I'll say I haven't sensed a great deal of "hustle and bustle" of Christmas like I do in Utah. Usually at Christmas the stores are packed, traffic is terrible, and you can always overhear people in the crowded stores talking about gift purchases they are considering. You can even see people with lists they are checking off as they get all their shopping done. I haven't seen that here. I don't notice a lot of extra shopping happening. Maybe I'm unaware, but I'm fine with the more relaxed nature at Christmas. In the states we always talk about how we wish we could enjoy the season more. Here, people ARE! They are having pool parties, and BBQ picnics, and going to the beach!
We took a train into the city one evening to see all the Christmas displays.
Merry Christmas from Melbourne!
Leo is quite experienced at taking the train to the city. Some days he goes in alone or with friends to just explore. This time he went ahead of us to do some shopping. I brought Millie, Karly, and Henry and we all met up here at Christmas Square.
Fun facts: It costs $3.76 to go one-way into the city (about $2.70US). That includes the bus ride closest to our house that takes you to the train station. Then it's about a 35 minute ride to Flinder's Station (the main hub). Leo, Karly, and Millie all qualify for half-price "concession" fares. Henry travels free. And Henry LOVES riding the train. There is a free tram that runs a huge circuit around the CBD (Central Business District) so you can get to a lot of places.
St. Paul's Cathedral, right across from Flinder's Street Station
They have this huge advent calendar set up on the street. It starts at 25, and counts down to 1. So by Christmas Day the entire board is lit up.
It's a thing here to wrap the tree trunks in crochet, not just at Christmas. I especially love these decorated for Christmas. I'm totally doing this to a tree at our house. I need to plant a tree.
There is always a huge gingerbread display each year. I'll be honest; the actual gingerbread was a little ho-hum, but they put a great deal of time in the marzipan people and details. They feature notable parts of the city in their village.
So jealous they can decorate with petunias for Christmas!
Street performers are everywhere and they are very good. This is Tom Ward, who refurbished his guitar that got smashed on an air flight. He has all kinds of pickups in it and gets amazing percussion and sound from it. We stayed to listen for awhile. He played a song by Rodrigo y Gabriela, who have another song, Hanuman, that I really like. I was wishing he played it. As we were walking away, I heard it from down the block and dragged Allen back out to listen to it. The performers after Tom had starting playing that very song! It was great!
This is the town hall. At night, they project a Christmas show onto the building. The projections follow the intricate detail of the building. See the pictures below:
The show featured images and music to The Twelve Days of Christmas
Melts my heart every time I see them together.
Giant Lego Christmas Tree!