Christchurch to Melbourne
Happy New Year, Christmas, Birthday, Hanuka and anything else I have missed since I last wrote my blog! Sorry its been so long been proving hard to get a decent computer and internet in Auzzy land.
Sooo…. After spending a day in Christchurch I left later the next afternoon for the airport. My flight over to Australia was at 6am ish so I decided to sleep in the airport. Something that proved a lot easier said than done! I got there 7pm ish, settled down and had tea etc. A lot of people had the same idea as me and were camping out for the night in the airport. There was a cordoned off corner next to the arrivals entrance that was marked a “Rest Area” so basically a piece of carpet that we could “sleep” on. I was amazed how prepared everyone was, they had blow up mattresses, sleeping bags, pillows and everything. So I lay there freezing to death with a towel over me as a blanket and my bag as a pillow! Its safe to say I didn’t get much sleep but ah well I checked in around 4am, had some breakfast with a Canadian girl that I met the day before then boarded for Melbourne! The flight was pretty cool as I could see the New Zealand mountain ranges poking through the clouds all covered in snow.
I spent 5 days in Melbourne and saw a lot. It’s a pretty cool city, a lot of café’s, bars and restaurants. The first day I got there I went to a local market just as it was closing, the guys at the veg stalls were going crazy selling everything at half price, it was nuts! I walked out with my hands full! I had a bag of about 50odd mushrooms, a load of spinach, some onions and courgettes all for something stupid like 30p a bag! I didn’t have a clue what I’d do with it all but it was good fun! I shared my hostel room with two Irish guys and a girl from Taiwan. That equalled communication disaster! I don’t think I’ve met anyone with such strong Irish accents! I needed a translator couldn’t understand a word they said except for “Whats the craic?!” I just smiled and nodded most the time. Then the girl from Taiwan did her best but yeah her English wasn’t great, never mind trying understand all of us!
I luckily met a cool German guy called Alex who could speak decent English and an English girl called Shelley so we did a few things together. Alex took us to a German bar which was eventful, don’t think Auzzy guys are used to huge Steins of beer! Then we went to watch the Inbetweeners film at last! Alex loved it but was slightly worried about our sense of humour!! We also went to the busiest night market I have ever been to! There were thousands of people there and loads going on, it was really cool. I had my first Kangaroo sighting in Australia and it was between two pieces of bread!! Tasty!
During my stay in Melbourne I went for a couple of runs through a park and around a lake with palm trees and a cool road running around it. I went when the sun was setting. The city skyline was behind the lake and it was a pretty stunning view to have in or just outside the city, I thought it should be a place where they had some event or something. I later found out that I had been running basically around the Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit!! Pretty cool!! I also did a walk that was named the sports walk, it basically took me to the huge sport stadium complex they have in Melbourne. The Rod Laver Stadium (Australian Open), The MCG (Cricket) and loads of other smaller stadiums are all within a stone’s throw of each, I’ve never seen so many big stadiums next to each other!
My plan was to go from Melbourne to Sydney in time for Christmas. However I hadn’t realised how big Australia was. I thought it would be a few hour’s drive and be easy to sort out so I hadn’t got anything booked. It however is more like a 12 hour drive and a bus ticket costs around $80 so I didn’t know what to do. I went on the trusty Gumtree website once again and found a guy that was going up the day I wanted to and was offering room for 3 people. I rang him and despite him sounding like his head was in the clouds he sounded ok and legit so I planned to meet him early that morning to get a lift. I got the train to a little town on the outskirts and sat in a park waiting. Some people got off the next train and someone shouted “You going to Sydney” I ended up sharing the lift with two German girls both living in Australia. We squashed into the guys tiny car and drove up to Sydney. I drove some of the way which was good and it only took about 8 hours!