Thursday, 5 January 2012

Good Bye Melbourne

View of Flinders Street Melbourne from South Bank, circa 2012.

I am leaving Melbourne in two days’ time.  The feeling of leaving this lovely city is always bad but I am coming back again in March. I will miss the view on the both banks of the Yarra River, miss the nice food here and many more. It is also the city that I feel safe walking alone at night holding my handbag, something which I can’t do in KL.

The public transport system is one of the best too. The city is accessible by trams while suburbs are connected by frequent train. The good thing is they are always on time and they are all connected in the same station. In KL, you never get LRT and Monorail that connects to one another in one station. Usually, you will have to walk a distance. 

There was once I waited for 30 min to board a commuter from Bandar Tasik Selatan to Nilai to meet my brother. Traffic conditions in Melbourne is good too because people are used to using public transport. I remember in 2008 when the Abdullah government hikes the price of petrol and diesel, he said that the money the government take will be spent on public transport.

Four years later, what do we get?  To drive to the Kelana Jaya LRT station, the nearest from my home takes much longer than I drive to office. Will the new MRT line be different? It has attracted many controversies even before the project take off. Our ministers should take the public transport often to know how it is like. One way to reduce traffic jam in KL is to have trams in the city center.

This time, I come across a bookshop that sell all books for $5 and those books are of latest edition so I bought about 20 of them. I also bought some old books from the second hand bookshop. I bought one book by Edgar Snow, “The Other Side of the River”. I have been searching for this book for a long time. Talking about this, books in Malaysia are expensive and it is hard to find second hand bookshops. Now I have to ship the books back to Malaysia but it is still cheaper than buying localy in Malaysia.

One thing bad about Melbourne airport is the efficiency of the people working there and their management arrangement. It is a shame for a develop country. When I arrived at Melbourne on the morning of 3rd December, there were 5 other flights arriving at the same time. The queue at the immigration was so long, about 600 people – but there are only 6 immigration counters open.

On that day, I knew if I were to wait, I will have to wait for more than an hour, so I actually did something notorious. Hehe. I won’t tell you what is it but I managed to bypass the queue.The queue for flights leaving Melbourne was long too because of the same reason and once I nearly miss my flight.

Au revoir – till me meet again.

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