Max, Charlotte, and I were hugely excited to get to Melbourne because this is where Jake is living. They got to stay with him while I went to Thailand to co-lead a 10-day study abroad.

Melbourne is lovely although the weather was hard to predict. It was summer one day (and actually the season we were there) but some days it felt cool and rainy.

We did so many things it’s hard to get it all in here for one post. We hit up quite a few markets (happens with a chef son) and they were impressive. Fresh oysters and all kinds of nibbles.

Jake’s restaurants are in the brown, historic building.

Melbourne view from Jake’s apartment

Some of the highlights were all our shows we were able to see. Hamilton, Phantom of the Opera, and Joseph were so much fun. COVID limited our show viewing so we tried to make up for it.

We also had a great evening at the botanical gardens watching movies on a giant screen (complete with huge fruit bats flying overhead). We saw the Whitney Houston movie, I Wanna Dance With Somebody, and it was almost like being at a concert. Amazing night.

We ate some amazing food around the city but the best was my son’s restaurant — Mesa Verde. Wow is it ever good.

We had two house swaps over the holiday season so spent Christmas in a suburban beach town. We took lots of day trips from there into the countryside and cooked some good food at home in the really nice kitchen. We even had chickens in the garden that we cared for and were able to get eggs.

And then for New Year we moved to a city house that was a beautifully renovated warehouse in Fitzroy area. NYE was spent wandering down the road to an Afghani restaurant (complete with belly dancer) and then watching the city fireworks from our roof top patio.