Friday, January 30, 2009

New flatmate and sensory delights


I have a new flatmate! Well, subject to the landlord's approval, I do. Not the guy, the girl. I'm disappointed he said no ("Something else came up"), but I think I'll be happy sharing with Anna. I'm pleased finding someone good wasn't a prolonged exercise, too.


After Melbourne's second hottest day ever (0.5 degrees off the record of 45.6 or 114.8F), we had a weak cool change late this afternoon. Yay! I'd had enough of dessicated eyeballs and feeling like my head was going to burst into flame as I set foot out of my office. It's now a pleasant 24 degrees outside (at 10.30 pm). Because it's much cooler out than in and I haven't walked much this week, I took myself for a walk along the river into the ciity and back at 9.00 pm.

It was beautiful out there - a sensory delight. There were bats flying low over the river as I crossed the Morell Bridge and a sliver of moon hung low in the sky just beside Eureka Tower. I could hear gunfire and voices from the open air cinema in the Botanic Gardens, and then a roar from the crowd watching the Australian Open Tennis at Rod Laver Arena.

The breeze was deliciously cool on my skin. There were lots of couples and groups (and a few possums) along the riverbank making the most of the brief reprieve from the the heat. (It's going to be 37 tomorrow.) I could hear the throng of people at Federation Square and the Transport Bar long before I got near them. People were gathered to watch the Nedal v Verdasco match on the big screen in Fed Square.

Somewhere, someone was cooking snags* on a barbecue and the smell wafted to me on the breeze, along with the sound of bagpipes played by a busker on Princes Bridge.

The city buildings were unusually dark because of massive black-outs caused by "a major supply interruption", which has left 350,000 houses without power (obviously not me) and the train network in chaos.

Although I've seen it hundreds of times, I stopped to admire the view of the city from the south bank of the river, looking over the Swan Street bridge and the long reflection of the illuminated Nylex Clock on the river. I heard something stirring in the black water but I couldn't see anything apart from ripples and rings on the surface. Dang. Crisp leaves scuttled along the footpath behind me as I walked, carried by the wind.

I know I've said it before, but gee, I love where I live.

* sausages


Abbeysmum said...

That must be a load off your mind, hope it works out well for you, as you say it could have been a long drawn out process.
I know we have been a bit focused on the heat, but it just occured to me that the poor tennis players must have been on the verge of constant heat stroke,are there not rules of when it is no longer safe to play such sport at those temperatures ???

Frisky Librarian said...

It is a relief all right! I'm particularly glad I found someone before my rent increase takes effect in March.

There has been a kerfuffle about them closing the roof on the tennis centre, but I admit I haven't paid close attention to it. It would certainly be horrendously hot out there - even with the roof closed.

I have been telling myself that things could be worse - some people have been without power for three days and haven't been able to even log the problem because the phone line is constantly engaged. The rail system has been in chaos with thousands of trains cancelled and people left stranded in the heat or crammeded onto what trains are running. My tram was like an oven yesterday, but at least I haven't had to wait long for one and I'm only on it for 10 minutes anyway. And there are thousands and thousands of people who don't work in air conditioned comfort and who don't have air con at home. I'm one of the lucky ones, that's for sure. Always good to keep some perspective!

dam buster said...

Well described jayne. It certainly was nice to be in the breeze when that change came through. Thankfully it kept going otherwise we would have had the humidity to go with the heat.

Stephanie said...

Beautiful. Made my heart swell with Melbourne-love.

Small Footprints said...

Over here we're dealing with power outages because of the ice, snow and cold. It seems that the world is full of extremes right now.

One of the things I like most about summer is that one can hear all the sounds of other lives ... and it somehow makes us all one family. Your description of your walkabout was lovely! It made me forget the cold for a moment. :)

Take Care!

Small Footprints

Frisky Librarian said...

Hi db. Thank you. Yep, there are few things as welcome as a cool breeze after a week of 40 degree heat. Well, a drenching of rain I guess. Remember rain? The wet stuff that used to fall from the sky?

Hello Stephanie. Thank you. I'm glad the heart-swelling was contagious.

Hi small footprints. We are living in extreme times all right. Not sure which is worse - extreme heat or cold. As bad as each other, I suppose.

I'm pleased I could take your mind off the cold for a few minutes.