I knew nothing about Glebe when I booked our Sydney flat. The Lonely Planet described it as Bohemian and full of bookshops, and there’s an outdoor olympic pool at the end of the road. So Glebe it was.
It’s been the perfect place to stay in this beautiful city. Central, but not high rise, good facilities but few chain stores, and the aforementioned pool has become our second home. It’s slightly scruffy, but then so are we.
Glebe Point Road, our road, couldn’t be any more perfect if it tried. Every third shop is a coffee shop, but there’s not a Starbucks in sight. There are independent bookshops, one of which is rather brilliantly called Gleebooks, with helpful staff who ferret out children’s books about Ned Kelly. There are second hand clothes shops, proper bakers that make fig and walnut bread, a plumeria scented plant shop with resident rainbow lorikeets.
The Turkish restaurant over the road has belly dancing some nights, alternating with live jazz on others at the French restaurant next door. We may not be able to go out in the evenings, but with windows wide open to catch every wisp of available breeze, we can pretend that we’re there.
The local residents are a colourful bunch. On the side streets, the verandas of little terraced cottages with their filigree railings, act as alfresco art galleries displaying sculptures of found objects. Hungover students sit on benches outside their houses sipping Berocca and squinting into the harsh morning light. Young men wander down the road, second hand book about wild mushrooms under their arms, strumming guitars. As you do.
After almost three months of suburbs and countryside, Glebe has done my city-dweller’s soul a power of good. It’s my kind of place.