I am writing this from Mornington Peninsula, on my second daytime-beer, after spending a few hours in hot water. My brain is warm and mushy after being marinated it in caffeine and alcohol and minerals, just like how our forebearers used to live. What will we blog about today? Who knows. Let’s just talk and see what happens!
A few weeks ago Julia messaged to ask if I wanted to come stay in an Air BNB and relax for two days, and I looked at my calendar, and then I said yes. This is the most wonderful thing about being an adult with means. You can just go do things. You can have two breakfasts. You can drive somewhere and pay someone and then stay in their house. You can buy a bag of Doritos just in case, just to have. This is a real life example. Right now I have a bag of Doritos, just in case. It’s Cheese Supreme. I could open it right now and eat some if I wanted. Isn’t life wonderful?!
We drove down last night. Julia played pop songs from five years ago which is exactly my favourite genre, and she sang them all properly. You haven’t lived until you’ve heard someone who’s had singing lessons deliver the line “so la da da dee, we like to party, dancing with molly…”.
Side note, she’s sitting next to me as I write this, and so I just asked her if she was professionally trained. You know, for the veracity of this “piece”. She groaned and said “what are you WRITING, this is why I shouldn’t have come away with you”. I said I’d let her sign it off before “publication”, but she just waved her hand around saying she was sure it was fine, so there you go. A source has confirmed the claims made in this article.
This morning we went to the Peninsula Hot Springs to relax. There are like, 45 pools there, endless little spots in which to dip, dotted up a gentle hill walk. Maybe not quite 45 pools. But it did feel like there were endless options. Little pools, big pools, hotter pools, cooler pools, pools with caves, pools with fountains, pools full of rowdy 20-somethings, pools full of pale men in rash vests. There’s something so vulnerable about a man in a rash vest. It makes me want to take care of them. Yikes. I think I’m due for a therapy session.
We had to book two weeks in advance for the springs, and even then, the only option left was 8:30am. Anyone who’s anyone on the peninsula is at these springs. And it ain’t cheap. You pay to get in, then you pay to rent a towel, and you pay to rent a locker, and you pay to rent robes. I mean, you don’t have to pay for all those things. But what were we supposed to do, wander from pool to pool with just our togs on, like peasants? No. So we paid an extra $30 for towelling on top of our entry fee. Written down this seems insane. I am going to open my own bloody hot springs. Water that comes from the ground?! Money for TOWELS?! It’s a goldmine!
I lasted probably four minutes in each pool before deciding I was too hot and abruptly announcing I was done and getting out. Then I’d feel too cold and would need to get in another pool. Is it possible that some people are more sensitive to heat than average? Or am I just a fussy princess? Don’t answer that.
I was even more annoying in the Turkish hammam. Have you ever been inside one of these?! I always saw saunas in the movies and thought, that must feel so nice, all that warm hot air. But the warm hot air doesn’t just surround you, you have to breathe it in. As I got in there I thought I was going to die. I wanted a space helmet to breathe. I felt like I was being choked from the inside. I sat and wondered what would happen if I passed out. Would Julia have the upper body strength to throw me over her shoulder and carry me out, superhero style? Then I remembered us sharing bench press stats earlier (“oh god, I mean, with dumbbells, probably 10kg in each hand, but it’s been a while”). I considered just how much, much, more than 20kg I weighed, and I left.
The springs also have plunge pools, little wells in the ground where you tip yourself into cold water for a little boost. “Immune system!” yelled Julia, “circulation!”, “reduce inflammation!”, as she plunged into these holes in the earth. Instead of doing that, I stood under a warm waterfall, giggling that it was like being peed on by a giant.
I eventually gave in and had a go, after she said “it’s just like the ocean” and I felt duty-bound as a water sign to connect with the sea on an emotional level. I’ll do anything if I believe in the narrative, even if it’s completely illogically bonkers. Wow. Definitely need that therapy session.
After the springs we went for brunch and chatted about work, men, and how the perfect mug should have a bigger base so you can cuddle it in your hand. We also talked about my two competing dreams. The first is that I am very busy and important, and I have a signature lip colour, and I wear cashmere capes and carry papers. People bring me things to sign and I hold my phone between my ear and my shoulder and sign them while smiling and also making decisions. Oh god, so many things at once! Maybe I have a golden pen that’s engraved with my initials? A gift from a very rich friend who I don’t like for their money, but their dry wit, or something. Because even though I am very rich and powerful I am also humble.
I mean, I say I’m humble in this fantasy, but I’m also dressed entirely in cashmere and fancy linens. I have Meryl Streep’s hair in Devil Wears Prada, too. Julia asked what my job would be, but I felt that was irrelevant. I make decisions quickly and people respect me but I am kind and fair. When a profile about me comes out in the paper, teenage girls tweet it and say #goals.
The other dream is that I’d love to live in a house almost on the beach, a little cottage on stilts. Every room would have soft furnishings. Every chair would have a cushion AND a throw rug, and would be lit with soft lamps. There’d be guest slippers. Are guest slippers a thing? Well, they’d be a thing at my place. I’d want every room to feel like a soft cloud, like if you fell down something would cushion your fall. People would float through the house on their guest slippers and you’d hear the ocean crashing, always. I’d be old, I think, with wild hair that would point in all directions. At night I’d dash down to the water and skinny dip. The teenagers of the area would call me some cute name, like “That Crazy Old Lady with the Saggy Titties who Howls at the Moon”, or similar.
I thought maybe Mornington would be a good place to set up my stilts. But we got here and it wasn’t right. We walked past a few bars last night and I immediately picked out some people who I decided would be enemies. That woman, the blonde one; I’d be avoiding her at the gym. That guy, the one wearing his sunglasses on his forehead, I’d fake a sickie to get out of his birthday BBQ. Everyone is white and old and wear pants that end somewhere on the shin. Don’t get me wrong, I love the occasional old white shin pants wearer, but it’s like, salted caramel profiteroles. If it’s all you’ve got, you get over it quick.
Side note – did you know Coles sells salted caramel profiteroles? I know this. I ate maybe twelve last night, while drinking a bottle of cheap rose, and watching Bad Moms. I felt like Cleopatra. I loved every second of it.
And now – I’m in a dress with pyjama pants on underneath, a cozy rug over my feet, anything that Netflix declares a “goofy comedy” in the background. Furphys in the fridge. Nowhere to be. Absolute bliss. I love being an adult with means. Just gotta decide on what hairdo is leading my future, and I’ll be set.
2 thoughts on “Travel Diary from the Mornington Peninsula”
Oh the Mornington Peninsula! Years ago, when I was leaving Melbourne after living there for a year I couldn’t deal and instead of partying with my friends on my very last weekend I ran away to the peninsula. And it was marvelous! You can go diving with SEAHORSES!