Day 56 – Melbourne, Australia

Winter is here. Today is the first official day of winter in Australia. When I arrived in Melbourne, the temperature has been anywhere between 8-12°C (about 47-53°F). Which means it was time to bust out the winter gear. Backpacking and winter are two opposites, but I came prepared! Knowing it would be winter in the Southern hemisphere during my time of travel, I packed a very light but warming Patagonia nano puff jacket and lots of layers. I traded my trucker hat for a beanie and my tank tops for a long sleeve thermal.

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So far it’s been pretty bearable. Once I start walking around, I actually have to take off layers to stay cool. Today I started at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, which offers two free exhibits dedicated to the history of cinema, television, and basically anything picture-related.

Anyone that knows me knows that I love movies, pretty much any movie. Except horror. But I found the entire exhibit to be very interesting and informative. There was even an area for video games and they had the original Nintendo on display with Mario that you could play. So I played through the first round for nostalgia’s sake. There was also an area that was showing the footage of the first moon landing in 1969. Very cool.

After my time at the ACMI, I hopped on the free city tram to Queen Victoria Market. I was a bit underwhelmed because once you’ve seen one farmer’s market, (Seattle, Philadelphia, etc.) you’ve pretty much seen them all. Well, it was actually pretty massive and I will probably go back to spend more time exploring the retail goods, but I was getting pretty hungry and could not find a decent place to eat so I left pretty quickly and headed towards the Paperback Bookshop, but stopped for a smoothie first.

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The bookshop was tiny and did not have what I was looking for so I headed to another store that I found at the Emporium. One of the nice things about solo traveling is that you don’t have to have a plan. On the way to the second bookstore, I stopped because I found a cinema and decided to watch Wonderwoman since today was the opening. Loved the movie, everything Gal Gadot is worth watching. After the movie, I had lunch/dinner at the nearby food court then went to Robinsons Bookshop to buy George R. R. Martin’s A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms. I first spotted this at the airport but held out because I thought I could find it cheaper in Melbourne. It wasn’t, but I got it anyway. It’s basically a prequel to the Game of Throne series, and I cannot wait to start reading it.

Tomorrow I am checking out of my hostel and heading South to do something that I had not originally planned on doing in Australia but have actually been wanting to do something very similar for quite some time. I’ll keep you posted!

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