Skip to content

10 Insights from Life in Melbourne

July 12, 2010

I remember all important dates in my life. And today last year, I set foot in Melbourne for the first time. Here are 10 insights from my first-year life in Melbourne.



1. It’s an amusement park.


Exploring the little corners in Melbourne has been my favorite pastime. Going to places has always filled up my senses with excitement and exhilaration. I find things amusing everywhere, even at the most boring place like a train station, or at the deadliest place like an old cemetery. To be able to see, sniff, hear and touch buildings or foods or books or flowers makes me dizzy with discoveries and adventures. Just like a naughty boy playing at an amusement park.



2. It’s a private island.


I live alone in a self-contained apartment at one of the most expensive buildings in Melbourne. That comes with the great advantage of staying away from unnecessary affairs with my “poor” fellow country men. Yes, I’m blessed with a few friends. The number is not as impressive as the artificial one in Facebook, but I’m comfortable with the thoughts of having a few good souls in mind. Life is so rich and simple. Just like a filthy rich son living on a private island.



3. It’s a five-star hotel.


My difficult PhD work comes with a great bonus – flexible hours and carefree life. Weekends and weekdays don’t make any difference since everyday is just like a Sunday for me. While many people are bogged down with strict office hours, I can choose to wake up late, stay home for the rest of the day, go shopping on Mondays, party on Tuesdays, and expect to be paid at the end of the month. It’s been a luxurious life. Just like a smart Tan Sri staying at a five-star hotel.



4. It’s a World Cup.


I love experimenting Aussie cultures. It’s refreshing to learn the meaning of Australia Day, to see the proud men walking on Anzac Day, to look for Easter eggs with Mark’s family members, or to cheer together with the loud audience at the MCG stadium watching Aussie footy. I enjoy my life here as much as the Melburnians do. Life is a big celebration and full of colorful flavours from all around the world. Just like a wild spectator at a World Cup.



5. It’s a thorny rose.


I hate when people complain about the weather in Melbourne. I think everyone should just live and shut up. Enjoy the fresh spring and the hot summer. Yes, winter is so cold and terrible, but what more can you ask from God when you live in one of the most liveable cities in the world? To be frank, I love all the seasons here, especially autumn. While the weather is always unexpected, life has been so romantic. Just like a loving mother admiring a thorny rose.



6. It’s a Great Wall of China.


When I first heard that PhD stands for Permanent Head Damage, I laughed. But it’s hard to laugh then. My studies have been going through a bumpy ride. Just when things look good, they could fall back into pieces. When things move in great speed, accidents could happen. I would never know what lies around the corner. I am struggling for risky tasks and building an impossible legacy. Just like a tired slave building another Great Wall of China.



7. It’s a music box.


The pictures of my family keep knocking into my conscience and tricking me with blurry childhood memories. The images are haunting especially after recurring dreams at night. I dream of my father building a new house. I dream of my late Ma asking me to get up in the morning. Then I would feel the terrible longings for the past. I would hear all kinds of familiar sounds and disturbing music coming from noisy streets in Melbourne. Just like a sad lover listening to a music box.



8. It’s a long dark tunnel.


It’s difficult pretending not to feel lost when in fact I’m lost and in need for direction. It’s tough playing tough when you are not that tough. That’s when I feel like I belong to no one. Like I belong to nothing. I am neither here nor there. Living on a foreign land demands guts and determination. Sometimes I feel like I’m standing in the middle of opposite places, trying to find some light at the end. Just like a lost child finding his way through a long dark tunnel.



9. It’s a good coffee.


I don’t know what’s got into my head, but I just love rambling almost everyday in Facebook and talk about my Budu tales in Melbourne. It’s strange that I have been documenting every single detail as if I’m going to forget about them soon. There are just so many things that inspire me to write. I guess I’m writing to my future self, reminding how good (or bad) life has been. Writing has never been so therapeutic and addictive. Just like an old man sipping a good coffee.



10. It’s a blue sky.


I always wake up in the morning feeling blessed for being granted another day to cherish the Melbourne air. Then I start to see things differently again, telling myself that I’m down under and time is running out. So I should grab every opportunity with passion. I might not be at the place of my dream, but to be able to live one of my childhood dreams is in itself a dream come true. Indeed, I’m standing high now. Just like a white angel flying on a blue sky.


Don’t worry, I’m still the old me, always looking forward to the next insight from my so-called life in Melbourne.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. ikpunye permalink
    July 12, 2010 11:26 am

    Para 9

    Got a good quote dari status teman di FB:

    “Orang boleh pandai setinggi langit tapi selama ia tidak menulis ia akan hilang di dalam masyarakat dan dari sejarah” – Pramoedya Ananta Toer

    Just keep on writing. Paling tidak, you still exist in the community of your so called artificial friends in FB or here. 🙂


  2. July 12, 2010 12:03 pm

    Phew! Thank God am not one of your FB friends…hehehehe…that’s because my Mama won’t let me. One year is still early days, mate. Wait till you’ve been here 10 years. Then you’ll start whingeing about the weather, the tax, the public transport etc etc etc. Enjoy it while it lasts. har har har *evil laughs*


    • July 12, 2010 12:20 pm

      Yes, thank God you are not one of those nasty commentators in FB (or maybe you already are hehe).

      I wonder what it would be like 10 years from now. I hope it is still as good *looking forward to ten years living in Melbourne*


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: