Apostles. It "is a collection of limestone stacks off the shore of the Port Campbell National Park," (wikipedia). The great rocks on the shore would remind us to the beach setting of Narnia: the Prince Caspian.
Well, From Malvern East to Geelong we drove through the high way, we didn't need to pay. The road's very beautiful with the boards that show the direction. After sighting the cargo's harbor below the highway brigde, I saw beautiful green scenery. As I mixed the corn chips with salsa sauce to make a perfect nachos the clear sky above us suddenly turned to a dark gray and swifty rain drops liked shits on hell (I'm sorry). But that time the rain could ruin plan, magically that rain only drops in fews meters of the highway. What a strange phenomena, isn't it?
Drive drive and drive along the lonely road, we're entering kind of farm area with medium tress and green grass as the horizon where I could see the sheeps and the cows and the calves feeding the grass. For the first time I screamed to myself; "dude, I'm in Australia!" See! What I saw outside the car's window is something that I won't see in my country. That was so Australia.
On a highway: on the way to Geelong
After reaching the town names Geelong, we stopped in a rest area (if you would like to call it, but for me it's like a small colony consists of beautiful shops) to ask the information center about the way to twelve apostles and how long it will take. Nevertheless, we didn't find the information center so we went back to the car to continue our journey. The first stop is a beach we didn't reach, we only watching the sea in a wood porch where I could see two people surfing there in the other hand the temperature in the land might reach 0!
See those people!

1st the Great Ocean beach to stop

Such a cold cold day lads
After watching that we continued to find out any restaurant to have brunch, and the GPS said we have to turn around. On our way to the unknown restaurant we stopped to try the boat that we have to paddle. We're having so much fun there with the boat on the lake, a very clean lake. After that we kept following the GPS which finally led us to the rest area we've stopped before, damn nice. So, we decide to look around before choosing the restaurant. We strolled to that beautiful outdoor place, seeing shops along the alley with their huge window, and eye catching walls. Fyi, behind this area is Anglesea Recreation Camp. In the middle of our chill strolling, we stopped to visit a vintage look shop named Frangipanis. They sell a lot of cute things; crafts, shaped soap, dolls, vintage room decoration, baby's clothes and accessories, also flowers. It's a joy to look around in that shop. In addition the old woman, the only one staff there-- or maybe she's the owner too, is really hospitable. She asked about where are we from and finally we can ask someone about the route to twelve apostles but we forgot to ask about the duration to reach it. I bought Luckies' scratch map from Frangipanis, a map for me that I must scratch by travelling the world. After wandering we decided to have brunch at SeaEyes. It's a lovely restaurant, we chose the indoor venue because the chair in the outdoor space is still wet. Four of us ordered fish and chips. The look of the dish is prettier than in Beachcomber but for the taste I prefer to Beachcomber. However, this one is still so yummy. Such foodgasm!
SeaEyes, Anglesea

Have a nice brunch fellas! (1)
Another magic happens when we saw the white lighthouse in the edge of the shore. We parked the car next to the outdoor playground and walked to the beach against the wind. We saw a beautiful rainbow across the blue sky off to the cold blue sea. Then we walked approaching the lighthouse even after considering the time we decided to not get in the light house. I saw beautiful birdies with a highlight of pinky-red feather around their neck, green grass, strange bushes, the beautiful down path to pace, and a heavenly scenery when we walked from the lighthouse area to that small playground area where we parked the car.

the Lighthouse

the playground (1)

the Playground (2)

