(more particular, Melbourne)
Last time I wrote about the things I miss about my home country. Now I would like to spend some time on the things that I love about where I currently live.
- Relaxed Attitude
I love the mentality that there is more to life than working. Work hours are reasonable (sometimes with a 10am start) and as are lunch breaks. I do not believe in living to work. There is more to life than just paying the bills and I think most Australians have realized this. Perhaps the relaxed attitude can go a bit far (especially in some places, ahem, Northern Queensland), but I think it is better to err on the side of relaxed than the side of stressed.
- Café Culture
Oh the coffee! I am a coffee lover and even though my favorite coffee and brewing technique (i.e. Colombian) is not easy to come by, I still enjoy having a cuppa in a café. Melbourne is littered with cafes! One my street alone, there are more than twelve. Twelve! That’s crazy! But I must admit that I love it! I love going to my local café and sitting down to read or write or just watch the birds and people walk by. It is the perfect lazy afternoon. The café culture is so strong here, that when I went to Sydney, nothing compared. There is just something about Melbourne where hundreds of cafes can thrive. Everyone loves their coffee here!
- Coastal Living
Need I say more? I am a beach junkie and if I had the choice, I would live in my bathers (i.e. bathing suit). I love how the majority of Australians live on the coast and most cities are built near the shore. This helps the relaxed mindset, I believe, and brings us closer to our natural roots: the ocean. I am not very demanding but I must live near the ocean. It does something for me that nothing else can…
- Being a Woman/Mom
I am not a mom, but I am a woman and that means that I am concerned about certain things. Australia is going in the right direction in terms of maternity leave, breastfeeding in public, and an overall attitude about women. Sure, the whole world needs to work on this topic, but Australia is trying, and that is more than some other countries. My biggest congratulations for Australia? Maternity leave. When I realized the difference between here and my home country, I was appalled. 2-3 months compared to 1-2 years? Are you serious?! Is it really so much to ask to be a working mom but still have a good relationship with your baby? (Deep breath.) Enough said.
- A Livable City
I live ten minutes from the city centre and yet, I walk out my door to a large park/forest. Melbourne is known as the Garden City and it’s no wonder. There are parks and green spaces everywhere! It’s the best of both worlds, where you can enjoy all that a city can offer with places to still ‘get away from it all’. It is perfect for someone like me, who loves the natural side of things but would still like to go to a concert without driving two hours.
So that’s my top five for Australia (and Melbourne). It is truly a great place to live. No country or city is going to be perfect, I realize that, but realizing the good and bad in everything helps my perspective and things that I value more than others.