Rapt with life in Docklands
By Katie Johnson
Moving from New Zealand eight years ago to settle in Melbourne, Jacqueline Graham had a brand-new city in front of her and unlimited choice of where to live.
“When you don’t have any connections to a new city you have that brief moment where you get to decide which area you want to try out first,” Jacqueline said.
She decided to move into a furnished Docklands apartment, where she spent the next six months exploring Melbourne to see what else the city had to offer.
But after the time was up, nowhere else in the city stacked up to the waterfront hideaway of Docklands, so she made the decision to stay.
“I like Docklands because it’s so central, it’s like a little island in the middle of the city,” Jacqueline said.
“We can walk to Bourke St and we can be in the hustle and bustle of the city in 15 minutes, but when we come back across and the harbour opens up, it’s like a little oasis of calm.”
While working from home for the past few months of lockdown, Jacqueline has been able to appreciate the views from her apartment in Victoria Point more than ever.
“I’ve been lucky in that my work hasn’t been impacted so it’s actually been good be able to plan a day to go and walk regularly around Victoria Harbour to take a break from all the screens,” Jacqueline said.
“The water itself has that beautiful calming effect and I think it’s important as human beings to spend time with water and feel part of a broader ecosystem.”
In her spare time Jacqueline is also the national president of Business and Professional Women (BPW)—a membership-based organisation dedicated to empowering, educating and supporting women at work.
For the past few months, BPW’s meetings have all been online which has allowed her to interact with clubs across Australia, New Zealand, Nepal and St Kits and Nevis.
“When I moved to Melbourne eight years ago I was looking for some connection to the local community and I met a woman who was part of BPW Melbourne and found that community of women really empowering and inspirational,” Jacqueline said.
“Due to COVID our working days have become more fragmented, so it’s been easier to organise international meetings at 10 or 11 at night, where we can collaborate and learn from each other.”
Jacqueline and her husband share their birthdays with the City of Melbourne on August 30, which would usually coincide with a re-enactment of the arrival of the First Fleet at Victoria Harbour.
But with no events running this year, they’re celebrating by staying in and ordering in from Pastuso.
As Docklands lovers though, staying in, enjoying the harbour views and sampling the cuisine Melbourne has to offer is the perfect birthday celebration.
“We got married on the MV Victoria Star cruising in the middle of the harbour, so it’s definitely my favourite part of Docklands,” Jacqueline said.
“So, our birthday celebration will be having own Peruvian feast in the apartment, which will be quite special.” •