Dear Melbourne,

I love you. I love your secret streets and bookshops and markets. I love your scarves and boots and beanies. I love your wood fires and red wine and hot chocolates. I hate your water temperature.

Love from Catherine.

For my Aussie followers not safely embraced by Queensland’s warm hugs, here is a rant about Winter, and some ways in which to get through that cold, city shadow, white huff season.

1. Document your travels: Winter is the perfect time to document your adventures in an album. If you fancy a coffee-table-style book, snapfish.com.au is among many who make creating a professional looking album with your photos easy. Alternatively, the more rustic cut and paste style mementos also work well, and you can add your tickets and postcards too to keep everything together. Get creative!

2. Work hard: Now is the time to work hard. If you aren’t chasing Summer around the globe this year, then get busy saving money now, and leave Summer free to spend on diving!

3. Play games: I rarely play console games, but when I do, it is usually during winter. This is because first person adventure games are a fun way to live a fantasy. The graphics these days are also so beautifully realistic that finding ruins and exploring exotic locales is all the more fun. Nerdy, but fun.

4. Discover new activities: The beach has many other activities that can inspire ocean-minded people. I recently discovered that sea-glass is a ‘thing’ (search it on instagram… you’ll be amazed). I set out to find some on the tideline, adamant that I had never seen such a thing, and was gratified by the few smooth colourful treasures that I did find. What’s more interesting is the history that can be attached to said pieces of what is essentially rubbish. Rockpool rambles are another way to get your sea life fix. And supping or kayaking are other ways of keeping dry while getting active.

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(Pic: Seaglass finds!)

 

5. Plan the next trip: Butchers paper – check. Textas – check. Woodfire – check. Big cuppa tea – check. (Okay let’s be honest, it’s a glass of wine and a laptop). Research and PLAN! Reading copious amounts of dive fiction also falls into this category :)

6. Eat: Consider your duty this season to eat everything. Taste new things, go out, sample at markets, attempt inspired cooking. Finally, when it comes time to dive, your new extra layer of fat will keep you warm. Especially in Port Phillip Bay…

 

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(Pic: Dream desk, from the new Tomb Raider game. Maps, diaries and coordinates = adventure!)