Following the Yellow Brick Road

This blog of artsy adventures has been quiet for a while now, as I’ve been busy setting up home in Melbourne, Australia. I’ve circled the city a few times in the past, but this year my travels have brought me to live in the magical land of Oz.

Melbourne city from the Rooftop Cinema

The multitude of cool and crazy creative shenanigans out here has lit me up all over again so I’m jumping straight back in to the blog without catching up on the last few months. My love of chronology will take a back seat so that I can get on with the business of wittering about books, street art, cultural events, books, festivals and, not to be forgotten, books.

So far I’ve encountered flashmobs, hordes of zombies, graffiti on walls that look impossible to reach and enough hipsters to make me adopt the word as a descriptor of people. I’ll dig up tales of past arts projects and curious encounters from time to time – like that one with the snake and the canoe* – but for now, it’s all about Oz and its creative vibe.

Why Melbourne?

It’s a City of Literature, a land of festivals; a big wide-open space of interesting folks that experiment, in a country that pays homage to a sun that occasionally, whimsically, turns it into a blazing and fatal inferno.

The immediacy of bushfires, with fire evacuation plans in suburban homes and ‘catastrophic’ warning signs lining highways, is new to me, as is the level of devastation the fires can so suddenly cause.

Melbourne - city view

While the heat can be intense, and I like my frosty mornings and hot port, I’ll admit that it’s refreshing to live in a place where Moonlight Cinema doesn’t need a Parka, good food is an obsession and that has PENGUINS living wild down the road. On the beach.

Most days, I’m ensconced at the State Library of Victoria, in an airy burrow plotting bookish treats. More to come on that in the weeks ahead, but I did enjoy meeting one of my literary heroes, sat in the Librarian’s chair:

Very Hungry Caterpiller at the State Library of Victoria

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* It was a big ole scary snake, so maybe I won’t revisit that one. But here’s the wiki on it, and I’m just glad it cuddled up under a neighbouring tent, not mine.

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