I think it's worth having a little blurb about the hostel that was our home for 3 and a half months. When we were in Melbourne for the first time we stayed at a different Bev'n'Micks, it was directly across from the Victoria Market and was conveniently nicknamed 'the Vic'. It was nice enough, full of Irish lads but it was full once we returned from our friend Ben Kemp's birthday for the Easter week-end in April. So they guided us towards another Bev'n'Micks hostel just down the road and around the corner (aka McMahon's Bev'n'Micks to differentiate between the two). We were quite happy in our new home hence the reason why we never felt the need to relocate. You just couldn't find a better deal than $80/week each for a bed and utilities and the fact that we kept getting rejected for rentals added to the equation of staying put.
So we shacked up in a dorm called 'London Bridge' that was branched off of another room with 6 beds, our room had to be accessed through the other room and ours only had 5 beds. Most of these went unused until the last 2 months of our stay, then our room became the popular one that everyone wanted to be in. This may or may not have had to do with the fact that one of our new roommates brought a tv with him and we subsequently bought a cheap DVD player.... :)
The hostel was loaded with British, Irish and a few Europeans thrown into the mix. We only met 2 other Canadians there during our entire stay, and a few Americans as well. In the end there was quite a lot of drama including people getting thrown out for ripping a door off it's hinges, and another one punched an employee (who was about 50 years old) while his father punched the bartender who tried to break up the fight. Luckily Tyler and I had a knack for either being away or asleep on the nights that these incidents happened.
There were lots of theme nights in the hostel included an 'big kid party' where everyone was wearing face paint, playing with balloons and playing kid games like Twister, hot potato (or 'pass the parcel' as they call it here), musical chairs and frozen statues. We also had a 'twins party' where pairs of people tried to dress in matching clothes, Tyler actually had two twins for the night, he switched outfits half-way through when his second twin was finished work and got back to the hostel around midnight.
The hostel also had:
Monday night = movie night
Wednesday night = pool competition (winner wins bar tab)
Thursday night = quiz night (winning team splits bar tab)
Sunday mid-day = poker competition (winner wins bar tab)
It was a very nice set up. There was a chef who came to the hostel mid-way through and once a week he would make a big meal of which we would pay around $7.00 each for supplies and we would have a huge, home-cooked meal. He was very talented, although we learned that the Brits and Irish love their salt - yikes!
We had some fun day trips with some of the hostel peeps as well included the Great Ocean Road trip, where it rained most of the time but we still saw some good sights. We were able to see London Bridge before it collapsed for good about 4 days later. Pretty nice coincidence. And most of us came down with the flu shortly after the trip because of the weather conditions, but it wasn't swine flu - hurray! And we shared it with everyone else in the hostel, we thought we were going to be quarantined!
We also went to Phillip Island which is known for its population of 'little penguins', they used to be called 'fairy penguins' but the term was considered offensive and they changed it. You had to pay $20 to get in and watch the Penguin Parade, they all come ashore after 2 weeks of feeding in the ocean and return to their burroughs. Very cute to watch and they are so vocal, they all fight over the burroughs and try to navigate their way around the sand hills. You can also see them for free if you just walk through the parking lot and on one of the trails down to one of the non-marked off parts of the beach. A few of the people in the group discovered this, I was jealous since I paid the $20 but at least we know for next time. Tyler didn't get to go because he had to work, sad day for him.
And now our time in Melbourne is done. We had lots of good times, met some great people but since my contract at work finished on July 17th and Tyler wasn't getting a lot of hours at his internet cafe, we decided to do some more travelling since we were in one place for so long. We're currently in Tasmania at the moment, enjoying a change of scene and happy to be done work at least for a little while. Hurray for travel mode! :)