So I’m stuck in class all day long today and all we are doing is listening to group presentations which are half boring/half interesting as a) group presentations are dull, however they are b) about interesting topics such as genetic screening for babies, human cloning, plastic surgery for “young people”, and whatnot. So this seems to give me the perfect opportunity to continue writing about my trip to Melbourne.

So Saturday morning I had every intention of sleeping in. I’m on holiday and I want to bloody sleep in! Ivo, being the morning person that he is thinks it’s a good idea to attempt to wake me up at 8.30 in the morning!!! Needless to say this attempt was followed by a significant amount of loud expletives. So Ivo, being the wonderful (and smart) boyfriend that he is chose to leave me alone and go eat breakfast. Smart man. So I (sort of) got my sleep in as I didn’t get up until 10 (by force I might add). We decided we wanted to go see the sharks at the aquarium and then “get lost in Melbourne” (pretty sure there is a commercial about that in Sydney).

The big question of the day is… “to tram or not to tram?”. For those of you who don’t know much about Melbourne they’ve got a tram system (along with buses and trains) that goes around the CBD and surrounding suburbs. Considering there was a tram stop just outside the hotel we stayed at we decided to tram it as I was not really wanting to try and find a parking space in the CBD on a Saturday. Though it is Melbourne so it may not be an issue. Anyway, we got on the tram and I bought my ticket from the little ticket machine and apparently broke the machine so Ivo could buy a ticket (he wasn’t terribly distressed about this).

So we get to the city and hop off at Federation Square, which in my opinion, is the most attractive part of Melbourne. From there we started walking to the Aquarium, which is only about 1 km away at the very most and sits along the river. We actually walked through this really awesome area which would make for a bloody awesome grunge photo shoot. Check out the photos posted. For some reason unapparent to me Ivo decided to run ahead and do a star jump for the camera. The first one he did was an epic failure and as he went to go do the second one some random (slightly demented) man ran up behind him and said something about Jet Star (cheap airline). Talk about creepy. Anyway, we finally got his star jump on film and continued on our way to the Aquarium.

Needless to say the aquarium was pretty awesome. We watched a penguin feeding and I now want a pet penguin. I’ll cut a penguin door in the fridge, Ace Ventura style. From there we moved on to just generally awesome fish and water creatures. I was able to cross 2 things off of my bucket list! The first one was the oh-so-awesome lionfish. As a child I read about lionfish in the child encyclopedias (Child Craft) that my parents had bought for us. I always wanted to see one and we didn’t see any when we went diving up at the Great Barrier Reef so I was extremely excited to see these and took about a million photos. The second water creature that I saw that was on the bucket list was the mudskipper. I also originally read about these in the Child Craft books and always wanted to see one. No one ever believed me when I told them about a fish that can live out of water and needless to say that greatly ticked me off as a child. When I saw these I was even more excited then I had been about the lionfish. I’m pretty sure Ivo is concerned that he may be dating a crazy person.

While not on the bucket list I did get to see swordfish and heaps of sharks which I thought was pretty cool. We saw turtles (I want one), Giant spider crabs (I hope to never see one again), octupi (I’ve always wanted a flatmate who has one), Nemo and Dory, giant clams, creepy look eels, seahorses, sea dragons (yes, sea dragons) which can be seen here and here. The thing that really drew us to the aquarium was the promise of baby hammerheads (oh so adorable). The final main display was a giant aquarium with numerous fish, sharks, and sting rays. It was amazing. There were heaps of sharks of different types (and yes, we did see the baby hammerheads) and the sting rays were ENORMOUS. One that we saw was about 5 ft (possibly larger) in diameter. Needless to say it was a $30 well spent.

Unfortunately, we were not there at the right time to see the shark feeding (I’m pretty sure I saw Ivo shed a couple of tears), however Ivo was assuaged by the fact that on the way out they had a few small aquariums with baby fish that have to be raised in a separate tank before being transferred to other tanks and he was able to cross something off of his bucket list. THE PUFFER FISH! From the moment we entered the aquarium he kept saying “I want to see a pufferfish” and as we left the giant tank at the end of the aquarium visit he predicatably had to pee. No, he did not see a pufferfish in the urinal. That would be disturbing. I continued onwards and found this ‘baby fish tank’ which contained 1 pufferfish. He caught up to me and subsequently spent the next 10 minutes taking photos of the pufferfish.

Aquarium trip completed successfully!

I was going to make this a post of our day, however I’ll leave it to the aquarium as it is quite long and the majority of the day involved just wandering around anyway. Will post more on the Botanical Gardens, the ANZAC memorial and dinner in another post.

♥ always