liv: A woman with a long plait drinks a cup of tea (teapot)
[personal profile] liv
[livejournal.com profile] ghoti asked: could you tell us about your favourite places outside the UK?

This is going to be brief, cos it's ended up on a Friday and I never have more than half an hour spare on Fridays. I've been to plenty of beautiful and historic places, but I put a much higher priority on visiting friends than on being a tourist. So I'm most likely to get excited about the home town of someone I love, especially when it's far away enough that I probably wouldn't have the time and energy to go there except to visit them. I think the top two in that category are Melbourne in Australia, and Montréal in Canada.

Neither really has the kind of must-see tourist destinations that the most beautiful old-world cities have, nothing to compare with Paris or Florence or Jerusalem. But they are places I could imagine myself living, not just ticking the sights off my bucket list. They are big cities with plenty going on culturally, but feel much more spacious and less crowded than London or New York. Partly because they're less densely populated in a literal sense, but partly because they have sensible public transport infrastructure and a somewhat European-like café culture, you don't feel like everybody's constantly in a hurry and shoving you out of the way. I love that they're multicultural and don't seem, at least to my visitor's eyes, horribly segregated by race or economics. Both have an amazing range of really good food available.

I mean, the climate is hopeless, Melbourne regularly has summer temperatures above 40°C and Montréal has several months of unbearable humidity and winters that are terrifying even to someone who lived in Sweden. But basically everywhere that isn't the UK has a worse climate than the UK. And I love the mix of new world and imported European flora. Melbourne just smells amazing!

The main reason I love Melbourne is that my very good friend MK lives there, as does my mother's brother, with their respective families. And likewise I love Montréal because [livejournal.com profile] rysmiel lives there, and I have had the most amazing visits with them. And just last year [personal profile] hatam_soferet moved there too so now I love it even more!

[December Days masterpost]

(no subject)

Date: 2014-12-12 05:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ghoti.livejournal.com
One year I will make it to Montreal.

places I could imagine myself living, not just ticking the sights off my bucket list

I find this a fascinating comment, mostly because for me, the only place I normally describe as 'a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there' is Cambridge (although I'm coming round to the idea).
I mean, I wouldn't want to live in Paris, and it definitely has things in it which I think are worth seeing, but I rarely describe Paris as 'a nice place to visit'. OTOH, I fell deeply in love with Oslo at first sight, and often recommend it as a destination, but would be entirely happy to move there, even if we sensibly said 'it might not be forever'.

(no subject)

Date: 2014-12-13 12:03 am (UTC)
hatam_soferet: (Default)
From: [personal profile] hatam_soferet
Hahah, that's really funny, because it's been pretty nice this week all things considered, temp hovering around -1 and rather pretty snoo, and I've been saying how I like this much better than the UK's endless damp chilly rain at this time of year :)

And the humidity is not bad really. You use a fan.

(no subject)

Date: 2014-12-13 03:49 am (UTC)
lilacsigil: 12 Apostles rocks, text "Rock On" (12 Apostles)
From: [personal profile] lilacsigil
Melbourne has pretty great weather except in summer! It's a lot more economically segregated than you'd think by visiting the city, because while there's very rich and very poor people in the centre where the public transport is excellent, there's huge sprawling suburbs with average to non-existent public transport all around that.

(no subject)

Date: 2014-12-13 04:13 am (UTC)
jae: (ukgecko)
From: [personal profile] jae
But basically everywhere that isn't the UK has a worse climate than the UK.

This amused me because the climate is pretty much the ONLY reason I wouldn't want to live in the UK full-time. I could get used to the milder highs and lows quite easily, but all the rain would KILL me in the long run.

-J

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