Living in Hobart

It’s 8:30 pm Sunday 6 Feb 2011 – the fourth day of Chinese New Year, The Rabbit Year. I told myself I better start writing, or I will never get around doing it, probably never again. Life in Hobart is busier for me, less time for me to write new post. It is not the same as when I was living in the rural country side, when time stood still. Life in Hobart is exciting. It is a nice slow pace. It is so easy. Too easy. This is what life should be.

There is so much to share. That is if you are interested to read on what’s happening in my life in the past couple of weeks. Where I have been. What I have been up to. It may bore you. But I hope not. So let me start here….

House chores is never ending. It is a necessary thing in our life. Part of our life. But if the other half shares the chores, then it is fine. But mine takes things for granted. So I do most of things around the house and garden! But I guess that is me. I was born to work hard. I was born in the year of the Ox. That is why I have no time to write a new post. Each time I started my MacBook, I went straight to check my Gmail, Yahoo, Facebook and some time Twitter, read online Penang news, see if there is any comments in my blog. Then I was too tired to even think about writing a new post.

But right now, I am determined. I have taken so many photos. I am not about to keep them to myself. Life experience is to share.

Each weekend, I told myself that I need to do things. Anything. Thus, my adventure begins in the past two weeks of new tastes, new sights, new sounds. Even if it means doing things alone, which I had my first on my own last Friday night. I decided to go for a movie at the State Cinema – a beautiful heritage building that has been screening movies since 1914. It is located in the main street of North Hobart, a well known restaurants and cafe strip in Hobart. This was the second time I have been to the State Cinema since we moved to Hobart. I love it – everything about it. It is small, private, smart with a friendly and sophisticated atmosphere. Great meeting place before or after the movie with a cup of coffee/tea or a glass of wine. Exposed sandstone brick walls add charm to the foyer/cafe rooms.

I went to see “Black Swan” at 8:15 pm. I called in advance to book a ticket for one. That was the first time I went to a movie on my own. I will come back to the movie later. But, first I had to eat something. I went to Ivory Cafe. I blog about this place in a previous post. I thought about Rita’s Bite. I hope she gets well soon. I had curry puffs and Pad Thai. As good as the first time I was there. Said hello to Chef Piya before I left. Donna was in her usual self. Teased me or actually gave me a hard time for going out on my own! Guess she has never heard of going out alone. I told her that I am actually enjoying myself. She was even more shocked when I told her that I was going to a movie after that. “Why?..” “…how come?” “why alone?” Sounds very strange to her.

Now back to the movie, “Black Swan”. It was a small cinema, number 2. Full house. I got my ticket half an hour before the show. Had a pot of lemongrass and ginger tea and read a movie magazine before making to cinema number 2. I was not sure what to expect of the movie. I didn’t read any review. All I knew was Nathalie Portman was nominated for Best Actress, and that there was a lesbian scene. I was on the edge of my seat all the time throughout the movie. Even at one scene I jumped from my seat with a soft shriek that gave the man next to me a good laugh. The movie was intoxicating. It had a tragic and self destructive story, at the same time powerful and absorbing. There was never a dull moment. It was sad, it was wonderful and triumph with performances well deserving an oscar for Nathalie Portman. I was still shivering at the end of the movie walking down a dark alley to my car.

On Saturday 5 Feb, I was busy with my garden. Planted more shrubs, more pruning and more mulching. The weather was not that great. We got a couple of DVDs to watch, and had a takeaway pizza from Paesano – a place that I wanted to try the previous weekend. But was fully booked. Next time, we will book a table in advance and dine there. It seems very popular with the locals living in the area.

Back to where I started on this post. Sunday 6 Feb. Time 9:30 pm. One hour later. Gheez…I can’t believe it is taking me this long to write. I was listening to a live opera concert playing on ABC FM, and the stereo is behind me. So not that difficult not to listen to the music and applause.

This morning was house chores again. This time was the bathroom. I kept telling myself that I need to give the floor to ceiling wall tiles and floor tiles a good wash after the renovation. One month later I have finally done it. They looked clean now. After labouring myself most of the morning, I told my partner that I would like to go out for lunch.

We went to North Hobart. It was so easy. Three minutes to drive there. No problem finding a parking space along one of the street. I wanted to eat at Piccolo, but it was shut. Looked at other restaurants and cafes. Solicit. Looked at the window lunch menu. Maybe next time. Walked back towards the city end. Came to Onba, directly across The Republic Bar. We had plan to watch a live concert at The Republic at 2:15 pm. We decided to have a light lunch at Onba.

Onba is located at the corner of Elizabeth Street and Burnett Street. It has a dark grey exterior paint on its wall, an outdoor seating at the back on Burnett Street. Earlier we parked our car just next to Onba on Burnett Street. It is that easy. Lunch at Onba, live concert across the road from our car at The Republic. Were else in a city can one find a parking next to the venue?

