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January 4th 2012
Published: March 26th 2012EDIT THIS ENTRY

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Out of Asia

So we landed in Brisbane on time and we had 90 minutes to catch our connecting flight to Melbourne, as this wasn’t Schiphol airport we assumed we were ok for time. As this was our first entry into Australia we had to claim our baggage, clear quarantine and customs, catch a bus to the domestic terminal and check in before we could be on our merry way to Melbourne. The customs weren’t concerned with the copious amount of spirits we had bagged in Singapore, oh no they wanted to inspect the tent because we had used it in Malaysia once and it may have a money spider in there. The cheek.......the country with the most deadly animals in the world is paranoid about stuff coming in!! So out came the tent and off went the plane. Missed it! It turns out planes here are like buses and we just got the next one 50 minutes later…. No dramas Shelia!!

We arrived in Melbourne on 21st December 2011, we were staying with a close friend from school and the chief! On route from the UK were two more friends who would arrive the next day in preparation for the Pomme Christmas festivities. Although, at $7.50 a Schooner (that’s a little bigger than a half to you and me; pints are uncouth apparently and not served in many places), it was going to be expensive!

Christmas day, Nat and I made the Breakfast but with pancakes this time on top of the normal culinary delights. We had demanded a Crimbo BBQ long before we arrived in Australia and we had got a big bag of shrimps especially for the occasion. To think, I have been waiting 28 years to say ‘throw another shrimp on the Barbi’ on Christmas day....what a GEEK! By the time we had got the BBQ on after it had stopped raining…. Yes rain again, we were all so merry we forgot about the Shrimps.

Our friend had planned our visit well in advance.....she’s organised; a spreadsheet had even been apparently created! A fishing trip was on the agenda which included 11 of us going fishing on 3 boats out of Melbourne bay. The day before apparently they had caught over 20 Red Snapper so we were heading out to the same spot for some more action. On went the sun screen and out came the beers, but there was no sign of any fish, it was slow. 4 hours later we ended the day with 1 snapper, 2 flatheads and a 25kg (ish) stingray which the girls caught and had on the line for over an hour. Well I say the girls caught, the captain caught because the girls were all sunbathing up on the deck every time we looked over. After been baked all day we headed home for an early night as it was the Eve of New Years Eve and rent a DJ (Grandad Groovey) had been summoned / demanded for the NYE party.

New Years Eve morning was spent rearranging furniture to accommodate the sound system as the sound had to cover the living room, dining room, staircase and outside. The theme was 1960’s beach wear which meant for the guys, not much clothing and for the girls big sun glasses and bathing costumes. Before we knew it the time was 23:30 so we all went down the ‘Yarra’ (the river) towards the city to watch the fireworks.... after that the memories are a bit patchy but I can remember getting back, and someone cranking the volume right up (I promise it was not me) until someone came to complain....... that’s where the memories end. Happy New Year!

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