Soaking up the cold in Melbourne!

Trip Start Jul 02, 2004
Trip End Sep 10, 2004

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Thursday, August 12, 2004

Oh no... got knocked out by a really heavy cold in Melbourne :-(

But for what I did do and the day that Emma and Anthony organised for me, it wasn't wasted. I also managed to spend an evening at the IEE Victoria annual dinner where I did my final presentation for the IEE on my travels.

So firstly, thanks to Malcolm Foo, Matthew Galt, Cameron Smith and Sam McLaughlin from the IEE in Victoria. All of you and those I didn't mention helped to make it a really memorable presentation and evening out the Phoenix Bar afterwards.

I really enjoyed the presentation it was really well received in Melbourne. Thank you IEE!

First stop... Victoria Market
Now, what about my day out in Melbourne, well thanks to Emma Fell, I was so well looked after and on the days I was well, had enough to do in Melbourne to keep me occupied. On the Sunday I was there, myself, Emma, Anthony and Yallanda headed down to the famous 'Victoria Market' which is the largest market in the Southern Hemisphere. And it really is massive. For those of you who will get a boomerang from me, this is where I got it from. We only touched on the food market but I tasted some of the best Biltong dried, cured beef pieces ever thanks to Anthony's recommendation. It just had so much flavour and for any meat lover like me, really was something to remember.

As well as the food, there were stalls upon stall of tourist souvenirs, tacky mantelpiece decorations, miracle hair growth cures and famous Australian Ugh boots! It was an experience and in the hour and a half we spent walking up and down the stalls, I don't think we even saw a quarter of the market!

After that, we drove down to the beach resort of 'St Kilda' which kind of resembled Brighton, UK but with palm trees! But it's array of funky shops, posers and cafe's made it a real experience. I even saw people feeding their dogs on the tables outside restaurants whilst they ate. Yuck! Mind you, they love their dogs in Melbourne and any breeds that have a novelty factor attached to them, certainly earn points around the 'who's who' circuit.

And a lap of the Melbourne F1 Grand Prix!
Believe it or not, Melbourne's F1 Grand Prix circuit is made up of roads in a sports complex. But it's not possible to go racing around it like Michael Schumacher because there are road blocks everywhere to slow wannabe-racing freaks down and in some places, the speed limit is just 20kmh! There are even stealth cops with Sydney number plates moored to the side of long straits of the track to try and catch people out who might try and speed. So, all in all, it was a very slow experience but hey... who else can claim to have a ride around a grand prix track in a BMW! Thanks Anthony.

The impressive ANZAC shrine
Melbourne has built a shrine to the Australian and New Zeland Auxilliary Corp that founght for the allies during the world wars. It's a really somber place but one of pride and sadness. There were many key battles that the Allies only won or held the Germans back because of the ANZACs and this shrine is testament to that.

At the top of the shrine is a fantastic view of St. Kilda Road which is like the Champs Elysee of the southern hemisphere. It's a fitting memorial to what I feel was the best thing to happen to the British forces during the 2nd world war and certainly better than any war memorial I've seen in Europe.

A special thanks to Emma Fell
Emma, thank you very much for looking after me in Melbourne and arranging my itinerary. People you know in the UK are lucky you are so willing to look after them in Melbourne. You're a star!
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