Time has just gone so quickly by and it was upon me before I knew it.
(My friend is the daughter of my wonderful next door neighbour we had on the coast) Sadly we lost Rita a few years back and as she adored beautiful food we decided to meet somewhere each year in her honour and have a "Foodie" weekend.
This year we decided on Melbourne, and arranged to have three days down there exploring and eating glorious food.
I had never actually stayed in Melbourne( only briefly passing through when we went to Tasmania on the Spirit of Tasmania".
The trip took some planning , as my friend was travelling by plane from Newcastle, and I began my jouney from Dubbo. Brian took me to my brother's home on the Wednesday evening. My brother loves to create things for his garden from old bits and peices he obtains.
The next morning my sister in law dropped me at 8 am at the railway station to catch a bus to Lithgow and from there I transferred onto a train to Central Station in Sydney.
We shared a very small toilet /shower facility with the compartment next door( it was very compact but serviceable for our needs) I did not take the 2 photos above or the one below as my phone was flat and not able to be used)
I arrived at Southern Cross Station, Melbourne next morning at about 7.30 am and awaited the arrival of my friend Les who was catching the sky bus shuttle from the airport to the railway station.
We walked to our motel, a small modest block of rooms in Little Bourke street, which we decided was fairly central for us to do our exploring.
The Myer shopping centre had there Christmas window display up and we spent time wandering along with all the other people reminiscing of Christmas's gone by as their windows were Australian 60's themed, they really were truly wonderful.
We wandered the central mall area, had some great italian lunch in a small ally cafe and took a ride on the famous free city loop trams to have a look around. The public transport in Melbourne is really great and I had never been on trams before, so a new experience for me.
It was a night to remember, I loved it( something I would love to repeat one day with Brian)
The next day we had an early start ,we were booked into the Queen Victoria Food Markets for a "Hunter and Gatherer guided tour"
The following photos are a collection of just a very few of the wonderful produce stalls that numbered in the hundreds.
Afterwards we went for a walk( thought we ought to after all that food) up into the Fitzroy gardens, surrounded by beautiful old buildings,
We headed back to our motel, had a rest for a while , didn't need any dinner as we were stuffed from afternoon tea, spruced ourselves up and headed off just down the road to Her Majesties Theatre to see the stage production of "Kinky Boots"
The next morning we hopped on a tram to St Kilda and wandered the waterfront, it was such a picturesque spot.
We then wandered over to Ackland street for a coffee and cake from one of the famous bakeries along the way.
We headed back to the city on the tram and went past Luna Park( which I niavely only thought existed in Sydney.
We returned to our motel and packed ourselves up and caught a very busy tram back to Southern cross Station.
Brian collected me from the station, we did a quick grocery shop and headed home arriving back at the farm nearly 24 hours after having left Melbourne.
I had the most amazing, wonderful,fattening few days ever. I loved every minute of it, even my poor ,sore,tired aching feet from all those many kilometres we walked, loved it. !!
It was a wonderful way to honour Rita and next year we will do a more low key( inexpensive) weekend, heading to the coast and just doing special local activities around where we once lived. ( we are already planning and looking forward to it.)
Hopefully we will meet again down the track,
so until then, take care