Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Treasure Hunt Through Melbourne

Mira remained groggy as she stepped out of the shower in the room she was staying in. Her eyes were puffy from lack of sleep, and from endless crying. All her excitement about her final day in Melbourne had dissipated after her call with Rahul yesterday. A month in Melbourne and all she had seen was her office headquarters and the hotel she stayed in. This was her day off work and she had finally decided to take a tour before she returned to India.

Last night's conversation brought unexpected tears to her eyes. He had said that her office trip to Melbourne was a blessing in disguise because he needed some time to think about their future. It came as a curve-ball to Mira who had no doubts that Rahul was 'The One' for her. Of course, she frequently chided him about his lack of romantic gestures, but she also knew that he was the more caring and stable one in their relationship. She had hoped that he would be excited about her return, but he merely sounded resigned when he told her that he needed time to think.

Mira tried dialling Rahul's number one more time and got the message that it was switched off. She heard the intercom ringing as she dropped her phone on bed dejectedly.  She picked up the phone and got the message that she had a parcel which was being sent up to her room.

“Parcel? I did not order anything”, Mira thought to herself as she collected the parcel. She opened the parcel to find a wooden box with detailed carvings on the outside. She opened the box to find a single red rose and a note.

The note read “Mira, here’s a little adventure for you to remember your last day in Melbourne by. Visit Federation Square and enjoy the view, the shows and the crowds milling around. Walk into Cup of Truth and order your favorite Vanilla Latte and ask for Jono”

Mira looked from the rose to the note wondering what was going on.

“Who….? What???”, Mira thought, confused. Though she wanted to dismiss this as a silly prank, she felt the slightest twinge of excitement within her. She always enjoyed solving puzzles, and here was one that was begging to be solved.

She dressed quickly and walked out of the hotel determined to find out what the next clue would be. She reached Federation Square and immersed herself in the crowd. She enjoyed the band performance, the art displayed and felt herself feeling better than she did in the morning.



She slipped into The Ian Potter Centre and checked the souvenirs on display.  She placed back the souvenir she picked up; it wasn't needed anymore. She felt her excitement dampened but cheered herself up. She followed the instructions and walked into the cafĂ© specified in the note.



 She joined the queue to pick up her coffee. As she reached the counter, Mira asked for Jono as the note instructed. She found a pleasant looking woman approaching her.

“Hey, what’s up?”

“Hi, I was asked to look for Jono…umm, my name is Mira….”

“So you’re the lucky girl. Here you go…Don’t worry about the bill, it’s been taken care of”, Jono handed over the latte along with another red rose with a note wrapped around it and winked at Mira.
Mira unwrapped the note and read through it in a hurry.

“Now that you've had your morning coffee, jump onto the city tram and enjoy the ride. The note included a picture of the City Circle Tram, maroon and green colored with yellow and golden borders, reminiscent of the Harry Potter train, and the train schedule.



Mira walked to the boarding point and waited for the next tram to board. She boarded the tram and found herself seated next to a few tourists who were as excited as she was about the adventure she was on. She spoke to them while trying to run through her friends list to identify who could be the mastermind behind this adventure she was on.

Mira was lost in thoughts when she felt something being flung into her lap. As she looked down, she found a pouch lying there with a red rose peeking through the opening. She looked around to find out who had dropped it off but the tram was packed. She opened the pouch and pulled out the rose. A note fell out and she picked it up. The note read….”If you’ve had your fill of the tram trip, how about a little shopping. Step off the tram and go to Queen Victoria Market. Go visit Madame Pompadour.”



Mira smiled involuntarily as she read the note. Someone knew her real well. She got off the tram with directions to Queen Victoria Market and skipped her way there. She walked in and found stalls and stalls of anything and everything she could imagine.  Mira had a quick lunch of pizza before starting with her shopping expedition.

 She picked up things that caught her fancy which included everything from cheese to candy to souvenirs, before she walked into Madame Pompadour. Mira was awestruck by the collection of everything frilly, feminine and fantastic in the shop. As she browsed through the collections, a petite lady walked up to Mira with a box with a red rose placed on top and handed it over to her.
“This is for you, love”, she said while handing it over to Mira.



Mira had expected another note from the shop but not a gift. She opened the box to find a beautiful  pink floral dress with a note placed on top.

“Mira, meet me at Eureka Skydeck 88 in this dress at 6:00 PM.” There was an admission ticket in the box along with the dress.

Mira checked the time and found that it was 4:30 PM already. She couldn’t wait till she got back to her hotel and changed into the dress. She rushed out of the market and hailed the first taxi that she found empty and gave her hotel address. As soon as she reached her hotel, she tried on the dress and found that it fit her perfectly. It was like it had been stitched with her in mind.

Once she got ready, she waited impatiently for her watch to touch 5:30 pm. As soon as it did, she walked out and waited for a taxi to take her to Eureka Skydeck.