We walked in. It was not busy. We had several choices on where we like to seat, including upstairs with comfortable couches, and a private room. We walked upstairs, but decided to sit downstairs at the front section. That way, we can look outside at the street. We looked at the menu and the Specials on a blackboard.

I opted for a warm citrus salad with seafood of blue eye, scallops and prawns at $17. My partner went for a curry blue eye trevalla pie with chips and salad at $12. We were both happy with our food selection and best of all, we were happy with the taste of both dishes. It was reasonably priced. Actually very reasonable for the food. The menu has a long list of cocktails. But it was too early for a cocktail. I ordered a lemongrass and ginger tea.

We finished our lunch at 1:30 pm, which was a bit early for the live concert across the road. We decided to walk down the main street towards the city. It was a lovely day. Well, almost. It was a typical Hobart weather – quite cool when the sun was covered by thick clouds, then sunny and warm again. But we are indeed very blessed with such great weather in Hobart when other parts of Australia were going through cyclone and flood in Queensland, flood in Victoria, extreme heat over 40 celsius in Sydney, bushfire in Western Australia. Hobart’s summer has been mild in low to mid twenties, with only a few days of low thirties.

We came to an Antique Warehouse in this building. First time we have seen it. Interesting collections of furnitures, bric-a-brac and antiquities. If this building is in Sydney, it would have been bought by a developer and turned into an expensive apartment complex.

Back at The Republic.

My partner saw an advertisement on “The Roy Orbison Tribute Show” this morning in the Sunday Mercury. He asked me if I would like to go. I didn’t know who Roy Orbison was, until he told me some of his songs. There was a cover charge of $15 for the show. There was no door policy. Most of the customers in there probably would have got there earlier and have not paid. I wonder how they regulate the charge. I guess it depends on the honesty of the customers.

We got a seat 3 rows from the stage. It was a small venue, a very small stage with a 5 piece band, 2 backup female singers, and Athol Matcham – impersonating Roy Orbison. The show started on time at 2:15 pm with an opening song of “Crying”. Most of the songs Athol paid tribute to Roy Orbison were songs I remembered as my father’s favourites. I never knew those songs were sung by Roy Orbison. The show went on for 2 hours with a 15 minutes intermission. The second half had the crowd going. It was great fun. We had a great time. Best of all, our car was parked just across the bar and it took 3 minutes to get home! In the past, it took us an hour to drive home, which was why we hardly go out. Time has changed.



10 responses to “Living in Hobart

  1. Hi, Victor!

    โ€œKong Xi Fatt Chaiโ€.
    You live in an place full of characters and interesting events. The foods look so good there unlike where I am at. I get tire of burger, pizza, and steak. Maybe I need to explore a little more.

    Oh, I t notice you had lemongrass and ginger tea at two restaurants. It must be popular there. I have not heard or been to a place that serve it here. But I am going to make me a pot. Maybe it will help me get over this cold I had for the last 2 days.

    • Hey Dallas – Kong Xi to you and Mrs D as well.
      You and Mrs D cook well from what I see and read in your post. There is quite a tea culture here, aside from coffee culture. Make sure you add some good honey in your lemongrass and ginger tea for your cold. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. I am so jealous Victor that you and Steven got to see the Roy Orbison show. We were going to go as it’s mine and Phil’s wedding anniversary today but time got the better of us and we had hospital visits to do and the return home of an ill son from hospital so we missed out. So glad to have our boy home though. Thankyou so much for posting videos, at least I got to sort of see him.
    Phil and I also love North Hobart and most Sundays you will find us strolling around and usually lunching at the Republic.
    If you haven’t eaten there I urge you to.
    Try the duck spring rolls! Because we missed out I actually made one of their signature dishes for dinner last night, herb crusted chicken breast with a honey mustard sauce! And the best steaks in Hobart!

    • Christina – my partner initially suggested that we eat at the pub, but I am never a big fan of pub food. But from your description I must give it a try. I do that next time.
      Glad to hear that your son is back home and recovering well.

  3. Victor, I enjoy reading your post, and love looking at the photos from your part of town. I often go to the movie with Lee, but Bo often go by himself since many of the movies that he watches are too violent for Lee and I.

    If you have time, do share photo of your garden. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Sounds like you are settling into city life nicely Victor, and getting to see and eat all that Hobart has to offer. It is a great city.

    I wish I was born in the year of the Ox, I’d like to get more work done….but I’m a Monkey, I just like to eat bananas!

  5. The seafood salad looks so good…. especially reading it at dinner time. Makes me so hungry! Glad to hear that you are enjoying the city life.

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