Day 139 - Tickets in Two Pockets

Two Pockets
August 24th, 2015

It makes more sense to have Shimou shower first because she’ll take at least as long to put on her makeup as I will to shower. The problem with that thinking is that I waste time waiting for her to start, which in turn encourages her to waste time. The general mood is not of movement or getting anything done, but of lollygagging. My fault.

The cafe of today is Two Pockets cafe, spotted across the street from Don Don yesterday. It looked nice from outside, let’s see how it is inside. 

The Owner!
Honestly, this place is great. I like the layout, the merchandising is done smartly, and congruently with the decor of the place. Their focus is on fairtrade and organic, also offering a variety of chocolate bars that are handmade in England. 

Because of all these little, bizarre cafes and strange shops like Cobblers, I have decided that I’d love to live in a place full of hipsters. There’s so much variety, people doing weird hobbies all over the place, and you can find small groups of people who are entirely dedicated to something you thought died out long ago, such as Prospecting. Who the hell still pans for gold in a river?! Quite a few people, apparently.

Sitting area and Merch
We drink our coffees take-away because the cafe is closing, perusing nearby shops at Shimou’s leisure. The three of us move to the library. Luke departs after a few minutes. It feels good to work at the library. The drawback is that writing about the visa setbacks summons the same aimless frustration I felt before leaving Canada, and that brief stint in the hostel.

Back to the good: Going home will give me the break from instability. There will be the temptation to slack off or not do work, to give in to complacency, but not very much. I’ll be living with my parents in my hometown, where I don’t particularly like. I’ll have the direction I discovered here, and the stability to work on it without much social distraction. I'm basically going to become a hermit.

Gotta Eat Quickly!
I’ll be able to make Steve's bachelor party, no worries about attending the wedding. No handmade, custom suits for cheap, though... I guess this will all allow me to start an online business. If mildly successful, it could make my trip to China that much more enjoyable. If moderately successful, it could help me pay off my debt quicker and then travel around, using China as a launchpad. Further, China’s economy is being looked at as somewhat unstable and potentially going to take a downturn, which might have unforeseen consequences. Who knows, this setback could be the best thing to happen to me. Just gotta use the frustration as a tool. TNT in the mineshaft.

I had the exact amount of time to finish the work I wanted to fit into the library. Parkinson’s law in practice? Luke was waiting at the front of the building for us, and we went back to that hidden restaurant we went one of the first days here. Seems we’ve been here long enough to discover most of Luke’s favourite hotspots. The restaurant closed at 9:30, and we swing the rails back to GlenHuntly.*

Luke says that he wants us to go to their friends place, which is just around the corner. Seems there’re three reasons for going there: 1) to show off Shimou to his friends, 2) to eat Sydney’s famous watermelon cake, and 3) to show one of his friends to Shimou. Since the setback to do with China and getting addicted to one of those stupid mobile games (Fallout Shelter (iOS; Android)), I’ve been slacking on the flashcards. I know most of the questions fairly well, and how to make “If - then” statements, broadly, among a few common verbs and the pronouns. Nouns and adjectives are still black holes. We arrive at the friend’s apartment where there are 3 girls and 1 guy, all Chinese. All mandarin, all the time!

I’m feeling low because the caffeine has worn off after the writing, but I’m alert enough to vaguely follow what’s being said. I can generally tell when they’re talking about me, and follow the flow of what’s happening, filling in the blanks with body language and general tone. The friends are planning a trip to Tasmania, and pull out a box of products that a roommate had left when moving out. Shimou agreed to help sell some of the products, and was given a handful of them in return as thanks. The watermelon cake was interesting. Thin layers of pound cake alternating with cheesecake, and a slice of watermelon in the middle.

The State Library, how I will miss you
It seems like Shimou is using my tiredness as an excuse to leave, as she was basically dragged here by Luke. I play it up, and agree that I’m tired and super addicted to coffee. In truth, my caffeine addiction has totally gotten worse since coming to Melbourne. On our way to and from the friends place, I say that we’re going to be murdered or mugged. I pretend to be afraid, and point out the most innocuous things as evidence of it being a bad neighbourhood (a burnt out light bulb (it’s so dark!), a scratch on the wall (Oh my god! Gang signs!)). “you should be an actor” Luke sarcastically chuckles.

He keeps telling me I should be different professions: Detective, Teacher, Actor, Lecturer. Sometimes I don’t understand why he says actor, which has come up the most often. He’s said it when I’ve snuck up on Shimou, when I’ve practiced walking quietly, made up random facts, and when performing silly dances. I think he means performer. I’ll take it as a compliment. I used to be scared to draw attention myself in any way, and being comfortable enough to do strange things in public is an accomplishment in itself.

A Blurry Shot of the friend's Apartment building.
Back at the house, Sunny asks for help with her Psychological Capital presentation. PsyCap, for those who want to know, is the emotional response while at work, like hope, optimism, and generally being happy with the job. It’s not been researched that much, but the metareview she’s presenting basically confirms what’s been obvious to every non-management employee ever: liking your job makes you do things that are better for the company, while disliking your job makes you do counterproductive, non-desirable behaviours. Earth Shattering!

I asked Shimou to make me a coffee while paying attention to the presentation. I thought a small one would have done the trick. Due to my complimentary addiction to massive cups, she brought me the biggest cup, filled to the brim. Looks like I’ll be up late tonight. Not that it really matters, I’ll be going home in a week. The ticket was booked tonight, which means Goodbye, Australia on the 1st at 8am.

*Luke’s suburb
Editing Note: Been busy since getting back and had to wake up at 5am to edit this and have it out for 7. Please ignore typos, run-on sentences, and present-past conjugational inconsistencies.


  1. My birthday is October 10th. You'll never see me as a decrepit 31yo. Jeez. We're having a party because my friend has a pool and it's this Saturday so come back to Perth and you stay at my house for free and share my cab to the party and back and the alcohol is all being put on by my friend Garry who you will likely refer to as Scottish Garry and none of us will call you Canadian Phil (you'll just be Phil). It's to celebrate Ally coming home from America even though it's only been 6 weeks (she likes to celebrate things and I like to organise things). Don't go, jeez.

    1. You won't get to experience perth spring which beats the hell out of this nasty ass winter. Just bail when summer hits because omfg it's too humid for words. Actually you're a dude. You'll dig it because girls wear next to nothing. And I air con so I'm popular in summer. Garry is his house though so I don't know whose pool will be the hot spot just yet.

    2. You won't get to experience perth spring which beats the hell out of this nasty ass winter. Just bail when summer hits because omfg it's too humid for words. Actually you're a dude. You'll dig it because girls wear next to nothing. And I air con so I'm popular in summer. Garry is his house though so I don't know whose pool will be the hot spot just yet.