It’s 3am and I’m in Melbourne chatting with some drunk Irishmen.
So that’s happening.
Really though, this jet lag stuff has been the most fabulous thing in the world. I went to a busy noodle shop called Bar China at about 1:30am, and now I’ve landed at a Burger Jack’s… in downtown Melbourne… at bar close. So far I’ve spoken with different groups of people about the names of American cities, gun politics, environmental extremism, gay marriage and gaming. I should mention that I haven’t had to start any of these conversations. Partying Melburnians who visit this Hungry Jack’s seem to be a friendly, chatty lot, and all I have to do to generate a conversation is to respond to a “hello” in my American accent, aaaaaand we’re off! Also, PAX-Australia apparently just ended and this gentleman – visiting from Perth for the convention – was kind enough to let me take a photo of him in his awesome t-shirt for the blog:
But let’s back up.
I woke up in Minneapolis on Friday morning, worked half a day, came home and gave Prada and Taz goodbye snuggles, and had a last meal in Minneapolis for a month with Aaron. I arrived at MSP airport around 2:30pm and met my coworker, departed for LAX at 5:20pm, landed in Lax at 7:20pm (local time), departed for Sydney at 10:15pm, flew 15 hours and arrived in Sydney at 7am SUNDAY (local time), navigated customs and immigration, hopped on another plane for Melbourne, took a 20-minute taxi and ended up checking into our hotel in the CBD (central business district, i.e, downtown) at around noon on Sunday.
Neither of us had slept much on the plane, and so we had been up for over 24 hours at this point. My coworker and I knew that we couldn’t go to sleep until later in the evening, and we put up a pretty good fight. After getting settled in our rooms and taking gloriously glorious hot showers, we threw on our walking shoes and explored the city around our hotel. We wandered down Exhibition Street to Federation Square, turned around and meandered through Russell Street and Chinatown. I picked up some Australian currency (their money is so much prettier than USD!), stopped into a Telstra for a SIM card, and ducked into a liquor store (a “bottle shop” according to the concierge) for wine. Mmmm, wine.
After all of this heroic delaying of sleep, we were dismayed to learned that it was only 4:30pm. Too tired to carry on conversation, we decided to retire to our rooms and order room service, which I had intended to do immediately after I sat down on the bed to remove my shoes and oh this bed is nice and cushy I wonder if the pillows are going to be any good…
…and it’s 1am.
Here are some photos from my travels so far:
Eastern Australian coastline, seen shortly after departing from Sydney.
A curvy, winding lake that looks like it should be a family crest from Game of Thrones, seen somewhere between Sydney and Melbourne.
Rural area outside of Melbourne, speckled with shade from the clouds.
Melbourne skyline from the rooftop of my hotel.
Little Bourke Street – Melbourne’s Chinatown. Very busy with lots of restaurants, groceries and Traditional Chinese Medicine shops.