Melbourne, Day 3

Melbourne Travel Blog

 › entry 24 of 31 › view all entries

Started the day with a coffe and breakfast somewhere on Flinders St (Very good it was too) and made my way to the Immigration Museum. A very interesting place. It charts, as you might expect, the history and stories of Australia's immigrants and it pulls no punches about itself either. It tells of Australia's 'White Only' policy, the very dodgy legislation that was around in past times and gave an example of the infamous Dictation Test, where potential immigrants were given a 50 word dictation test. I failed the one in English, but the sting on this test was that folk could be set the test in any European language, so there were a few examples where a multi lingual examinee passed the test several times before being given one in a language he failed in (Gaelic, for example).

Nice! anyway, it also gave due coverage to a more enlightened approach to immigration and was a very enjopyable hour or so.

I had intended to go to a ship museum called the Polly Woodford, but discoverd it was shut for refurbishment and as I had to be this side of town to meet Steve at 1.00, decided to visit the Melbourne Aquarium. 2 aquariums(aquaria?) on one holiday? Well, I like them so...

Anyway, apart from realising part way round that it was Saturday, and therefore full of kids, it was fine. not as impressive as Sydney, aprt from the large gallery in the middle, which was better and at 11.00 offered the chance to see the rays and sharks being fed by divers. an informative commentary by the chap on the outside of the tank too.

I'd tracked down a chap called Steve Neil, who was seconded to the UK a year or two ago and we met via work, and he arranged to meet for the afternoon and suggested going to an Aussie Rules game.

Seemed a hoot. Can't go to one in the UK and he could explain just what the hell was going on! Had a choice of 2 games. A better footy game probably at the Telstradome or a lesser quality one at the MCG. Well, as I was unlikely to be able to spot a good 'un from a bad 'un, there was no choice. Off to 'the g'.

Well, it might have been only 1/2 full, but the atmosphere was great. Steve explained the rules, so I am now wiser and I have now semi-adopted Melbourne as a team to keep an eye on. Starting at the bottom of the table will be quicker I was reliably informed.

After the game we went to Steve's for tean via a scenic drive through the hills and a brief stop off to snap where that classic drama Neighbours is filmed. I was surprised. It's just a regular street in an estate.

Lord knows what you get on the many trips to see the set. A ride in a painted bus it would appear.

Anyway, Steve's wife Toni had cooked a roast, so we ate and chatted until it was time to leave. They and the kids would move to England at the drop of a hat, whilst I'd seriously consider going the other way. Grass greener syndrome? Steve dropped me back around 10.30 and it was 'snifter time'.

It was really good to catch up with Steve again. Wonder if we'll meet face to face ever again?

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photo by: jendara