Melbourne took a while to grow on me. We all loved Sydney instantly, but our appreciation of Melbourne strengthened each day. It has several very distinctive neighborhoods and they each bring more character and charm to the city.
The penguins are molting this week so only eight showed up for the nightly penguin parade in St. Kilda. They were still pretty cute and it was cool to see penguins in the wild. One tried to climb aboard a boat in the harbor, but penguins can’t climb up ropes very well.
We had a nice combination of beach days, Australian sports, and city walking. We stumbled across a cricket match at the University of Melbourne, and I think we acquired a decent understanding of the sport. We only stayed for one wicket of one team, but it lasted 90 minutes and they scored 60 runs with eight overs. The match is probably still going.
The Australian Open (tennis) is playing now too. The public squares have lounge chairs and umbrellas set up with broadcasts on large screens.
The Yarra river cuts through the city and crew boats practice on the river while their coaches bike along the banks shouting instructions. Marlene almost got ran over because she was “distracted by Cookie monster playing the bagpipes.”
Our other favorite part of Melbourne is the gelato. Each place had a unique sorbet flavor and I tried grapefruit, watermelon, rockmelon, pineapple and apricot.
Today half of the Australia Diggins fly to California and the other half fly to Cairns. We had a truly wonderful time exploring Australia together.