Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Uniqueness part one

I was thinking today about those things are unique to your city. By that I don't mean something that is merely unusual, or that can be imitated in other places. I'm talking about those experiences that are truly different.

For example, in Sydney it might be standing on Sydney Harbour at The Rocks and taking in the majesty of the Opera House, or catching that first view of the bridge lit up at night when the Manly ferry swings around. Alternatively it might be something more humble, like that somewhat sad lighted cube in Civic in Canberra that changes colour when you talk to it. I would bet you can't recreate that experience anywhere else in the world.

Here is my tentative pick for Melbourne:

  1. Running your hand along the water wall at the NGV like a little kid.
  2. The experience of having your AM radio reception (yes I'm a Newsradio junkie) cut off with weird hissing sounds when a tram goes past you.
  3. The experience of being madly "dinged" by a tram driver who objects to you being on the tram tracks trying to do a right hand turn. (More disconcerting is the relatively new phenom en of the tram driver using their microphone to broadcast their disapproval to the whole street, causing everyone to turn around and look when they say "You in the blue Camry, in a hurry are we? Is that why you need to block this entire tram full of 60 people, just so you can turn right? Well get a move on love or get out of my way.")
  4. The roar from the crowd at the MCG just after the singing of the national anthem at AFL finals.
  5. Shaking your head at how the Sandridge Rail Bridge is a blight on the Yarra. I know we keep it because it was one of the first railway bridges to use steel girders but it is still a bloody eyesore.
  6. Buying fruit from the sellers at the Victoria Market, and apologising for giving large notes to be met with that uniquely Australian-Greek accented response "Doesn't matter".
  7. Seeing Paul Kelly sing Leaps and Bounds at the Prince of Wales.
More to come as they come to me.