Perth & Melbourne Postcard

G’Day Mates,

Dec 17, I flew to Melbourne and met up with a friend who showed me Melbourne at night. It was really great and the city was radiating Christmas. We stopped by a major department store and the windows were all done up in moving 3-dimensional Wind in the Willows decorations. They were amazing. People were lining the streets to look at each window in order as the story progresses. It was dazzling. I was only there for one night because on Dec. 18 I flew back to Perth because I missed the Southwest the first time I was there months ago.

After I landed in Perth, I was on a mad hunt for a cocktail dress as I was invited to a party for the night I would arrive back in Melbourne on Dec 23. It was a Christmas party for the Melbourne Rowing Club. As a backpacker, I was completely unprepared and that was the only day I would have available to look. I was a shopping lunatic and it was wonderful. Shops all close at 5:30pm and at 5:15 at my wits end and prepared to go in sweats, I found the dress. It really was that dramatic for me.

As I said, I wanted to see the Southwest that included Margarite River, Albany and my most anticipated Hyden’s Wave Rock. We started in Margarite River and went to Cape Leeuwin where the Indian meets the Southern Ocean and went caving at the Ngili Caves. In Pemberton we walked the Valley of the Giants, the famous Tree Top Walk. There is a platform along the tops of the trees. In Albany we went to the Elephant Rocks, which were these great rock formations, and then on to Greens Pool near Denmark where I swam with only a few others willing to get into the freezing water. We climbed up onto a rock in the middle of the water and dived down into the ocean. It was scary and fun. Then all was great and safe up till then… I’m just getting out climbing on a rock to safety and Steve says careful there are barnacles. Ok I said. And my first step on the rock still under the water and OUCH!!! What was that?  Yep, it got me. It took a small bite out of the top part of my left toe.

Dec. 21 I saw Albany’s Natural Gap and bridge and sat on a Blowhole at the beach where the air just shot up through the rocks on my bum. It was wild. That was something I had never experienced before. After arriving back in Perth and after 31 hours plus of bleeding and harsh pain, I was advised to go to the emergency room. It looked so much worse than it was. It actually made me pretty nervous. It was just gross. I don’t need to go into detail, I’m sure. After they cut off…the Dr. decided to skip stitches. I was thrilled. That was on Dec. 20 and it is still not healed yet. But getting close. So, I have just one more, free Australian souvenir.

Dec 22 I finally saw the amazing Wave Rock and it was truly worth the 7 hr round trip drive to get to it and it was all worth the flight back to Perth. I stood in the middle of the rock shaped as a folding wave for the famous surfing picture on a rock formed over 200 million years ago.

Dec. 23 brought me back to Melbourne to spend Christmas. From the airport, I had one hour to get ready for the Christmas party, which I limped around. Then not once, but twice, I was stepped on, which just started this bleeding and pain thing, which ultimately sent me home in tears. It hurt something awful. But luckily it didn’t happen before I saw a dozen or so Aussie boys streaking along the Yarra River in all their Australian Glory.

Oh yes, I knew this was the start of the end of a great holiday. I already loved Melbourne. Christmas was nice. The hostel had this really big luncheon that really was more like a feast. It was my first time away from home for the holidays and that was a bit tough, but pleasant none-the-less.  Boxing day I walked around the sales and saw Vanilla Sky, which was really weird. I did all the sightseeing of Melbourne those few days and just loved it. I took buses and trains, went to the beaches, shopping, dining and exploring. It is a great city. Like Perth there is more to see so I will be back in a few weeks to see the rest.

Now it is Dec. 28 and I’m off to Sydney to spend New Years there. What will it bring? I know that most people favor either Melbourne or Sydney. Being that I love cities, I was sure I would love Sydney.

And so off I was to Sydney for New Years!

So glad I was…

So glad I did!!!