Thats how i sold the extra day away.
I was determined to have it. The idea of time alone to wander and look and think and be was just too tempting and being in Melbourne for work anyway made the extra time affordable. I cannot remember the last time I chose to be alone like this; eat alone, travel alone, explore alone, maybe never. I didnt call on friends to spend time with. I really wanted to be by myself, to be able to enjoy this free time on my terms.
I woke early, used the hotel gym and packed my bags, stored them and left. I walked across town through city gardens, passing groups of people doing tai-chi with swords, without swords, runners, dads up early with small children walking dogs, cycling their kids tandem to yoga. It really reminded me of Europe; busy inner city full of family and life.I walked down Brunswick St, one of my favourites, got a paper, found a coffee shop and sat reading for an hour and a half, eating my Florentine eggs, sipping latte and feeling very very content.
When I was done sitting and reading I walked for hours. Browsing shops, transversing suburbs, looking, listening and enjoying the freedom of my pace. Tired but smiling I arrived at the Japanese Bath House, worn out from five hours on the move and in a small amount of agony at having to walk past the Books for Cooks Shop, which looked soo inviting but Id run out of time. My reason for a layover in Melbourne. I knew that after walking so long i would really appreciate lounging in a huge hot bath. So i stripped, showered, scrubbed and scrubbed and scrubbed and sank into that steaming deep, dark, hot pool, shut my eyes and drifted for an hour enjoying the snippets of conversation from other women and the gentleness of time. First time I had bathed without friends too. Solo bathing is very different, you cant hide behind conversation. You do all your nakedness in silence. I had looked forward to this too.
So feeling soothed, clean and just a little bit floppy, i dried and changed into the sweet smelling Kimono set provided, consciously slowing down everything i was doing, rested some more on tatami matting, sipped tea and then sucummed to an hour shiatsu massage. Chicken soup for the soul indeed. Being alone with my thoughts, my self, my inner monkeys whilst adventuring was so good. Liberating. I cant believe it took me to nearly 40 to discovery the joys of such time. Maybe its only now i have the confidence to make the time, possibly the resources to have such time. To not feel guilt at asking for leisure time and leave the responsibility of children behind for a moment.
So the Bloke is now enjoying a well deserved lie-in with coffee, and a snooze no doubt, and I have to work out how to deal with my mega morphed carbon footprint from all those work induced air miles.