Made peace to my own free soul

2nd beach to stop
The heavenly scenery won't stop after we drove through the board written: Welcome to the Great Ocean Road. I couldn't stop amusing by watched the scenery around me just like what I used to see on movies, in addition they dark grey cloud decorated the unreachable roof I called open sky made it as I call a super perfect moment to remember. We drove along and it almost dark. We discussed. The result is we won't go to the Twelve Apostles. On Monday one of them had a class to attend. Gosh, I really want to go there because that's the most important icon of Victoria, where you usually can see the picture in the home calendar. After deciding, I accompanied my friend to a public lavatory, we walked across a muddy road. During the waiting, I discovered the place around and I figured out that area is a 'camping ground' for the caravans. I've never seen the real caravan in Indonesia moreover the complex of the caravans. "What are you looking at?" My friend walk approaching me. "See," I pointed to the caravans beyond the tree behind the public lavatory. "Wow, looks fun." She said before we went back to the car. We arrived in the t-junction. The right would bring us back to the town, the other one leads to the Twelve Apostles. I wonder I was with my high school fellas or with my current college travelling gang in this trip hence we'd rather to chose the left turn challenging all the risk and stay there till the sun rise of course with the guitar and maybe an impossible fire woodpile, but indeed we chose the right one. It had already dark on the road with the wood pines along both side of the road, with no other vehicles we could see. One of my friend was very anxious about this 'so-thriller-movie' situation, hence I grab the acoustic guitar and sing them some cheerful songs to entertain them and make them calm; Coldplay, Maroon 5, Imagine Dragon, etc. After all we (sadly) leave the wood and reached a strange town. The houses here remained me to the house in 'The Texas Chainsaw' movie; cold, pale, gloomy and quiet. But finally, we found a supermarket there and we stopped for 2 purposes; asking anyone where were we and to have pee. We've got the first purpose; that creepy small town names Colac. Unfortunately, we didn't find the toilet in that supermarket. The grocery girl who told us what town it is either explained that there's a local theater close to it where we can find the public toilet in the theater. So, we drove again and we arrived in Copacc,that local theater. Again, it was so quiet. It actually is a very beautiful place, warm and artistic. But no one's there unless us made it yet creepy. There's a place where they put the mannequin displaying traditional outfit inside a room with glass side in the front, not far from that spot I saw a booklet of Copacc and I picked one.

Copacc: Colac's local theater
Pages of Copacc Booklet
After arriving at Tennyson St., I read that booklet and really wishing I could watch some of those theater performances; the Girls in Grey, 1984; Shake & Stir, Bunk Puppets, the Magic Hour, Bach by Candlelight, the Harbinger, and so on. I also found a website in that booklet; showing the profile of that town. Instead of a creepy town for me, after seeing the page, it's a perfect town to stay considering art and nature are always be my favorite. I never regret to stop for pee at a random strange place.

August 11th, 2014

I know I shouldn't do it but I did it. I took a rest 24 hours at home. I packed my luggage, plotting my documents, counting the dollars left-the dollars to be spent tomorrow, because tomorrow I have to be 'all out', hence I preparing everything including my unstable physic that day. In the morning I went to Cole's with my friend to shop the ingredients I intended to cook for dinner. Finally, I have my me time again even if inside the house. Once again I went out but I didn't walk far from home. I just watching the sky and the houses around. I started to loving the weather here, the winter in Melbourne. That time I thought: "it's not literally freezing anymore. I'm not frozen here." This town has a lot of interesting spots, so many spots that I haven't discovered. I don't know what's on the edge if I walked straight through the boulevard there, maybe there's another beautiful park, a perfect place to read and contemplate? Maybe there's a cemetery, a Gothic one like in Bram Stoker's Dracula? Who knows? I had lack of time here, two weeks is not enough. I even hadn't had a dine in Olive's, a pizza restaurant on the corner of Tennyson street. Then, in the evening I started to prepare the dinner; I cooked spaghetti with chicken carbonara sauce, a lovely one that I really love. There's an accident eventually, my friend forgot to pull the top part of the stove to absorb the fume, so the fire alarm rang. My friend tried to shut it down, she tried to reach the ceiling but it's too damn high. With a struggling effort when she almost reached the button it shutted down by itself. At last, three of us were having dinner within watching Devious Maids together. I peeked to the bedroom and saw my lovely blue (semi turquoise) medium luggage had already packed.

