I ran my 6th 42km marathon in Melbourne, Victoria, on the 9th October 2011. It was a very dreary wet morning start to a very cool days of running. Some 6,000 runners started the 42km run/jog/walk to complete the 42km journey. I was just keen to complete my 6th rather than breaking a PB. Although, I was surprised at the layout of the run course which turned out to be very runner friendly indeed. No heartbreak hills, no meandering inclining bends it was all flat to a declining 4km sprint downhill to the finish chute. It was meant to be a very fast course, unfortunately for me, I hit the wall at the 22km mark, and then stopped, then began again to record a very modest 4hour 14 min finish time, my slowest marathon yet.
It was the first and last Melbourne Marathon I would run. I found Melbourne much to dreary for my liking. It hadn’t changed all that much since I was last in Melbourne in 1998, except there are much more stadiums and a hideous Federation square designed by some Military strategist considering a camouflage khaki theme for the Melbourne CBD, no doubt in anticipation of a thermonuclear conflict invasion attempt by Antartic nation of Penguins in Melbourne within the not too distant future.
In all the Melbourne trip was fun, the people seemed friendly in an impersonal touristy kinda way. I found the local Union blokes unfriendly towards me. The highlight of my visit to Melbourne was undoubtedly the Melbourne Aquarium and the Immigration Museum, which have to be called the multicultural and race relations museum of Australia for obvious reasons when once you walk out of it. The message conveyed is very good and hits right on the mark in terms of portraying the race relations history of this country.
I met one Samoan in Melbourne and only after I had run the 42km marathon, making me think that there aren’t any Samoans in Victoria at all. Although, I was informed that there were thousands of them in Melbourne. The one bloke I met wore a Samoan rugby union tracksuit similar to my Samoan rugby league tracksuit that I had worn for the 1992 Rugby League World Cup in Sydney. I had extended my hand in friendship only to see a disdainful reluctance by the Samoan bloke to shake my hand. I felt slightly indignant and decided not to talk to the oaffish thug and I walked away somewhat disinterested in the kindred meeting. This was the first and last time I had met a Victorian Samoan.
I had travelled to Melbourne alone and met no one I knew in Melbourne although I have travelled there so many times during the 1990s. I don’t like Melbourne people all that much and I am glad to return to Queensland where it is the better the devil you know situation.
A final word on the Victorian Police services, yes, I do think that they are the worse police service in the country. In Queensland, the police are notorious for bashing you then asking questions, in Victoria, the police shoot first then decide to question you.
Everyday I was in Melbourne I saw a car accident in front of me. Kaboom there was a brown car T boned by a white van. Then the following day another intersection collusion a white expensive sedan pummelled from the side by an equal smashed up green car. Weirdo Melbourne locals…
I had a lunch and dinner with a complete stranger woman from Perth, I shouted her as well, only because I wanted to talk to someone in Melbourne. I was bored afterall. People seemed to think that I was cheating on a spouse with their glances at me. I’m single, of course, and I have never met anyone in years. I found this woman slightly interesting then I heard of her baggage which made me almost squemish that I had decided that this dinner date was fine while it lasted and I’d better pay for the meal and make a quick exist from this city asap.
I did just that and flew back to Brisbane asap. Better single and free then being a busboy carrying someone elses luggage for the remainder my life.
Cheers people. Bye bye Melbourne and good riddance too.
18th October, 2011.