I moved to Melbourne in 2001. I guess I’m pretty local now. The first few years were tricky and sometimes I’m still reminded that I live her but I’m not FROM here.
Melbourne is one awesome place to live. The best city in the world, or so they say. I certainly love it and maybe you’re thinking about loving it too. I’ve got some things you’ll need to understand if you want to try and assimilate.
Things you need to know about living in Melbourne-
The weather- I know you’ve heard about the whole “4 seasons in one day” thing, BUT IT’S TRUE. And that’s not the only way weather will be a massive part of your life. You will learn to always always ALWAYS assume it might drop to jumper weather, even in full summer, and pack accordingly. You will need to be ale to talk about the weather at all times. Complaining is highly valued, as is discussing the random, intense weather event that occurred without notice the day before. You need to be all over taking an instagram pic of sunshine when it occurs. You need to learn the washing line game and peg out and bring in your clothes several times to get them remotely dry in winter and then hang them out while getting your skin flayed off your body by the sun in summer. You will need a hot weather plan for the week it is above 40 deg in summer. You will need to watch for snow if you live in the outer suburbs in winter. Know the water is almost always too cold for swimming. Get a weather app, a coat, a beanie, a hat, some sunscreen, some gumboots and practice saying “how about that weather!” and you’ll be fine.
This is at Mt Macedon, about an hour from the city.
The AFL- You don’t have to like AFL, but it helps. Although the locals treat the sport as something that will always be way too clever for people not raised with it to understand. Seriously, like rocket science. If you like sport, it’s a great one and I am totally converted. If you don’t, at least know that you are supposed to either love Collingwood or hate them-NO OTHER OPTION. And if it’s not your thing at least know when to avoid driving anywhere near the MCG.
Diversity- If you come from a conservative, mostly anglo area you need to get your head around the crowd that lives here in Melbs. It’s everyone. You will see tattoos, burqas, turbans, yarmulkes, homeless people, gentrifiers, openly LGBQTI peeps, bogans, hipsters and so much more. It’s a pretty rich, diverse, accepting, culture down here (for the most part). I recommend getting over yourself if these, or any other form of “not you” is problematic.
Trams- If I can offer one piece of advice it would be to revise the road rules when sharing the road with trams. Ask the person who nearly plowed into a bunch of people getting off one-ME. They had right of way, I had no idea. And hook turns, do that shit with a local first.
Sydney- Melbourne is better or GTFO
Keep a list of places you want to go- There is so much to do within a 3 hour drive of Melbourne. SO MUCH. Places to eat, drives to take, landmarks, things to see and do. People who are local will have had their whole lives to go to Phillip Island or Puffing Billy or Flower Drum and so on and on. You’ll be all “yeah, I’m going to do that!” and promptly forget about it until years later when there will be 40 more things you want to do. Make a list and work through it. Melbourne really has some gems.
Enjoy it! I love our awesome city, maybe you might too.
So, locals, you have anything you’d like to add?