Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Wednesday on the Go

If this blog post comes out somewhat broken up today, it's because I'm writing as and when I can. A typical day for me involves going to a school at 8.00 am and running a class until 9.00 am. I then have a break till lunch time, but have to drive somewhere else, and then drive somewhere else for later classes, and then drive to our centre for evening classes. Wednesday is particularly mobile. The good thing is that I get the chance to see lots of Melbourne, and lots of cafes.

I'm currently sat in the Armstrong Street Foodstore where my first coffee of the day has been brought to me. I'm trying to cut down on the coffee I have, but I'll still have one or two a day. My preference is for a long black, which is like an Americano for those of you not in Australia, but I'll occasionally have an espresso. I like to spend 20-30 minutes of the day in a cafe, leaving the real world and getting lost in a book. I'm currently reading the Booker Prize longlisted "Hystopia" by David Means. I have to say that I struggled to get into the novel to begin with, but I'm so glad I did. It has become absolutely electrifying, with beautiful writing describing both the brutality and beauty that runs through the book. So that's where I'm off to now. I'll write more later....

...from the seafront near St Kilda and Middle Park, my next job takes me inland to Camberwell. Much like St Kilda, Camberwell has no shortage of places to grab a coffee. I'm currently sitting in Cattivo, which has a great range of food including plenty of vegetarian options. In fact, it's a shame I'm not hungry, because all the food looks delicious, especially the eggplant parmigiana. The coffee is smooth and mild flavoured with a slightly chocolate after taste. It is not as thick as I like, but it is still a good coffee.

There is just a week and a half left before I travel to Singapore with Caroline for a week holiday, and my thoughts are beginning to go there. I'm even following Singapore's fortunes at the Chess Olympiad (and Hong Kong for that matter!). Like many, my only experience of Singapore has been Changi airport, which is quite amazing in itself. Coming form the UK, short breaks to south east Asia are a luxury I'd never have dreamed of before moving to Australia. Now it seems like a short hop! I really don't know what to expect from Singapore, and am excited to be staying there. It seems a hotch-potch of cultures, Chinese, Indian, colonial British, Malay etc. The next week and a half I'll be open to suggestions as to what to do in Singapore from anyone that's been there.

I've moved east again and picked up a roll from my favourite bakery in Mitcham. The ladies in the bakery struggle with spoken English, so it's always fun trying to order something with misunderstandings going both ways. The best was when i asked for an egg and salad roll, and was made a hot pork roll. We all had a laugh about my funny way of speaking!

Of course misunderstandings are a daily hazard to most adults in first world countries. As someone who has to drive a lot for work I can certainly testify to that. The one thing I've noticed is how misleading car stickers can be. But I've learned to interpret their true meanings:

You might think this is a witticism for "I've got a crap car", but it in fact means "Stay clear of me because I'm a maniac driver behind the wheel"

You might think this means "Please keep your distance for the safety of my child", but it in fact means "Stay clear because I'm a maniac driver behind the wheel".

You might think this means "Respect braking distance" but it in fact means "Stay a fuck of a long way clear because I'm a maniac driver behind the wheel of a huge fucking truck".

I'm back home safely now and ready to settle down to read (no chess at the Olympiad tonight). I've always got more than one book on the go. I'm reading a thriller by Australian author Matthew Reilly which is an easy, page turning, romp. I kind of think of books like most people think of TV series. I can change books like changing TV channels, and then go back a bit later to catch up on the other book. It also means that I can read different types of books and have something to read dependent on my mood. Anyway, that's all from me today, it'll probably be back to chess again tomorrow.

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