Monday, June 18, 2007

Melbourne Trip II

The next day turned out to be a bit difficult to leave the apartment. We'd taken down a few of Harry's favourite toys to ensure she felt comfortable in case she flipped out at being somewhere new. But she took it all in her stride without any concerns whatsoever - in fact she was enjoying playing with Doll in the Maisy blocks and watching herself in various videos on my phone that it took a lot of convincing that Melbourne was a worthy competitor for these activities. One of her favourite things to do was stand on the coffee table and lunge herself towards the lounge. She LOVED doing this and then loved to watch the video I took of her doing it over and over again. Self admiration is no problem for this little Leo child.

When we finally made it out on the tram, we headed to the Docklands Park which looked like Harriet might enjoy it from the promotional photos. Well it was a lot smaller than I thought, but Harry did love it. And did I mention that there was a child-sized TUNNEL there as well?!! Talk about awesome! But even with some cool circular sculptures, a big wind humming sculpture and a slide about three storeys high, harriet ended up wanting to spend forty minutes standing on a little mound and throwing stones into a pile. Which would have been fine except that I didn't take any form of personal entertainment with me and it was freezing cold with the wind whipping through the park out there by the water. Brrr....

We got back on the tram after a very long stop at the park and went down into the city itself for a potter around. Harriet was showing signs of being sleepy so I walked back up to the apartment and put her down for quite a long sleep. I was more than a little frustrated - here I was in Melbourne, loads of gorgeous cafes and bookstores and places of interest within sight and I couldn't do anything! *sigh* So I consoled myself with my magazine about popular neurology instead. Harriet ended up sleeping for about three hours and when she woke I thought it prudent to get her bathed and ready to go out.

So a very uneventful day (it would have been perfect to catch up Margaret! Oh well, definitely next time though) and a quiet night at home which was actually really nice after having missed Jimbo back in Sydney.
The next day though was a Saturday and the day we flew out. So we woke and got everything packed and ready to go. We left our bags down at reception and caught the tram to St Kilda for breakfast. We got out at the wrong stop and ended up walking in icy, biting winds down to the main drag. Our first priority was somwhere warm so when we walked past a cafe that had a roaring open fire it was a no brainer. Inside we ran and bagged a table right in front of the blaze. Harry was absolutely intrigued by it although she did keep telling everyone to 'stay back'.
Harriet's latest object of interest is the humble pepper mill. She loves them! She loves to turn them and crack the peppercorns, she loves to eat the pepper (yes, you read correctly), she loves to make a little pile and use it as a feeding bowl for her wombats - you name it, a pepper mill can apparently fulfil it. Anyway it makes eating out a little difficult but also easy to entertain her. Plus when we walked out on to Acland St we had an interaction with a big black dog that Harry got to pat and kiss, then an alpaca which didn't interest her at all. Yep, you read correctly - an alpaca walking around on a lead in St Kilda. But Harry, funny mite that she is, was only mildly interested. Maybe those petting zoos have given her a false sense of the inner city alpaca population.
Whatever it was, we headed back into the city to catch a tram to the Queen Vic Markets. The best thing about that was the story waiting for it. There was a button you could pres that had a woman's voice telling you how long until the next tram. As you can see by the photo, Harry thought this woman was an absolute crack-up!
Harriet has also developed her 'scary face', copied (without any help from us) from a photo in one of her books. She also tried to age James and I by being fascinated with swinging on the poles that headed out into the traffic at the tram stop. I think it's safe to say that Harriet and poles are a match made in heaven, however the poles have a pesky habit of being placed precariously close to the road. Ridiculous.
The Queen Vic Markets were so crappy that we pretty much did a rapid circuit of a few lanes and then left. Not before picking up some uber funky striped tights for her though. I love these tights and the trip to Melbourne was worth it for them alone! As we walked back into the city we passed this little park which we had to stop in - it had these cool toys that you sit on and use the handles to dig up and move sand. Harriet (read: Papa) loved them!
We walked back to the apartment to pick up our bags and then headed out to the airport in the "man's car" (trans: taxi or as Harry loves to say, "tay-si". We were in a totally packed flight going back to Sydney and because James had his seat booked through work, we weren't sitting together. We appealed to the hostie at the gate and she managed to (somehow) wrangle us three seats in a row so that even though we hadn't paid for Harry, she had her own seat. The irony of it all was that after all this working around the issue, and worrying about being on the packed flight with Harriet, she ended up falling asleep for the entire flight all over me so that we didn't end up needing the spare seat at all! Flying down into Sydney was the most horrific turbulence as a result of the Sydney storms. It was awesome! Everyone in the plane was laughing nervously as the plane lurched violently from side to side and we flew in over the Harbour which was dramatic as well.
Anyway I have to go and finish this now because Harry has seen this photo of the little dozer and has to now see the other ones, so I'll sign out and post this finally!


Jen - Faithful Servant of the Adventurous Duo! said...

Sounds like your holiday in our 'freezing' city went well and you took some gorgeous photos of Ms Harry.

It would have been great to catch up with you while you were here, then I read about you being at Vic Markets on the Saturday and I realise it was against fate for us to meet. That day I went there with the kids and some friends, for the first time in about 5 years! Surely if there was a time we were to bump into each other it would have been there!

Sif said...

Gawd, yes, Melbourne is FREEZING atm, isn't it?

Love the scary face, very cute!

What do you mean the Vic Markets are crappy??? Hahahaha, I've only just discovered them!

Got to take the boys down to Ackland Street and see if we can spot an Alpaca, me thinks!