Does anything get Melbourne foodies as excited as the annual food and wine festival? Probably not. But as I sit on a plane flying to Brisbane, in the process missing the much-hyped hawker street market, I can't help but feel on the outer.
Every year my full-time job, the one that funds this food obsession, seems to get in the way. This festival sees me travel to Sydney from 13-14 March for a friend's wedding, followed by a work trip from 16-17 March. I get a quick respite over the weekend then it's off to a week-long, residential management course.
Shouldn't the entire world stop during Melbourne's food and wine fest?
Melbourne hardly leads by example, packing a multitude of festivals into one little March. We've seen the madness of Moomba parade past and launch into the yarra and we're currently enjoying worldly flavours and washing it all down with wine. Some of you may even be wishing you hadn't indulged quite so much as you squeeze into the latest trend to attend the concurrent Melbourne Fashion Festival.
Once those obsessions wrap-up we can laugh our abs back into shape at the Melbourne comedy festival. But wait, want to know how to grow all the fabulous produce you enjoyed? If you miss the Metlink Edible Garden you can head along to the International Flower & Garden show or, in stark contrast, continue your decadence at the Australian Grand Prix.
Its no wonder we're all go, go, go. Its a callenge to juggle day-to-day commitments for some, throw a "what's on" calendar at people and the city is upside down with sensory overload. The Victorian Government's attempts to bring people to Melbourne yield polarised opinions due to taxpayer funding but there's no doubt such events add to the diversity of our city. I wonder if we'd have such a vibrant food scene without the help of festivals, events and celebrations which make the city such a popular place. I'm sure it'd have some impact.
So, I have 3 days to enjoy the festival and I'd better pack as much in as possible. I sometimes find the plethora of available options overwhelming and I always miss out on tickets to hot features. It certainly doesn't help that I'm reluctant to buy tickets too far out incase I need to travel. Although that attitude is clearly justified.
To all of you who are going to many events, right down to those attending just one, enjoy!