St Kilda. I never tire of you. The last time I was in Melbourne I volunteered at Lentil as Anything so I could be with you at least once a week. And I still came to see you on my days off.
I know you are getting trendy and the expensive shops and muliples are
moving cashing in. Yet you still have that edginess, more hippy than hipster. Pop Up Records may have closed, property prices have risen dramatically, but you are still holding on to the past through the cakes in Acland Street, satisfying those with a sweet tooth since 1934
and your edginess with your laneways of graffiti.
You were the birthplace of Lentil as Anything in 2000. And while Lentil now has other cafes dotted around Melbourne, and one in Sydney, Lentil in St Kilda remains my favourite. I have such happy memories of volunteering there back in 2011, and I didn’t know it them but being part of a food movement that will really feed the world.
Volunteering at Lentil changed my life and my attitude to food and food poverty. I didn’t know it at the time but the signs were there. Even before I left the UK on my first big trip I wrote about food and food poverty for Blog Action Day 2011. I wasn’t really aware of foodbanks or of the huge amount of food waste. Or the concept of Pay as you Feel for food. So yes, St Kilda you were instrumental in the journey I have made through life since 2011.
Lentil as Anything, St Kilda, inspired Adam, who started The Real Junk Food project in the UK. . You do that to people, St Kilda. You change them, enable them to re evaluate life.
It wasn’t just Lentil in St Kilda that opened my eyes to a new and better way of living.
Veg Out also helped me make the link between food and growing a community. After all we all need food. And someone has to grow it. Here the community grows and shares food. Food is taken seriously, growing it is fun. St Kilda, you gave your community this garden, full of happiness and hope.
And getting slightly lost yesterday, by catching the wrong tram, led me to discover a new side to you.
And I know there is still more to discover. So I will be back. Soon.
Meanwhile there are other places to visit and experience in Melbourne. But it is not good bye, it is Au Revoir St Kilda.