After visiting Brisbane, Sydney and Canberra we were looking forward to seeing what Melbourne had to offer and how it compared to the other “big cities” of Oz. We were staying with Helen in Upper Beaconsfield and she kindly dropped us off at the train station and we duly caught our train into Melbourne - an hours journey - seeing the sites you only ever see from a train …. the graffiti, scrap yards, rubbish dumps etc etc.
When we got to Melbourne we wandered about like headless chooks (or chickens to you pommies!!!) for a while finally finding ourselves at the harbour. It was a fairly nice day and we enjoyed looking at the boats and the very odd ‘cow in a tree’ sculpture which apparently is a reminder of floods and how cows have actually got stuck up trees.
|Cow up the Tree!!|
We decided that it was just too much like hard work to try walking around the city, so we hopped on a tram which took us around (free of charge) and gave a commentary of where we were and what we might see in the area. We got off the tram when about the heard “Captain Cook’s Cottage” and managed to make our way to the cottage which had been transported in 1934 brick by brick from Great Ayton (not far from our home in Redcar) to Melbourne. A quaint little cottage with hedges and roses and typical of the Yorkshire cottages we still see today - although obviously this one was a very un-modernised version having being restored to it’s original mid-18th century appearance.
After the tour around the cottage (which took about 5 minutes!) we jumped back on the tram to finish our circuit of the city, had a look around some shops, and did a fair bit of ‘people watching’ while we enjoyed a cuppa and muffin. Seemed to us that Melbourne was full of young people who were there to socialise - the street cafes were ‘chockablock’, the streets were full of people just walking and talking - and to be honest - we’d had enough - so we caught the train back to the quietness of the countryside! A sign of getting old? Or just a realisation that shopping is not so much fun when you know that you really don’t need anything, have no room to put it, would have to pay excess luggage to get it back to UK and actually really don’t need anything extra anyway!