Tuesday, October 9, 2012

ProBlogger Training Event 2012 has me heading south again

There's three sleeps until I fly to Melbourne for the 2012 Problogger Training Event. I'm nervous and excited at the same time. Not only will I be going to Melbourne for the first time in years to learn more about blogging but I'll also be catching up with some old friends, as well as visiting a city that holds a very special place in my heart (cliche but true).

I'll never forget the night mum and dad took my sister Yolanda and me out for dinner and told us we were moving from Sydney to Melbourne. I was in year 10 and about to turn 16 and Yo was 13, going on 25.

It was such a pinnacle moment in our teenage lives. We'd lived in Sydney since I was two years old. Our family home in Newtown was a haven and I'd already changed school so many times (three nursery schools, four primary schools) that the last thing I wanted to do was to move to a new secondary school. For a kid that didn't make friends easily the thought of moving to an entirely new state was pretty bloody daunting, if not life shattering really.

Me: The year I moved to Melbourne
as a 15 year old

After spending most my primary school years with one or two good friends at a time, by 1990 I finally found myself in a group. These girls were great friends and we remained that way for years after I left Sydney - in fact I'm still friends with some of them. We were also hanging out with a group of boys which made that time very exciting indeed. Until of course I found out we were being moved away and had to start all over again.

Although both cities are in the same country (obviously) they really are very different. The rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne is well known. From my first day at my new school I was asked which city I prefered. Like I was going to switch my allegiance from Sydney within a three days of arriving south of the border. Yeah, right. All I'll say is both cities are great. They are different and each has their positives and negatives.

The transition actually went really smoothly for me. As far as I can remember anyway. I had to move down a year before my parents and my sister otherwise my senior years would be split between the New South Wales school system (Higher School Certificate) and the Victorian Certificate of Education. So off to boarding school I went.

Before you get images of dorm rooms and strict rules and regulations it was actually really fun. Just like one big long sleep over with all your mates. I was a really, really shy teenager so it was a massive challenge for me. I yearned for my family and friends back home. And of course, for Sydney. I wrote unsent letters to my parents about how sad and lonely I was. I drew maps of Newtown and of my home. Eventually I made friends. Good friends. It is hard not to when you live with a stack of girls 24/7. You got to talk to the kids around you sometime.

The year later the rest of the family moved down and I became a daygirl for my final year of high school. My sister struggled more with the move initially but it didn't take her long to get in with the cool crowd. She's always had a knack for that.

The move for my mother was probably the hardest. I won't go into details here. This is my story and I'll respect my parent's wishes that I keep it that way. Let's just say she moved back to Sydney at the first opportunity...

Together, our family lasted in Melbourne until 1995. My mum and sister moved back as soon as Yolanda completed her VCE and dad and I about six months later. We gave Melbourne our best but it wasn't meant to be forever. We are Sydney people when it comes down to it.

Unlike the rest of the family, and much to everyone's surprise, I moved back again in 1998. I relocated for love this time. That lasted two and a half years and even though my relationship ended and I came back to my hometown of Sydney, my fondness for Melbourne has never waned.

Which brings us to the present day: The 2012 ProBlogger Training Event has me flying south once more. And I couldn't be more excited! Not only will I be learning new stuff and meeting new people but I'm so excited about seeing some of my friends from high school. I'll also be catching up with a mate from the later period I was a resident.

This really is going to be one top week!

Much more on Melbourne and ProBlogger 2012 to come.



Mumabulous said...

Have a wonderful time at Pro Blogger. Melbourne is foodie heaven. The food in Sydney is great but Melbourne beats it.

Debbish said...

Looking forward to seeing you there!

bachelormum said...

That's quite a lot of change you've had but at least you can honestly say you understand the Sydney melbourne standoff - I'm a Sydney girl, and in my two times that I've been to melb. I loved it but not that much that I'd want to live there ... I'm too ich of an outdoors girl. Have a beautiful time there darling, learn lots and tell us all about it xx

The Babbling Bandit said...

Thanks for the best wishes. I know all about the food situation down there. Yum! But I'm doing Droptober and on a pretty strict diet. Eek! This weekend is going to be a really big challenge.

The Babbling Bandit said...

Looking forward to seeing you too!

The Babbling Bandit said...

Thank you! I could actually live in Melbourne again - for love or money (eg a good well paying job). But I'm a Sydney girl at heart too. I love this place.

Rachel @ TheKidsAreAllRight said...

I would have found moving at that age so difficult. I didn't move once until I left town for uni - couldn't wait to get out at that point! But we've thought about moving to another city or country for work, and moving my teen daughter is what holds us back.

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