If you’re a close friend or family member you will already know this, but for those of you who don’t, it was our 7 year anniversary on Thursday 18th August. So we thought we would let you know what we got up to in case you’re ever celebrating your anniversary in Melbourne. Now bear in mind that Natalie can’t take any credit for this as it was all Jordan’s idea – he’d planned it as a surprise!
As we were both working on the Thursday, we decided to celebrate our anniversary on the weekend after. So on Saturday 20th August we hopped on the train to Victoria Park and walked up the hill and then back down again to the Boathouse in Studley Park where we rented a small wooden row boat for an hour for $36 (and where Jordan popped the question! Yes we are engaged!!). The Boathouse location at the bottom of a hill in Studley Park along Yarra River and the trees and greenery simply encase you into a world surrounded by wildlife. It was lovely to be surrounded by nature – you genuinely could not tell you were just 10 minutes away from the city centre.
We were off to a ropey start as rowing with the heavy wooden ores proved harder than it looked. We were both in hysterics whilst the boat was going in zig zag motion or round and round in circles. Natalie stepped up to try the rowing as she didn’t believe it was as hard as Jordan was making out. Turns out it was. It was just so hard to get both the ores in the water at the same time and to move them in synchrony, especially where they were so heavy and kept coming out of the fixtures on the side of the boat. Safe to say Jordan was the row master by the end though – practice makes perfect. We had several greedy ducks following our boat for more of the bird feed we bought. FYI – the bird feed doesn’t float so you have to be pretty close to them so they can actually eat it before it sinks.
After an emotional and romantic time on the river (sorry if you cringe!), we rowed back to shore and had tea/coffee and scones with jam and cream from the Boathouse café and enjoyed the relaxing view. We then walked back to the train station to go back to the city centre for some drinks. We found this cool little back down Little Collins Street called Chuckle Park – it’s a small silver campervan that’s been turned into a bar/restaurant and parked down an alleyway. It’s got pretty jam jars with lights across the alleyway lighting the area where people can sit or stand and enjoy drinks or snacks. Jordan tucked into the pulled pork burger while Natalie enjoyed a glass of wine, and then we both enjoyed a huge cocktail pitcher. (We may have been a little tipsy early evening when we skyped our family telling them the good news!)
Jordan had sneakily booked dinner for that evening at a restaurant in Fitzroy called Hell of the North (if you’re a Game of Throne’s fan this name will amuse you). It was $65 per person (excluding drinks) for a six course meal in this modern French restaurant. The waitress asks you if you have any dietary requirements or if there is any food that you particularly don’t like and then they surprise you with each course that comes out. Our first course was pork belly (which was the best we’ve ever tasted!), then chicken liver parfait with toasted brioche, then gnocchi with artichoke puree and pear salad, duck cooked three ways with parmesan chips, a small cheese board, then finally a quince panna cotta. You may think it’s small portions to start with, but there’s so many courses and the food is so rich that you get full pretty quickly. It was all delicious and we were definitely in a food coma when we left!
That’s just a quick summery of what we got up to on our anniversary weekend. We’re so happy to say that we got engaged in one of our favourite cities in the world - Melbourne will forever have a special place in our hearts.