I left home very early in the morning, and we drove to the airport while the sun was very low in the sky. Leaving was difficult; the hardest part is always saying goodbye. But I become businesslike in airports, always checking, double checking; nothing can be left to chance. When you’re as easily distracted as I am, you’d lose a lot of money on lost flights if you didn’t adopt this approach! The flight was less painful than I expected; 24 hours including two brief stopovers, but it’s easy to pass that time when you’re fuelled by excitement and distracted by movies and plasticky meals.
I didn’t draw much at the start. I was busy and distracted by the novel, slightly terrifying concept that I was about as far from my home and family in the UK as I could possibly get. My first stop was in Melbourne, Australia; I stayed a few days, in theory to recover from the jetlag that never materialised. But oh boy, I made up for the lack of drawing by taking endless photos! My favourite subject, other than the skyscrapers, teetering and narrow like shards of glass, was the cities botantical gardens, spanning most of the half-hour walk between the CBD and my hotel in South Yarra.
Otherwise, I don’t think I really fell for the city. Compared to home it seemed spread out and too quiet, and much colder than I had anticipated (It’s Australia! What kind of Brit gets cold in Australia?!). I was alone, tired and seemingly endlessly cold or lost, and I was excited to get to my next stop; the city I was born in.