Merry Christmas from Oz.

Just took an impromptu walking tour of Ivanhoe, an area of Melbourne where the folks get real merry about Christmas decor, American-style. Well, kind of; it’s a good effort.

The blue-ribbon light show, in my opinion:

Aussie class…

Snowmen? Reindeer? How about a Santa-hat wearing kangaroo?

Pretending it’s winter (though, it’s a freak summer and actually feels like winter…)

Since the weather’s been so crazy here, it hasn’t been much of a Christmas-culture shock (I was expecting Santa’s elves in bikinis). So essentially we went from Israeli winter-in-hiding to Aussie not-so-summer. Upside down, indeed.

Vote for Jerusalem as property on the Global Monopoly board.

Monopoly ManCheck this out from the makers of Monopoly:

Have your say in the world’s first global Monopoly!

I’m creating the world’s first global Monopoly so I want to know what your favourite cities are!

I’ve pre-selected 68 great cities for you to choose from but you can nominate any other city you want – these are known as Wildcard cities.

Vote for your top 10 cities… and keep voting every day!

The 20 pre-selected cities with the highest worldwide votes on February 29 2008 will make it onto the board. Plus, you will have from March 1 to March 9 2008 to vote on the most nominated Wildcard cities. Only the top two will make it on the board!

How fun is that? And whaddya know, Jerusalem is one of the choices. So are New York, Melbourne, Prague, Dublin, and a few of my other all-time favorite cities of the world. Can’t wait to own them all myself… and think of all the dividing Jerusalem jokes we can make!

Go ahead and vote now.

Nightlife for the good life.

Just got back from a tour of Melbournian weekend nightlife. My Aussie companions were pleased to see that I, the unhumble New Yorker, was quite impressed. In fact, I’d daresay it was full of the stuff I love about New York – and cities in general – and lacking the stuff I despise.

– Great transport system
– Clean
– Lit up (tastefully)
– Fun people walking the streets
– Diverse people walking the streets
– Lots to do – eat, drink, eat and drink, dance, chill, gamble, shop, walk around…
– Lots to see – water, light show, fire works, buildings, lighting, sidewalk paintings, movies, Little Italy, Chinatown…
– Relaxed, great pace, great attitude

…to name a few things. No city has impressed me this much at first glance and made itself seem livable. They say Sydney has it all but bigger and better. For now, this is enough for me.

melbourne nightlife melbourne night life