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The Nostalgia of Royal Parade

November 9, 2011

Royal Parade is indeed special and royal, unlike any other typical streets in Melbourne. It runs for 3 kilometres between Grattan Street to Park Street, the street where I live now. It always feels so royally good to walk through this fine boulevard to my university and be immersed with its outstanding tree-lined beauty and cultural landscape. It has fully developed and dedicated multi-runaways for different traffic types: adventurous city-dwellers on tramways, law-abiding drivers along car routes, daring cyclists on bike lanes and wandering day-dreamers (like me) on footpaths. There are four extremely gorgeous plantations with 400 English elms (introduced since 1913!) that make me suffocated with natural spells and send me to the Wonderland. Yes, this is more than a street. It’s the Parade of Nostalgia.




Okay, Royal Parade does offer more than its pretty face. A deeper look into the past will explain why it is of historical and social significance to Melbourne. First, believe it or not, this street was traditionally known as “the road to Sydney” from the mid-19th century (I thought it was a joke, but it was true). For these nostalgic reasons, it is not a surprise that the state of Victoria has proudly awarded the Heritage Status to Royal Parade. This also must a great relief to many happy veterans out there who must have associated this boulevard with their happy childhood memories (just so you know, as of 2011, Australia is the second best place on earth to live, just behind Norway, and life expectancy is also second in place, behind Japan).

Speaking of childhood, Royal Parade also takes me back to my boy self, to my usual one-kilometer bike ride from Kampung Binjal to Sekolah Kebangsaan Kangkong, to my sweet biking buddies, to my carefree days struggling through dusty, red, unpaved road to education. There were of course no beautiful trees like these, no modern transportations, no civilized pedestrian paths, no Melbourne. There were only happy souls of my family members and friends as we made our ways to school riding our old rattling bicycles. The “Royal Parade” of Kampung Binjal has always been there inside me, specially marked with “Heritage Status”, protecting me from the blinding nature of adulthood, connecting me to more opportunities and freedom in a bigger world.

Alright alright. I might not be old enough to be too nostalgic, but I don’t want to wait until I retire to appreciate the weak spots of my own “Norwegian Wood”. Nostalgia is there for a better reason than melancholia or depression. It’s there to keep you moving forward. I want to be an idol of nostalgia, telling old stories and creating new ones. I want to be like many Aussie veterans who have created great histories and are happily living with their fond memories of Royal Parade.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. November 9, 2011 11:16 pm


    Che Mie, apo kaba? Moga-moga sihat selalu.


  2. Anonymous permalink
    November 10, 2011 10:39 am

    I think this is the zone of university life not to be compared. Very good to see you enjoying Melbourne so much.


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