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Day 2 – Melbourne

June 3, 2008

After managing to get a good amount of sleep (with the help of maybe 1 sleeping pill) and a HUGE breakfast I headed out to tour Melbourne while Andrew went to the conference all day. I walked up to the city from our hotel to have a look around. The main city is pretty much ‘a city’ similar to NYC in many ways. Though it does have many little side alleys that have fancy cafe’s and eateries. Yum! I wandered all around the city for about 2 hours and then headed back to the Yarra River (the main river running through the city). I followed it along until I ended up at the Rod Laver Tennis Arena and Olympic Center from the Melbourne Olympics…I think they were here in the 80’s. The river walk was really nice. I was AMAZED at the number of people working out in the middle of the day. It seemed to me that most of the people should be working…but I guess not. I reached the Rod Laver Arena to find out it was on Batman Ave…ha! After that I decided to walk along down the street following my map to the Chapel Street area. This is a long street with all of the fancy shops and restaurants. It’s just outside of the city and I thought it would be more like a Rodeo Drive. Oddly enough, all the fancy shops are mixed in with 7-11’s and other random ‘low class’ stores, pretty funny in my opinion, but still fun.

After Chapel street I thought I would be led straight to my hotel…boy am I bad at remembering where I started. I ended up walking WELL past my hotel and had to backtrack though another neat area of Melbourne. A street lined with office buildings, but also with trees. And at the bottom of each office building there was a cafe, bar or restaurant where people were hanging out and relaxing…at 3pm! 🙂 While it was very neat…I was EXHAUSTED from walking! All in all I walked for 5.5 hours straight! Guess I got my exercise for the trip! Needless to say we did not do MUCH at all last night. We had a nice dinner and delicious dessert (the Chocolate Bomb) at the hotel restaurant with some of the people on Andrew’s trip. So nice that pretty much all meals have been on Illumina so far! Andrew’s talk went great yesterday and it’s clear that all of the Aussie’s love him :). We were in bed by 10 and asleep by 10:05. Of course it’s 4:30 in the morning here now & we’re both wide awake and watching random TV, but we’re too excited about the next part of our trip to sleep. Today we head off to pick up the car, drive on the left side of the road and head out to the Great Ocean Road. We can’t wait to see some beautiful sights and hopefully Koalas! It will be a few days before we can write again. Hope all is well!View of Melbourne from the Yarra River

Rod Laver Arena on Batman Ave

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