You hear it all the time - 'we went to Melbourne on the weekend, what a surprise... So many laneways, so many cafes, the streets were buzzing, there's so much less attitude, the service was great' - and you tend to hold your chin in your hand, elbow nestled into the table and you respond to this positive barrage with 'I really should get down there more often you know... I've been meaning to go lately... but with work and her work....".
So I decided to do it. I used up some frequent flyer points and I headed down and I met some great people and I shopped my bow ties around. It was great to finally meet Shandor from Leopold's Empire and put a face to the interesting name. It was nice to meet the Poulakis' from Harrolds and it was nice to meet Laurent from Dormeuil. And the people were nice, and the laneways were so pretty, the cafes were ornate, and the streets had more buzz and there was less attitude..... all those things that Melbourne gets a great wrap for that singes the nostril hairs of Sydneysiders. But I embraced it. It is a wonderful city and Melbournians? have every right to be proud of their city.
To note to international readers: People from Sydney are always in a continuous rivalry with people from Melbourne over the battle for which city rules the roost of Australia. The following are massive commonly accepted generalisations:
1. Sydneysiders are overstated-, Melbournians are understated.
2. There is less attitude in Melbourne.
3. Melbournians have a twang, Sydneysiders have a nasality to their speech (although all still say G'day)
4. Melbourne people tend to travel to New York a lot and write independent films and wear grungier clothes.
5. The rest of Melbourne, that isn't wearing urban cool flannel, is very well dressed. Better than Sydney. Whereas Sydney is board shorts, sunglasses on top of your head and douche bag t-shirts, Melbourne is more refined.
6. Sydneysiders are more pretentious, less open and more narcissistic.
7. Everyone in Melbourne knows what good coffee is.
8. Sydneysiders think they are on top because of the natural beauty of Sydney - the harbour and the beaches.... and the Opera House.
If you want to add some massive generalisations, please feel free to list some below as a comment. As for me, I loved Melbourne and I think they might be right about Sydneysiders. We have a certain take on the world which is unjustified - given the beautiful laneways and ornate cafes I stumbled upon yesterday.