Friday, January 4, 2008

DATELINE: Melbourne, Australia                                                    

(Click map for more useful detail)

Author: Andy

As we left canberra, we assumed we'd have to stop for the night somewhere short of melbourne and then finish the drive this morning. Instead, we made it all the way into town. Once we hit the edge of town, I called in a reservation to a hotel in the fitzroy neighborhood and fired up GPS on my n95 to get us there. The hotel was this charming victorian guest house across the street from the melbourne museum.

Finding parking was it's own adventure. We circled a residential neighborhood for a while until we finally found a parking spot that had no time limit and was not permit only. And to top it all off, someone on the block had an unsecured wifi connection, so we were even able to check our e-mail. I still haven't been able to get the n95 reliably onto a wifi network since eliot's place, so i have about 23 pictures queued up for the blog.

Today we started our day at the old treasury building, which houses the city museum of melbourne. Even though we are getting a bit museumed out, it was a nice place and i learned some good background stuff about this city.

Since last night's hotel was booked for tonight, we wandered around a bit and eventually found a new place to stay which is not as nice but not as expensive. We're probably not going to give up our free parking space until we leave town, so soon we're going to walk back over to the car to get our stuff and bring it over to the new hotel.

Nick wanted to go read in a cafe, so i went to the old melbourne gaol. It's a decommisioned prison, and is famous for being where ned kelly was hanged. Yeah, i didn't know who he was either. It was a bit touristy and a bit pricey, but i enjoyed it. You start out getting "booked" in a simulated arrest. A sgt screams at you to stand in line and then she sticks everyone in dark cells and slams the door. Hey, it's a schtik.

Next i went on a tour of the courthouse used for several decades and then went exploring the prison itself. Lots of interesting macabre exhibits there. They have a big collection of death masks of the 137 people who were executed there. In each cell on the ground floor there's a death mask and that person's story. They even have the original gallows set up.

On my way back to the hotel i passed by a pet store. I noticed they were selling something called "roo jerky." i guess that's for dogs to nibble on. I'm still waiting to see a kangaroo in one piece.

No comments: