Let me explain the situation – I’ve arrived back in Melbourne a day early, having driven 600 miles in the last 36 hours, and flying back at midnight. Sarah and the girls have had a couple of days to spend time with her parents – they’re in the 5-star Windsor, and Sarah’s in a nice double room in the town-house part of the Nunnery hostel. Fortunately I’d been able to let Sarah know I’d be arriving earlier than planned, and she’d booked me in to the hostel. But not into the same room as the rest of them, or even in the same building. Oh no. Sarah had booked me a dormitory bed next door.
So I’m in what I described two days ago as ‘Smelly-dormitory-ville’, while Sarah is in the ‘Boutique-hotel’ part, with the girls. The chap on reception apologised, but explained that he’d “only done what your wife asked me to”. Let me share with you the contrast:
Sarah is in the town house, with a modern and stylish double bedroom, with a private lounge downstairs, complete with leather sofas, 8 seater dining table, and a shady courtyard.
And I’m in a 10-bed dormitory, which smells like a rugby-team changing room, and where people arrive and leave at all times of the day and night. The last residents didn’t come to bed until 3am and decided to turn all the lights on to help them guide their drunken frames to the top bunks, making all kinds of noises and grunts. Mmm, nice!
But this was all that Sarah could arrange at short notice, so I had to put up with it! And then I discovered that Sarah had arranged it for the next night too, rather than us all moving into a bigger room together (apparently, it would be a bit of hassle packing everything up just for one night). I think I may be getting a message!
Still, we had a good day in Melbourne, with Sarah, her Mum and the girls going shopping for some new clothes for the girls (after 5 months on the road, the white clothes aren’t quite so white any more!), and Sarah’s Dad and I visiting a couple of museums, followed by a swift half in the hotel bar – which turned into a merry three hours chatting to the locals about all things Australian. We’d noticed that the Australians are fond of their beer, but we hadn’t expected to spend the afternoon drinking with a police inspector, a rugby umpire and a stockbroker, on a normal work day! Still, it helped to make me less sensitive to my dormitory surroundings overnight!