Melbourne Expat Diary Blog Series: 11th Month

Melbourne Expat Diary blog series was inspired by the interest to read about the life happenings of other expat bloggers. I started writing my own version ever since I moved to Melbourne. I hope you enjoy reading the summary of the last 30days of my life, as a Melbourne expat, as much as I love writing it.

Last weekend was my 11th month living in Melbourne. One thing that struck me the most was that I no longer feel like a stranger in a new city. Everything has started to feel familiar, which was both good and bad. Good, because it meant that I have started to fit it and began to assimilate with the local culture. That part felt nice, like I belong to Melbourne and its society. At the same time, I hated that I stopped noticing Melbourne, that I stopped being awed by something or another on a daily basis. Simply put, along the ride, I stopped enjoying Melbourne.
It made me really sad when I realized that I have gone so far blindly rushing to the next appointments, tasks and routines. Going through a day’s motions without prioritizing on exploration and experience, which have been important values for me.
I poured my heart out to Liz about this first world dilemma in the train on the way back home. The train reached South Yarra and she offered to continue this emotional vomit session over drinks, which I quickly agreed to. We drank and ate Szechuan calamari. I blabbered, she listened and finally gave some interesting advices, which includes getting aura reading by a physic and how to take a shorter evening commute. It was one of the defining moment when I realized I might just have found another best friend.

Melbourne expat life highlights of the month

We hosted a pajama party over a weekend for my colleagues. Three of them came with identical Stitch onesies. We drank plum wine, played the Mafia board game, ordered pizza and trash talked office people. It was really fun. This definitely needs to be repeated regularly, even though I suck at playing board games.

On another weekend, I played laser tag at Melbourne Emporium together with Fafa’s friends. We had a great time killing a bunch of strangers we went to the battle with. For me, it might be the most fun way to exercise.

Valentine has been a night to remember. Although it didn’t go as well as I wished, but we still managed to have a dinner date to celebrate it. And during the dinner, I noticed that Fafa ordered my favorite dish and gave me a larger portion of the meal. I felt his love through the simple gestures.

Lastly, we successfully cooked shakshuka two Sundays in a row (recipe here). Which means, we are doing well in this adulting thingy. Btw, by we, I mean not me.

New things in Melbourne expat life

Ever since my talk with Liz, I have been trying my best to disengage from the autopilot mode as much as possible. I queued for potato cakes at the shop in the train station, which tasted horrible, almost paper like; took different commute routes; wore dresses and red lipstick to work; bought the Strengths Finder 2.0 book after a long due hour long convo with my BFF, Jik; went to different coffee shops; ate pumpkin curry for lunch; said yes for a weekday drink session; heck, even sneaked out for a cider or two on Friday avro.

I think it’s working, life is getting back on the track ever since I started doing all these unusual things.

Things the Melbourne expat loves this month

I got a not-but-looks-super-close-like-engagement-ring ring from Fafa for Valentine. It looks quite close to a Tiffany engagement ring I showed him years ago. He remembers! Or I have successfully instilled it into his mind. Either way, it’s really sweet of him. Thank you Fafa!

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I also got a beautifully painted self portrait in the mail, titled Nana and Miaw. a gift from a blogger friend, Rima. Thank you Rima!

If you noticed, I changed the blog designed very recently. This time, instead of paying a designer to help me with it, I tried to do everything by myself. I installed Paperio theme and have been toying around with it. The design is still a long way from the finish, but there is a certain satisfaction that it’s all done by yours truly.

Melbourne expat media consumption for the month

I started with two books this month. Messengers, it tells the story of the author time as a bicycle courier in the city of London. It’s pretty interesting. But the reason I bought the paperback from the famous Readings bookstore at Carlton was mostly because it felt wrong to step out from the award winning bookstore without carrying a token from it. The second one is an audible called What Would Beyonce Do? By a stand up comedian, Luisa Omielan. The thing is, I am not a fan of Queen B. I think she is rather overrated. A sentiment I shared with Chris D’elia, who just launched a funny as F podcast called Congratulations, where he just go on solo rants. It’s gold people!

A recently discovered blog that I have been reading religiously back to its years long archive is Celia in Tokyo. I can relate to how she writes and also have been taking notes on the interesting place to visit on our up coming Japan trip.

Lastly, I almost finished American Gothic, a murder drama TV show in STAN. I like it, but I am not invested with the characters yet.

Melbourne expat life next month

Well, technically it’s this month. My best friends, Vi and Yin are coming from Singapore and will be staying over at our place. I haven’t seen them for months and I am so looking forward for it. I want to take them to my favorite coffee/brunch/Srilankan restaurant/pub. Also, introduce South Yarra/T2tea/Dangersfield/Gorman/Carlton/Spellbox/Royal Arcade/Joylati/Peter Alexandra to them. And on the weekend they are here, we are off to Great Ocean Road. So yeah, March is going to be great!

I plan to cook another simple dish this month. Something I can pack and bring back to work the next day. Maybe spaghetti aglio olio. What do you think?

In the spirit of putting effort to gain new experiences, I booked a tarot reading appointment. Have you ever gotten professional tarot reading? What should I prepare? Do I need to cleanse my aura? Or better come as now so they can read my current aura and advise me on it. I will be asking about work, PR, wedding, book publishing and migrating to Japan. Will keep you updated on the outcome.

Lastly, I miss Miaw a lot. Hopefully he will be back from America this month. Meanwhile, I am going to re-watch Kiki’s Delivery Service this weekend.

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