Big Dogg Loose in Melbourne

16Nov09

This week we have been joined on our adventurin’ by Susie’s brother Steve (or ‘Big Dogg Stevie Aitch’ as he prefers to be called). After arriving from the UK, Steve caught the Skybus to Melbourne’s city centre where an official welcoming committee had convened which consisted of myself (hello) and Susie.

As Steve stepped off the bus to muted cheering and a slow handclap, we were rather surprised to see that he only had a smallish backpack with him. Initially, ‘Big Dogg’ tried to claim that he was traveling light and only required his toothbrush and innate sense of fair play. However, following some intense and prolonged questioning – “seriously, where’s the rest of your stuff”? he revealed that it had been lost by the airline. Fortunately he flew Air China so I imagine a quick, simple phone call will cut through any red tape.

It transpired that this baggage misplacement mishap was only the latest in a fairly long line of a rather tortuous journey. He was delayed by several hours at the beginning as a few of the on-board aero-toiletés were being repaired. Eventually the lavatory techno-boffins had to admit defeat and the passengers were allowed to board the plane on the understanding that the expulsion of bodily fluids would be very much frowned upon (which I understand is to become their new marketing slogan).

Old man SMALL

The stresses of such a long journey had taken a very heavy toll on Steve

In total, Steve’s journey took around thirty three cross-legged hours. He revealed that much of that time was filled by watching the ‘Sex and the City’ movie on a constant loop as he drifted in and out of consciousness. Naturally, after such an arduous trek he was fairly exhausted and a little stressed. To help him unwind, Steve insisted that all he really wanted to do was order up some Cosmo’s, have a good gossip and take us all out shoe shopping for the afternoon.

Shoes

Yes they're fabulous but will Big like them?

We managed to talk him out of it and headed instead for Federation Square. It was a beautifully sunny day and we found a shaded spot near a live, Spanish band where deckchairs and cushions had been provided by my favourite benevolent government authority. I was reminded once again of how exceptional Melbourne is (stop me if I’ve mentioned this before). If this had been Covent Garden in London, Times Square in New York or Lakeside Shopping centre in Thurrock – you can be fairly sure that all the deckchairs would have been taken, you would have had to pay, there would be a massive queue and you’d be hassled to buy expensive drinks. Plus youngsters don’t know they’re even born and it was better in my day.

After a drink at the Rooftop Cinema and a spot of lunch, we dropped Steve off at ‘The Nunnery’ a youth hostel fairly close to our place. The Nunnery is a former convent and used to be home to the ‘Sisters of Eternal Sacrifice’ until 1888 when they decided they just couldn’t be bothered anymore.

Steve otisde nunnery normal

Steve outside The Nunnery

 

Steve outside nunnery

Steve outside The Nunnery as it would have happened in a sane world

I arrived back at The Nunnery at 19:00 hours that evening to call for Steve. A couple in their early 40’s (I don’t have their names but she looked like a Phillipa and he had the air of a Dunbar) were walking up the path to the front door so I followed them in.

There was immediately a very awkward moment as they just stood there quite openly staring at me. Naturally my first thought was that they must be physically attracted to me so I tried to ignore them. I decided that the best course of action was to walk to Reception. At this point I observed that there was no Reception. It also occurred to me that The Nunnery didn’t have a pathway to the front door earlier that day. Further visual analysis revealed that I was not in The Nunnery after all. I was standing (trespassing if you want to get technical) in the hallway of a private guest house.

I had further confirmation of this when Phillipa, in a very hostile voice which barely concealed her inappropriate lust for me, piped up with “can I help you”? I explained that I had meant to go to The Nunnery which was next door and had accidentally wandered in here as it looked rather similar. There was a palpable release of tension as Phillipa and Dunbar realised that I was not some crazed thief intent on pillage. Ironically, I chose this moment to tie them up and take their valuables but can you blame me?

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2 Responses to “Big Dogg Loose in Melbourne”

  1. 1 mburnham

    found your blog through a link on the idle foundation. very good reading, and what a cool adventure. it’ll be fun to follow along with your blog.
    cheers, all the best,

    mb

  2. 2 davexxxx

    Thanks very much mb!


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