She reached Skydeck at 4:50 pm and stepped into the Skydeck with bated breath. She looked all around and could see couples, families and other single tourists walking around, taking in the view of Melbourne’s CBD, Docklands and Yarra river. She felt a tug at the hem of her dress and turned around excitedly.

A small girl of about nine years was standing smiling.

“This can’t be right…Who is she?”, Mira started wondering if it was all a prank when the girl handed over a red rose to her and ran off to join her family with a giggle. Mira checked and saw that the red rose came with yet another note.

“A few more minutes before we meet. Please step into ‘The Edge’ and wait for me. There was yet another admission ticket to The Edge box. Mira couldn’t wait any more and so, walked into ‘The Edge’ box.



 She was entranced by what she saw. She could see the darkening sky, the lanes and roads, with the lights being turned on. She could see the sun setting and the golden, pink and blue hues that appeared to be decorating the sky. She heard someone clearing their throat behind her and turned around.

Mira stay frozen for a few moments before she realized what was going on. Rahul was standing behind her with a note in his outstretched hand. His face had a curious mix of nervousness, amusement and joy and he appeared to be watching her intently. He extended his hand and there it was, a neatly folded note.

Mira walked close to him and plucked the note out of his hand. She unfolded the note and read…

“Will You Marry Me?”

As she looked up from the note, there Rahul was, on his knee, with a ring box in his hand.
Mira nodded yes as tears rolled down her cheeks. Rahul quickly stood up and walked towards her. He gathered her in his arms and hugged her tight before slipping the ring onto her finger.
“I’m sorry for what I said….will you forgive me?”

 “I’ll consider it”, she replied as she swatted him lightly and sniffed and giggled at the same time. Rahul walked her out of The Edge cube. They walked silently to the Edge shop where he collected the souvenir photos which showed every frame of the proposal.

“Mira….am I forgiven, truly? I am so sorry for hurting you…”, Rahul said sheepishly.

“Yes you are forgiven….”, Mira smiled.

“Then will you forgive me if I told that I spoke to your manager without your knowledge and asked for a week’s vacation so that we can explore Melbourne together?”

“You did what? And Gautam agreed?”, Mira asked incredulously and got a shrug in reply.
“You know what, I take back my words. You are not just romantic but crazy….my type of crazy”, she whispered into Rahul’s ears as she hugged him tight, thinking about all the adventures they were about to go on in Melbourne.

This post was written as a part of “What’s your reason for falling in love with Melbourne” contest held by Indiblogger. Please visit the below link to know about the different activities to indulge in while in Melbourne:


Here is a sneak peek of the video that tells you how to come alive in Melbourne:


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Here’s a chance for the readers of this post to win some goodies. Tell me which of these places you would want to visit in Melbourne and why.  The best answer stands to win a voucher. Hurry up and send in your answers by January 4th, 2015.


12 comments:

  1. Great post! After reading your post & watching all the videos, I'd most like to visit the Dandenong Ranges for it's scenic beauty, breathtaking view and cool breeze blowing through my hair. :P I'd give anything away for driving through the winding roads which are present throughout the ranges. I'd love to stay at one of the bed and breakfast cottages and go on frequent excursions in the forests with my camera which provides excellent views. And not to forget the famous ride in the Puffing Billy, a day reserved especially for that. To add to that, there are also several picnic spots for me and my friends to spend a fun-filled day and the ranges are a perfect spot for hiking and cycling.

    Wish you and your blog a happy new year! :D

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wonderful post and interesting videos that make me feel that
    Melbourne invites the eternal romantic in me to hold hands with my beloved and go see the Twelve Apostles .Go on long drives on the great ocean road. In the middle of nowhere in a vineyard spread a table and enjoy a meal and a glass of wine with my dear one. Enjoy the sunsets holding hands and do lots of shopping at the Queen Victoria Market and see all the graffiti being created at the hosier lane.
    Great Post and interesting videos watching them I am sure to visit Sovereign Hill for spending some time in the era gone by. The lure of gold and panning for some nuggets is a temptation that is too much to resist. After I have found the gold I am bound to celebrate it with some wine so I will visit the vineyards and enjoy some great wine from the Yarra region .Visit the Pannys Phillip Island Chocolate Factory and have my fill with this yummy delight.
    therisingstarz.blogspot.in/2014/12/melbourne-selfie-capital-of-australia.html
    http://goo.gl/ByJqvP
    therisingstarz.blogspot.in
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    ReplyDelete
  3. Interesting Post
    After reading your post and watching all the videos
    I feel I have stepped into a kaleidoscope called Melbourne
    Where Vistas of experiences would unfold one after another
    The nature lover in me is enticed by the thought of watching the penguin parade.
    Traveling though the great ocean road, soaking up the freshness as the breeze ruffles my hair gets me in the mood to pack my bags for Melbourne.
    But before I can move ,Puffing Billy whistles and invites me for a ride. The kid in me jumps with joy at the thought of visiting Pannys Phillip Island Chocolate Factory
    Even before I can deside on the list of places that I would like to see in and around Melbourne.
    What’s that noise that I hear ?
    Oh its loud cheer from MCG as the cricket world cup 2015 is about to kick start.
    So many plces to see and so much to do.
    I am thetimetraveler ( http://goo.gl/wdXDzu ) and I have decided … Melbourne here I come ( http://goo.gl/RvUCQf ).

