Living outside of Melbourne, there's always pressure to make the most of any trip where I find myself in the city...for that reason I think I view it differently to people who are just a short ride on public transport away. I have my favourite places I hit up almost every time...I like to explore some new places I've read about...if there's time (and my feet aren't killing me) I like to randomly wander and see what I find. Here's a collection of recent photos that represent all those takes on how I spent my time in the city. On a side note, I've just noticed an unintentional bookish/lettering theme...
- Pellegrini's...I ask you, is there anything more Melbourne than a quick bite & granita at Pellegrini's before a footy final? It's probably the closest thing to a traditional diner we have...except it's Italian. They have a big communal table out the back, but I like to sit on the bar stools and listen to the banter between the regulars and the Italian guys who have been there forever. It's the kind of place that probably looks exactly the same as it did 50 years ago, and as legend goes, they were the first to bring an espresso machine to Melbourne in 1954. It's classic comfort food...no frills and not pretending to be anything other than itself, but also just happens to be an old school Melbourne icon
- Little Library...a teeny space in the giant Melbourne Central where you can borrow/swap books for free. I read about it on Twitter I think and wasn't intentionally looking for it but just happened to wander past...love this idea
- Hill of Content - I must confess that even though I'm not supposed to, I miss the giant book superstore that was Borders...and I think this is why I keep wandering into other random stores in Melbourne hoping to find one that can partly take its place. I know I'm supposed to be all "independent bookstores should rule forever" but there you have it, I loved it, I miss it, I haven't 100% moved on. So after Luke went to the footy, I wandered...an absolutely freezing/wet Melbourne night...and when I stepped into this store it hit me like a wave...I'd forgotten how good the smell of new books all gathered in one place was. And so I browsed, umbrella in tow for a long time...the sound of trams and the odd horse and carriage on the street below me...feeling a little bit like I'd stepped back in time. Hill of Content can be one of my replacement contenders...I miss the armchairs & hot chocolates of Borders but this place does have an element of charm.
- I didnt go into the rare books store...it looked a little serious for me...I just like how the sign looked against the skyscrapers. The other is from Typo, which I've only just recently fallen in love with. Strange I know considering my obsession with stationery and all things quirky/indie/washi (that was a really unsuccessful attempt at trying to categorise Typo beyond stationery, it can't really be done...just check the website if you're wondering what I'm on about and you'll see why I say that). There was another book store around this point...it seemed to be bookended (excuse the pun) by two major streets...Collins & Bourke maybe? It was cavernous with chandeliers & stone floors...it didn't feel snuggly enough but I bet it's awesome in summer. I stopped long enough to look for the penguin cloth covered classics range (I want the `Emma' one with chairs on the cover) and kept walking.
- QV Melbourne...home of Tutti Frutti frozen yoghurt. I LOVE frozen yoghurt...so to discover Tutti Frutti last year...where you can pay by weight and add your own toppings...well it almost made up for Borders closing. My sister recently got me onto their Taro flavour...I was very resistant, but it is crazy good. I always go 1/2 Taro, half strawberry or natural...with chopped up strawberries. Lately I've been wandering further into the depths of QV with my frozen yoghurt to see if the Melbourne Big W stocks my all time favourite maxi skirt in other colours...sadly I think I will never see it again.
- Wilkins & Kent...that link does not aptly describe this store...from what I can gather there is two...this one is more homewards & miscellaneous lovely stuff whereas the other one is more focused on furniture design maybe? Nevertheless...it's one of my favourite stores in one of my favourite parts of Melbourne (Little Bourke from Elizabeth Street up) and if you're in the hood check it out...just gorgeous
- These ones taken on a walk towards La Citta in Degraves Street (which becomes one of those cosy little laneways that Melbourne is famous for)...you can always rely on them for a yummy breakfast, lunch or dinner. They just happen to be within seconds of two other favourites. Little Cupcakes is the first...did you know that miniature cupcakes are even better than regular ones because you can try more flavours...and try giving someone a box of mini cupcakes and see if they don't just hug you on the spot because they look adorable. Secondly, a cosy children's bookstore known as The Little Bookroom. Here I was stoked to find the Moomin books...curious Swedish/Finn tales about trolls that look like loveable little hippos...I realise now as an adult that they were kind've obscure back then so it kind've explains why no-one else seems to recognise them in conversation...but I loved them regardless! Also, if you find yourself within arms reach, pick up Herman & Rosie...a book as adorable as it's description: "Set in New York, this gorgeous picture book is a story about friendship, life in the big city, and following your dreams by Gus Gordon. This is a tale about a big city. It's a tale of hotdogs and music and the summertime subway breeze. It's a tale of singing on rooftops and toffees that stick to your teeth. But most of all, it's the tale of Herman and Rosie."