August 12th, 2014

In a chill morning I walked to Caulfield campus with a friend. My last walk in Melbourne, perhaps. It was a little rain, but ain't bother us as well. I took some photos in the park of that campus then we went to the store of Caulfield campus. I did a quick search around that store, considering to buy something for me to remember this town. Monash jumpsuit? Too not affordable. Graduate Teddy bear? Too cute for me. Monash notebook?; Do I really need that? What it will be filled on? Then my heart went on a shelf of sale classic novel. That was so me. Classic novel, half price. Nesbit? Stoker? Austen? I chose Robert Louis Stevenson's Kidnapped. I recently read Stevenson's Jekyll and Hyde, and instantly fell in love with that masterpiece. I thought I need to read another artwork of this guy in addition this novel has a beautiful simple cover; maroon textile (entirely plain) with a small single ship pattern on the middle top of it. This tiny novel is a pocket novel so I could bring it everywhere I'd travel to remember that 'hey I bought that in Melbourne!' even Stevenson is a British. Well, across to campus, we arrived in the train station.
Before having a brunch my friend was going to guide me to shop some souvenir, one of the activities that I hate. It doesn't mean that I don't love my friends/families in Indonesia,it doesn't mean that I don't care about them either. But, shopping much for little things might makes me stressed. If I had a choice I'd rather pay someone to buy me the souvenir so I could spend my last minutes in Melbourne to explore its block Arcade or other cultural district. So I went to Queen Victoria Market where I, for the first time, tried the blue cheese. I don't like it. Thank you. I ate several bites of churros to forget how terrible the taste of the blue cheese... Okay, that wasn't that bad but still for me the taste is strange. In that market also I figured out that there were a lot of Indonesian people who were the sellers, they do it to survive in this country remembering Australian dollar rate always far fly above Indonesia's rupiah. I bought some stuffs from an Indonesian guy stand; a middle age man from central Java. I bought some chocolates for my family and a new diary for myself. I stopped writing diary last new year. It's more than 8 months I'd been waiting to find a right book to write in. Uscha got my attention. The stand that was served by a beautiful nice dutch lady showed several classic books with leather cover and recycled paper. It seemed like I was dragged to the classic era. I need to think twice, even more, before deciding to buy that book. For me, my new stunning diary. My expensive diary.
See? Queen Victoria Market
 Walk on in the Melbourne's Central Business District, 'the city' they called, we went passed the small path to find this awesome brunch restaurant. The entrance of this place was like an old abandoned warehouse, but it's cool for me. When I entered that place. "Damn! This is what I've been looking for!" With an industrial concept this restaurant, named Krimper, is my favorite place based on its interior and cosiness. Well, I'd tell you about the dish. Both me and my friend ordered hot chocolate for the drink to a cute waiter later I found out he's a French. I starred at the menu for a quite long time. They didn't have many choices. My friend had already ordered baked oven duck something with a mashed potato. So I did a random choice, but I had made sure no pork this time. I picked a menu which name was so cool until I can't remember it when I write here. One word I might sure there's 'Mediterranean' world in that menu. See? How cool it was! Mediterranean a beautiful sea between south Europe and north Africa where Malta was on that sea, one of the countries I really have to visit. I ordered it and gave my best smile to that cute French guy. Later on the drinks came. I sipped that so-so hot chocolate in a warm conversation with my friend while my eyes wandering the place. Krimper used wood for their interior; tables, some ceilings, and accessories. The main door was like in an old garage; made of wood and huge. All of a sudden I didn't give a damn about it as the cute French guy served the dish on the table. "Enjoy, ladies!" What! The. Heck. No. I didn't enjoy it! It's a raw fish! Yuck! I detest raw fish. I had eaten raw sushi long time ago and I hated it. I always hate it. I was so panic. My good friend offered me to exchange the dish but I did know she really wanted the duck. What a super nice friend. Hence, I stood up and went to the front to the cashier/order table. A Chinese waitress with a glasses came over me. The French waiter stared at us seemed so curious but he didn't come approach due to his business. "Well, I don't know that the menu I ordered is a raw salmon. I can't eat raw things. Can you or anybody cook it for me?" I asked. She was sorry for my inconvenient, "I don't know, but give a second I will asked the chef." She smiled to me nicely. "We can do it for you, but the taste of the dish will be totally different after grilled..." I didn't care. "Ya, it's okay." I said. I didn't have to wait for a long time until the waitress gave back my plate nicely and politely. She's true. It was too freaking salty. I knew how because I do love cooking so I didn't so surprise. However, I didn't want to be starve so I ate them all. "Need a help?" All of a sudden that French waiter came over us and offering a help. He's too nice, I could see it. Everybody loves him. This small restaurant was visited by various people; old, executive, student, women, men, anyone. "Water, please." Said my friend. "I wanted to know him," I said to my friend. That was my very very last day in Melbourne, I didn't need to be a shy little girl. I need to be someone else who is braver, a high risk taker, crazier, and a little b*tchier (but still not out of control). Before we pay the bill I went to the lavatory, which was so clean and smelled good. I put on my lipstick and wear a maroon knitted scarf in front of the mirror. I went back to my friend and brought all my stuffs to the cashier. The cashier supposed to be a girl with a ponytail blonde hair, but this time that French waiter was on her position as a cashier. That was my chance to talk. And yes. We talked. I knew his name and where he's from, asked him with a French language and to memorize: took a picture together. Well, I don't like him as you thought if you thinking about one night stand or a short love relationshit. I ain't kind of that woman. I did that only to memorize and being a little crazy, who didn't care about anyone else thought. Because I was the tourist who wanted to remember her trip to Melbourne.
