Day 11 – Under clear skies and a promise of 33 C, we headed for Melbourne. We stopped for lunch at the Vietnam Veterans Commemorative Wall at Seymour, where we found Dad’s name amongst the 60,000 or so service men and women who served in that terrible war.
I thought the memorial was both poignant and tasteful. We found my Uncle and Aunt’s place in Melbourne with no trouble thanks to Thomas Thomas.
The next day we negotiated the idiotic Melbourne ‘MyKi’ public transport system, and headed to Scienceworks at Spotswood. On the walk from the station, I popped my head into a bloke holding a garage sale, who showed me what he claimed was one of two Mitsubishi Zero radial engines recovered from a swamp near Darwin, as well as a 1950’s Channel 9 TV camera! Slightly better than my garage sale.
Once at Scienceworks we watched a Tesla coil give some props a buzz in a lightning show before checking out the magnificent 1890’s triple expansion sewerage pumping engines before heading home. It was nice to be in air con all day with the mercury topping 37 outside.
The boys had a fantastic time creating new and improved versions of themselves in the “think ahead” exhibit.
Day 13 – Jan 23 – We spent Friday in the city to give the boys a chance to take a tram ride. We stopped in at the Queen Victoria Markets and found a good selection of fresh and gourmet goods, and plenty of underwhelming junk stalls staffed by sullen teenagers. I caught up with my cousin Cath (who’d popped down from Sydney to catch some pro tennis), then caught the tram with Christopher and Adrianne to meet Kris and the boys at Fitzroy Gardens to see Caption Cook’s childhood house. The house was built in 1755, the same year Cook joined the navy – hence it seems unlikely that he was ever there at all. I don’t think they’ll rewrite the tourist brochures though.
Each morning we enjoyed a morning constitutional with Christopher and Sam was introduced to Geocaching, which appears to be a cross between a treasure hunt and orienteering. Sam was smitten – we’ll see how it goes . . .