Friday, October 30, 2015

In search of cafes for writing ( and good food too :)

The busyness of yesterday's Great Ocean Road tour did not allow time for pen and paper or rather, perhaps what is true is I did not put pen to paper because I chose feet, body in water, parrots eating out of my hands, curiosity peaking conversations, limestone formations to hike to, ...Today, Victoria market will not be seen by me,  I choose instead a continuation of the cafe's to write in tour, followed by time with a not yet met friend,  Amanda, Abby's sister. 

Off I go to CIBI which according to my Cafe tour inspiration is " the best Cafe in Melbourne, not only that, it is in Collingwood, an up and coming neighbourhood in Melbourne, according to the real estate ads. I find CIBI nestled in with warehouses  potters, artists, it is itself a warehouse, studio space.  I step into wide open spaces, an eclectic chair and table collection.  A welcoming space, for sfrollers, and walkers, for toddlers, wobbly legged crossing the floor with adults in action. 

A menu that is filled with options that include fruit and salad, this morning a savoury option wins.

A place of quiet corner space to write, more tea is offered.  I feel the invitation stay, as long as you wish, write, be here chose solitude, a respite from the busy storm of Melbourne city life,  I sit a while.
the best Cafe award in Melbourne understood, and now to try another. 

191 Smith Street calls, Cafe Rosamond,  here I come and on the way I pass the Collingwood gallery, the food co-op, a patagoni store with a winter sell off,  it is a slow meander down Smith Street, through Collingwood, until I find it, (noting first a missing number between boutique not yet open clothing shops) in a side door with Rosamond  graffitied by its door, along with other art work, like that found on Hosier street.  It is a hole in the wall,  with bar for ordering just inside the door and to the left some steps into a "small business big enough to support marriage equality" as the sign on the door indicates on rainbow parchment.  Breakfast already eaten, I resist the urge for croissant, Danish or vintage egg on toast and order tea,  shades of grey is served. A corner table beckons,  I sit and write awhile with tea, white pot and cup and saucer too.  Another best Cafe could be awarded here,  the friendliest award I think, I'd give.

I learn here that one side of Smith Street is Fitzroy, the other Collingwood.  Some writing done, a newspaper partially read and on to Brunswich street again,  no repeat Babka  visit but this time the goal to Alimentari.

I miss the number 251 and am called instead, inside another becoming space by sandwich board that reads "Zetta Cafe now open so stories can continue to be told,". Another heaven offered up to me,  fine stationary, cards, wax stamps for letter seals, calendars, notebooks, and pens and at the back a cafe spacious tables, open light, another one to add to cafes to write in, to be in...

A glance at time piece tells me that this leisurely Cafe morning is rushing to an end,  so off I go back track slightly to check out Alimentari, peak in the door to see a waiting crowd round take out counter with lunch time delights, and in the back a cozy space for eating in and writing, it is true.  No time for me to write there now. 

 I go on to meet Amanda now,  oh what a gift to meet this sister friend and see in her the eyes of light enthusiasm shared with Abby.  Her spirit engaged and open leads us to share a time that quickly passed, connection felt and shared, and then she said before I go, if you like tea I want to show you a tea room, it's just down here. 

How many heavens might there be  We step inside, senses awaken by the the sights, the smells, tea samples white and purple are offered up, beside a counter filled with bread and cakes and biscuits, as they call cookies here.  Open till six she says, I will return, and off we go my new acquaintance friend and I, a hug and then she's gone it's time to write again. 

Tea shops and cafes belong on different lists, my work is not yet done, to Melbourne I will must need to return,  I could use help,  any offers? 

gkn October. 2015


  1. I'd be willing to assist you with the canvassing of Melbourne -- perhaps I will offer a different tour, or at least an assistant for the delicacies of the savoury and iced variety. What say you, would you go back to the same places, or find new, most-excellent cafes and bakeries?!