As I walk down the low arcades on Swanson Street in Melbourne my ears are filled with at least a dozen languages. You could get the same mix on a tram and half the streets of the city. I see a dark gray-eyed girl in the tram. Our eyes meet, and she speaks French into her cell phone. I dine at Pellegrini’s Espresso Bar, the only restaurant that I wanted to ensure I came back too. I will write more on them later.
After a fine meal, I headed back down the streets that clash the classic Victorian with everlasting class and the super modern skyscrapers with strange angles. I wait for my friend, John Acton or Coach "Action." I know John from the MUBC when I was there last. He no longer coaches, but takes care of trusts. He’s heading to India for three weeks in three days. Our meeting spot is Federation Square, an ultra modern steel and glass complex next to the Yarra.
They have incorporated cobble stones into the path. They are modern and cut with machines and even, but still retain the day’s heat. Eyes are glued to the huge TV screen. It looks at first glance like a SciFi movie – a perfect night and hundreds outside watching TV. But on second glance, you see the wine, food and blankets. I didn’t even bother with a first glance. The TV, or more accurately the speakers, called me. They were playing Carmen and blasting the opera across the square. It was free. It was music. I planted myself on the warm cobbles and waited for John.