15 October 2017:
It’s almost been a year since the election, but the disappointment, sadness, and anger are still as vivid as ever. It was a strange day for us. We were actually on our way to visit Kevin’s old roommate and his family, who lived in a town about an hour outside of Melbourne, called Ballarat. Never has the time difference been so important. When we boarded the plane to Melbourne, it was just before 1200pm, which meant it was 2230 EST.
Here’s what the map looked like then:
The flight to Melbourne is just under 3 hours, so we were about to be unplugged from the world in what seemed to be one of the most critical periods in my life. And things weren’t looking good.
After we landed, there was a hive of activity around me as I tried to get the results. This is what I found:
It was heartbreaking. When I said it didn’t look good, the people in the row behind me, who I think were German, asked “for whom?”. I replied “humanity”. Everyone looked dejected.
Once we were on the ground, we really weren’t sure what to do. It was weird to be so far away from friends and family during this period. We were in Melbourne, a city we really wanted to spend time in, a city we were excited to explore, but we had a hard time focusing. This is literally the only picture I took that evening.
We were staying in a nice little airbnb apartment, which was about four blocks from the train station in West Melbourne. To be honest, the day was such a blur. We took the SkyBus in from the airport (there is currently no train). In the middle of the day it runs every 10 minutes and takes about 30 minutes to get into town. It was $18 one way, per person, or $35 round trip. You can buy tickets right out in front of the airport, and then just hop on the next bus that arrives. It’s pretty easy, although not cheap.
We ate at Cafe Corretto, an Italian restaurant near the University of Melbourne. It was delicious, although to be honest, I feel like we probably spent most of the night on our phones, trying to dissect what just happened. Kevin remembers eating outside, and enjoying the atmosphere.
The next day we walked to the Queen Victoria Market, and had some breakfast. We had actually planned to go there the day before for dinner, not realizing that it’s only open from 9am to 4pm. After breakfast, we went to the train station to take the PT to Ballarat. It wasn’t too hard to figure out how it all worked. We needed a myki card, which we bought for $6.00 at the station.
We took the mid day train out to Ballarat, which took just under an hour and a half. Once in the station, we were greeted by Doug, Kevin’s old college roommate. More on that part of the trip to come …!