The Wizard In Oz...

Trip Start Sep 04, 2012
Trip End Aug 02, 2013

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Flag of Australia  , Victoria,
Monday, January 21, 2013

So a bit of familiarity after touching down in's obviously English speaking, it's not PIPING HOT (despite what the news says!), there are health and safety warnings and there are recognisable brands, all of which made us think it could be an 'easier travel' for a couple of months from here..........but after paying over £35 to get from the airport to our hostel in Melbourne (6 or 7 quid of that was to get BETWEEN TERMINALS!!!), we knew our new familiar surroundings were gonna come at a price!!!!! We were paying £3.50 each for an air-conned double room in'll cost the same for a loaf of bread and a tin of beans here!! CHRIST!!! This place is gonna BLEED ME DRY!!! So when 'Eagle eyes' Kala spots an ALDI on the way to us picking up a hire car, I could have kissed her!! NOW I feel at home!! That WILL be gettin a game shortly!!
First up though, an early trip out of Melbourne along the Great Ocean Road for a couple of days. We aimed to get from Melbourne to Port Campbell, which is just past the '12 Apostles' limestone rock formations in the sea. So the road itself......yeah it's a nice road!! It wriggles it's way along sandy beaches and clear blue sea on one side and beautiful countryside on the other! There are LOADS of places to stop off on the way and the beaches aren't 'car-park style' PACKED like Thailand!!!! The sun was out too! Can't be bad! After a stop at Anglesey and lunch at Apollo Bay of 1 tin of tuna and 6 slices of bread between us (it's all we can afford!!) we got ourselves to the 12 Apostles. They made for some impressive viewing! Formed from erosion to the limestone cliffs, only 8 of them now remain (one toppled over as recently as 2005). In fact, there were only ever 9 of them, so why they named them the '12 Apostles' I don't know! Strange! There were LOADS of flies at this place! (I probably could have left that bit out but.....there were!!)! Anyway, after prancing around on the beach near to 2 of them taking silly photos, we got on our way to the hostel for the night and did the reverse journey the following day, stopping at Loch Ard Gorge and Lorne on the way.
Back in our Melbourne hostel and Thursday meant one thing....AUSTRALIAN OPEN TENNIS!!!! We were going to a semi-final, and after trying my best back in October to work out which semi to pick to try and see Murray.....I failed!! (He's on now!). We had to settle for a good second best of Djokovic vs Ferrer. I'd been looking forward to this for ages!! I'd managed to drag Kala along and our seats were great - right on the net, kinda high up. I couldn't wait for it to was the WORST MATCH I'VE SEEN FOR AGES!! Gutted!! Djokovic was SENSATIONAL - it was like his racket was a wand!! Ferrer was terrible!! I mean on one hand it was great to see Djokovic play so well, but that made it so one-sided it was uncomfortable!! We'd barely sat down before it had finished!! Dear me! I was kept entertained by my better half with some funny questions throughout though........"Paaaauuul, do we clap when they come on court??"...."Paaaauuul, do the players come on to music??"...."Paaaauuul, what does 'let' mean??"..."Paaaauuul, why do they always hit it so hard??"..."Paaaauuul, do we have to clap after every point....I'll get sore hands?!!!!" BRILLIANT!!!
A day wandering around Melbourne was next. We first went to Birrarung Marr Park....which was closed!!...Melbourne doesn't like us me thinks!! Then onto Federation Square (eateries and a big screen) and Southbank (a nice little area by the Yarra River) before our TRADEMARK plain tuna sandwiches ha ha!!! That was it really. Nice place, Melbourne. I'll say one thing.....they like their bikes......a sh&tload of people on them passed us on their way home (presumably from work)! Most of them at 'race pace' too!! Good attitude people!!
I'm off to cry at how much better this match is than the shite we saw!!! :-(
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Amanda H on

Haaaaaaaa! Actual laugh out loud at Kala's questions to Paul. Absolutely brilliant! xxx

paulandkala on

:-D glad I can make you laugh from the other side of the world!! xxx

Dave & Julia on

Hi Paul & Kala
Have enjoyed all your blog to date. Specially this latest with having tennis in the family and Greg our eldest a coach here in Poulton.
We are slightly envious of you having just read the last one after watching the Mens semi ! Wow, must have been great - I must say this blog is very well done too.
Winter here seems to be going on bait now - yawn. Mind you we had a sunny day yesterday (Sat 2nd Feb) and did a good walk in the Trough of Bowland, with a good bike ride today.
Looking forward to reading more.
Did you see anything of the Tour Down Under?
What about Lance? Did you see his interview with Oprah?
Take care
Dave & Julia

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