"Raw egg, sprout, pomegranate, raw salmon, white cheese, some strange veggies." Have a nice brunch fellas! (2)
I continued my shopping to the mall near Victoria State Library where we used to watch movie. There I bought a Melbourne Victory shawl for a friend who will pay for it and visited a famous soap store from England, Lush. There isn't Lush in Indonesia but later I found out that they kind of supply for the Body Shop. I bought a salt scrub for my mom, later I used it for myself (lol). That's it and we met the guys in front of Victoria State Library, a little bit late, that's why my friend was mad at them. The three guys are from marketing major, I got one more new friend from Semarang. We got in the tram heading to University of Melbourne. This University is the oldest in Victoria. Uni-Melbourne reminded me to the ancient universities in Europe I've been dreaming of. The buildings were beautiful and the students were more multi-culture than in Monash. I was in love with Uni-Melbourne. I saw a lecture brought his student to have the class outside. On the grass, below the bright blue sky. The ancient university surrounded by modern teaching methodology and I suspected, sophisticated research. We left Uni-Melbourne to prepare for dinner. Me and my host-mate would go to our friend apartment in QV where the three guys left. We stopped at Boost stand to bought juice. I didn't remember what I ordered. It was sour as I liked. We arrived in the apartment room and wait there until the sun literally set. I left my shopping bags there and went for dinner with the girls. In the restaurant the boys were already there. That was my last dinner in Victoria during this trip and I did enjoy it. My friends said two weeks are too short, I couldn't agree enough. I hadn't explore the art district, I hadn't watched the local theatrical show, et cetera. Our last dinner was closed by a photo session.
a very nice group of Indonesia's student in Melbourne
Five of us walked back to QV apartment where the three others went to the subway train station. There were no much goodbye because I believe we'd be keep in touch by the social medias. During our stroller I smelt something good yet familiar because I had crossed that ways for more than a dozen times. "Harajuku! Let's try! This is your last day!" My friend pulled me to that crepes counter. I ordered chocolate crepes with almond topping. That was my last day and that was my lucky night. I got chopped strawberry bonus on my crepes. The lady forget that I ordered chocolate with almond, not chocolate with strawberry. So, I got three of them; crepes with chocolate, strawberry, and almond. Perfect! My last hours in Melbourne was spent with some horror stories in the apartment. The haunted building was not the QV apartment, he said, but the building in front of his room. It used to be the hospital or something like that. His former house-mate often had a nightmare. After the short horror story, he walked us to our friend's car. "Have a safe flight! It's very nice to meet you!" Said my new friend. He waved to three of us while the car was leaving the parking lot. I tried to not blinking during our way to Tennyson street. I wanted to remember every corner of this city at night; the calm traffic, gigantic buildings, yellow taxis, ancient public places, and the city lights. We arrived in Tennyson street far before midnight. After washing in the shower with a very hot water against my freezing skin, I laid in the queen bad with electric blanket on. I couldn't sleep. I found out that leaving a country that you've recently been excited and adapted was harder that fought against your excitement to go abroad-- traveling a new strange unexpected land. The unexpected became adventure and that adventure became accepted. It accepted so you needed to explore more.

August 13th, 2014

I worried about missing the flight until I couldn't sleep. It was about three in the morning I was asleep. I woke up at five. The plan departure at seven past something so I have to be there at least 6.30. Only two friends who accompanied me to the airport. We went to the airport with my friend's VW Golf car. I was surprised by the traffic on the road. The sky was obviously dark, it was about six in the morning. I supposed the people were going for work. I could see the golden horizon in the sky showing the sun was getting rise. We ran to the airport, knew the time was running out. I went checking alone for myself where my friends went to buy some breakfast for us. I sat on the airport bench waiting for my friends. They came and gave me a McD's sandwich. "No pork?" I asked. She laughed. "No of course." I hugged them and said thank you for a hundred times. I walked alone again to the gate. Well, goodbye Victoria's frozen air. Thank you for the priceless experience in Melbourne including the free classes in Monash. Maybe I'll see you again Australia!
The sole kangaroo I saw in Australia

During my trip in Melbourne, during the rain, when I was alone, John Mayer said to me these things, and I would say so to you:
"Scared of a world outside you should GO EXPLORE...
Pull all the shades and wander the great indoors.
 So go unlock the door
And find what you are here for
Leave the great indoors
Please leave the great indoors..."