Monday, September 19, 2011
Tram No 8 goes to Toorak Road
If you read this blog frequently, you'll find that I talk about Melbourne a fair bit. And I think I make it sound like this blissful place, this place of sunshine, good food and wonder.
Partly, I was a student there and there was just so much more freedom. Partly, the food really IS better there. And partly, it's a less insecure place. It's a city grown comfortable with itself, its immigrant quarters and its Victorian past.
Three years in Singapore is also three years away from the city that I grew to love. It's odd because even when I was lonely and heartsick there, I still loved the city. On the wet and cold nights, staring out of the tram windows, I felt that the city shrugged itself around me, mourned with me and sent its angels to make me smile.
Here's something I wrote when I was still living there - a different girl in a different time -
10 May 2006:
".... I think I must have finally hit that stage where one gets mad obsessions about pop stars with floppy hair and nonsensical crushes on random boys.
Today on my way home from school(actually it was the supermarket but school sounds less aunty) this dark haired medium tall guy got on and sat across me and started gabbing on his mobile in french.
And I swear, he had the most adorable smile I had ever seen in my life. He was on the phone chatting volubly and amiably with his friend and occasionally smiling at a joke and I swear that the charm and general good naturedness contained in that smile made the stars dance.
He had these impishly crooked teeth, you know, the kind that only serve to make a smile ever more boyish and full of mischief and dimples that flashed and winked every time he moved his lips.
It made my day, it really did. I mean, all those glum looking city slickers around me and you get this guy in a grey coat and green scarf who smiles like the world is this great wonderful place and I just wanted to beam back at him in return. As it was, I sat there with my lips twitching in an effort not to start grinning like a mad stalker person and only let myself smile when I got off at my stop.
Whereupon he sailed off on tram 8, still on his phone saying unintelligible things in french,still smiling his adorable smile and probably never to be seen again.
Isn't it mad? And isn't it so 15 years old and feeling faint because the boy you liked breathed in your direction today?"
Ah well. Singapore, you have got to work on increasing your incidence of cute, dimpled french speaking boys with angelic smiles! :)
DISCLAIMER: Ahem. French boy on tram really existed. But I never saw him again. It was fun writing about him though.