    ReplyDelete
  4. MCG, the Australian mecca for cricket lovers. I would definitely like to be in Australia when either Indian team or the English team happens to be on tour, the nest time. WIll be a memorable experience to watch the rivalry unfold right in front of my eyes, sitting right in the middle of MCG.
    - Ranjith (http://www.alightheartedtalk.com)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Melbourne is really so amazing that it's tough to chose one place! I would love to visit the Yarra valley with all its delicious wine tastings, rolling hills and natural beauty! Thanks for sharing so many lovely things about Melbourne and helping me virtually travel there.. loved your post thoroughly :)

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  6. I would love to visit St. Kilda beach in Melbourne and also enjoy watching the Penguin parade there..The serene beauty of the beach coupled with watching the cute penguins in their natural surroundings is sure to make my visit a memorable one! Ofcourse I am going to carry a camera and click lots of pictures to capture all the happy moments there :)

    Nikita @Njkinny's World of Books & Stuff

    ReplyDelete
  7. I would love to visit St. Kilda beach in Melbourne and also enjoy watching the Penguin parade there..The serene beauty of the beach coupled with watching the cute penguins in their natural surroundings is sure to make my visit a memorable one! Ofcourse I am going to carry a camera and click lots of pictures to capture all the happy moments there :)

    -Nikita @Njkinny's World of Books & Stuff

    ReplyDelete

  8. Being a person who loves to travel this place has struck my eye.
    And here, Eureka Skydeck 88 is going to be first on my list.. i can just imagine the view after reading about it and i feel its going to be awesome.
    Then the St. Kilda Beach,the long walk on the beach during the sunset will be just perfect.. And finding gold is also there.. :D
    why not get my pockets filled with some tresure hunt..Laneways and Arcades is going to be the place to explore my "Lara croft" skills.. :D :D
    Melbourne is going to be a great place to visit and enjoy a holiday..

    ReplyDelete
  9. All the best for the contest! :-)
    As for answering your question, I would love to visit the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Being a cricket enthusiast, I don’t think I would getter a better thrill in Australia than watching a Boxing Day Test Match live at the MCG. The Australian cricket fans are very hostile towards opposition players but are the first to appreciate a good player. I would want to sit amongst the 100,000 fans and cheer for my team. It would be even better if I got a seat next to Anushka Sharma so that if Virat Kohli scores a century and blows a kiss at her again, I would be on TV :-D
    www.ryanfernandes.wordpress.com

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  10. Hey ,Superb post ,so all set to pack bags to have a thrill at Melbourne…Now being high on my wish list:)U’ve very well covered "the best of Melbourne" & for the entry in contest ,there cannot ever be a single place for me..It has to be a bouquet of places to feel calm down my zest to explore it..So naming ,first comes the Great Ocean road not just to linger or have a decent walk but to amaze myself with Jetskiing ,Scuba diving & to try swim with Dolphins & seal! Yay ! these b’ful creatures would be lucky to share a swim with me;) .Then it would be "Eureka Sky deck, to have an awe inspiring experience to be closest to sky & get the sky deck view of this liveable city & MCG to watch & cheer the players on one of the worlds best cricket ground!

    Wishing u Best of Luck & a great year ahead!!

    Visit my blog@ http://jhilmilbhansali.wordpress.com/2014/12/30/a-date-for-life-timea-date-with-nature-wildlife-art-cuisine-ah-melbourne/

    ReplyDelete
  11. Nice post! I would definitely want to visit all those amazing places when I get to visit Melbourne :) But of all, my top pick would be a visit to Yarra valley for a beautiful sunrise balloon flight. After seeing the video, I can't stop myself from dreaming a romantic magical flight above the scenic vineyards and watching the sunrise from up above! Throw in my favorite wine, I will doubly enjoy the ride sipping my glass and taking sensational selfies all the way :) Now I can't think of a better way of spending a vacation!!

    Next of course, cruising through the great ocean road in a open-top car to enjoy the coastal scenery and the iconic 12 apostles for the nature's amazing work at play. Then a ride around the city in the vintage trams to enjoy its urban splendor and the legendary puffing billy to enjoy its natural splendor. Finally a day at the hot springs to unwind and totally rejuvenate myself :)

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  12. Hi
    My email id is hemmma09@gmail.com
    in case you decide me as a winner

    ReplyDelete

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