We went to Melbourne this weekend and it was a typical "Ast" vacation =). It was cold and rainy the entire time we were there. Our flight got cancelled, the streets were flooded, there was a major storm during the outdoor penguin parade, the world had a level 4 pandemic flu outbreak..... you know the usual =).
Overall it wasn't so bad and we did have fun together. We went to Phillip Island, which was absolutely beautiful, even in the rain and cold. We did get to see the world's smallest penguins.
They march in together from the ocean at sunset every night to their burrows. It's pretty amazing. There was a huge storm and there is no shelter on the beach, so Dave stayed further up on the boardwalk with Annabelle under a canopy and I went to the beach to see the penguins come out of the ocean. I ran back to Dave and Annabelle just as the worst of the storm hit, but I was soaked. We watched the penguins from under the canopy and then made a mad dash for the car. We succeeded in keeping Annabelle dry and warm, but we were drenched. We drove the 2 1/2 hours back to the hotel cold and wet, but it was worth it.
We also went to the Melbourne Museum, Queen Victoria Market, and the Melbourne zoo. The Melbourne zoo is the oldest zoo in the world and it was stunning. It is set up to feel and look like a rainforest. Everything was completly covered in trees and plants. The paths were all dirt, they had cool outposts and play areas that kids could explore. It was the nicest zoo we've ever been to.
Oh, and I can't leave out the most important stops on the trip. We also got to go to a TGIFriday's, Borders, and USA foods. These places may seem commonplace to those of you in the US, but they are a luxery to us. It is hard to find American foods or large bookstores here and so these places were the highlight of our trip. We loaded up on lots of US goodies and brought them home. Of course they didn't have all of our favorites, but that's what friends and family are for right ;).