Making friends in Melbourne
July 25, 2010 7:33 PM Subscribe
I'm an American guy in my mid-late twenties living in Melbourne, Australia for (at least) the next eight months. My social life was quite exciting when I first moved here during late summer, but lately it feels a bit stagnant at times. I'm looking for ideas of activities to get involved with, to make use of my free time and help me connect with new people (friends of both sexes, plus THE LADIES).
posted by adamk to human relations (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
There are quite a few AskMe posts about meeting people in general, but I was hoping that some people could give advice unique to Melbourne, or dealing with living internationally.
My current social circle consists of a few Americans I met randomly while over here, a few local drinking buddies, and my four local housemates here in Fitzroy. Lovely people, but it would be great to make some more Australian friends through common interests and shared activities.
I go out a lot to pubs/clubs/etc, and MEETING random people is easy, it just doesn't usually lead to much -- for instance I go on a lot of first dates, don't feel much of a connection, and usually don't feel like arranging second dates. I have met a few good folks through random chance at the pubs, but it doesn't seem like a sustainable method for building a friend base. Or perhaps I'm just going to the wrong places.
My accent is the probably biggest double edge sword for me in social situations: I can walk up to a group of people and say almost anything, and someone in the group will say "WAIIIIT, where are you from?". Next comes a conversation about the differences between Melbourne and Los Angeles, and whether I like it here. If I change the subject to something more interesting for me, it'll often be interrupted by a question about how many celebrities I've seen in LA, or if I've been to any of the places shown on Entourage. The more I travel, the more this seems to be the global conversational response to "I've been drinking and someone from Los Angeles is talking to me!"
Things felt better back when the weather was warmer, but maybe that's just in my head. At least it should be warming up in the next few months!
Some more factoids:
I work as a freelance software consultant, and I do a lot of working from home, cafes, etc. I occasionally go into offices to meet with clients, but it's mainly business, and I'm never around long enough to make work buddies. One plus: my schedule is highly flexible during the week, which makes it easy to fit random weekday activities into my life.
I'm heavily involved with improvised comedy, and take classes a few nights a week. The improv stuff I know from Los Angeles isn't taught here, so I'm in the process of starting up my own improv workshop to share it with the locals. This is the most promising thing I have going on, but the people I'm meeting are much older/younger.
I love the local live indie music scene. I'm usually at a gig or two every week. I play guitar, but don't have one here.
I've joined a few interest groups on Meetup.com but haven't been to any events yet.
I'm into running and weight-lifting but I've never played an organized sport, although I'm not against the idea.
I love smart, passionate, artistic people who do interesting things with their lives. And cute hipster girls.