14.12.2006 - 22.12.2006 24 °C
Today has been one of the most exciting days we have had in Oz so far. Not only have we both had an interview for a job today, (fingers crossed we will be working on Monday), but also we woke up to our first ferocious spider! It sitting there quite happily with it’s razor sharp fangs and long spindly legs in the kitchen sink waiting for it‘s next kill!
Now we have been preparing ourselves for this day since I can remember! Ali even started familiarising himself with the eight legged critters before we had even left the U.K by paying regular visits to a website listing some of Australia’s deadly spiders. Armed with Ali’s knowledge and a refresher course in the ‘Bugs Alive’ section at the Melbourne Museum we knew we were qualified to identify the critter as a White Tailed Spider! Now this spider wouldn’t actually kill you but a list of symptoms after a run in with one would be such delights as; vomiting, muscle twitches, headache and ulceration around the bite,Ewgh!!! doesn’t sound nice does it? We calmly managed to snap the arachnid and then wash it down the sink with the aid of a kettle full of water. Later that day we learned that the white tailed spider (or spid as we now call them) is a pest and our Landlord Shaun went white with fear when we told him!
We even took a picture for you,look.
And check out our house, nice! We have chandeliers and an unofficial pet mousey called Shane.
Last Saturday was the hottest day so far, it was around 39 degrees, I know a lot of you will have experienced hotter conditions, but when the city is surrounded by bush fires and the wind changes the conditions are unbearable! We woke up to a smell of burning wood, I had just presumed the neighbour was ignoring the total fire ban and was having a bonfire, that was until I went outside for my morning run (one of my many promises to myself to keep up for the foreseeable future) and I couldn’t see to the end of the road! The wind had changed direction and was blowing all the smoke our way! We paid a visit to the trusty BBC website and viewed a satellite photo of the area, oh my god, much of Victoria, a state the size of Britain was covered in smoke! Needless to say it was very hot and sweaty! The best remedy for this was a trip to the seaside. Our local beach is just down the road from us, but after paddling in there one drunken night we had come to conclusion that St Kilda beach was possibly not one of the nicest around and so headed off on the train to Brighton Beach, which is just 20 minutes down the track.
Whilst we were basking in the sun we witnessed a fire break out right in front of us and the resulting smoke managed to waft across the bay in our general direction.. It didn’t however, cool us down. This was done by frequent bathing in the Sea.. Another dangerous activity to cross off our list of things to do as the seas around this country are home to some of the most dangerous creatures and squelch things ever. We must have made quite a sight for some of the locals as Stokey Will enjoyed spinning around with Pol and Andrea making numerous comments about sharks and cone fish!
In the evening we headed out into the city to check out the Christmas lights and a local free open air screening of the classic film ‘Dirty Rotten Scoundrels’, oh how we chuckled! Melbourne was however very picturesque in the twinkling moonlight, but did lack the Christmas cheer we are so used to at home, I think it’s probably down to the weather rather than the people. If truth be told it really doesn’t feel much like xmas at all! Somehow walking around listening to “chestnuts roasting on an open fire” and “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas” wearing only shorts and a t-shirt whist basking in the sun doesn’t seem quite right. I’m so confused to what time of year it actually is I keep asking Ali when Wimbledon is due to start!
All across Melbourne there are crazy sculptures we took the opportunity to pose next to some of them.
Oh while I was walking around the streets of Melbourne I came across a familiar face, those of you who live in Manchester may recognise this little character, I can’t remember where about’s I’ve seen him before but I know that there maybe one or two in the Northern quarter and I think one somewhere on Oxford Rd!
Here are our friends Andrea and Will, ain’t they sweet!
As we mentioned early, we took ourselves to the Melbourne Museum this week to check out in full colour, some of the beasties that we will probably see on our journeys. Eurckkk some of the insects are wrong! Check dis out!
and here's one of me for Mum and Dad.
We had to make a sharp exit from the museum as the kangaroos woke up and started chasing Ali!
Rest of the week has been spent looking for jobs, being turned away for not being Australian and generally getting annoyed at the lack of work in this place. Things are looking up though and fingers crossed, we will both be working next week… oh and great first day in the cricket.. Shame Cook and Bell couldn’t stay in for a tad longer!