Archive | January 5, 2011

Notes from our Melbourne holiday – Day 1 (Singapore – Melbourne)

2:38am Such a long and arduous flight. Our Emirates flight departed Changi Airport 25 minutes late. Bad enough that the targeted flight departure timing was at 11.25pm, I was sure this further delay in the children’s bedtimes would have a knock on impact on the overall jet lag effect later on. Sigh.

It’s a full flight and the children are finding it difficult to settle down to sleep in the cramped conditions. I’m thankful that DD is being a trouper, because my patience is starting to wear thin with DS’s grizzling. He’s been stickier to me than ever before. I couldn’t even get up from my seat to get something from the overhead baggage compartment without him crumbling into a wailing mess of tears and mucus.


10:25am It’s a bright and breezy morning as we walk out the airport and cross the road to the building where the rental companies are located. The children snack on animal biscuits and play on the sidewalk while we wait for DH to settle the car arrangements. Thankfully, DS is kinda back to normal. He threw up his breakfast during the plane’s landing and was very miserable afterward. There was no barf bag in my seat or his, so we grabbed a cup and made the best of it (which thankfully was still on my mother’s tray because the flight attendant never responded to our call button. Sometimes God’s grace happens in funny ways…)and scrubbed as best as we could with baby wipes.

It’s a breezy morning. I sniff at my jeans and his shirt but can’t detect any smells. Ha, thank God. 😉

We have to stop by for some groceries before driving to Phillip Island, so we drive into the city and try to locate Little Bourke Street. Before we get there though, I spot a solitary Chinese mini mart that’s open for business on Christmas Day.  Everything is closed, except Asian minimarts and convenience stores.

Too late. We’d driven past and it was a one way street. We make our way back up but manage to get lost in the process, so we find ourselves outside a Korean mini mart instead.

There isn’t much selection apart from rows of kimchi and beef, so we finally step out with what mum tells me later, is a much too fat-riddled cut of beef for cooking the children’s food, 300g of silken tofu, a single carrot (it was expensive!) and lettuce that set us back $28. Groovy.


1:30pm Whatever the notes on the internet say about driving times and distances should be taken with large measuring cups of coarse salt. Gah.

When we finally get to our accommodation though, it’s truly a sight for sore eyes and a balm for sore feet. I exclaim in delight as I find a new loaf of bread in the freezer, butter, jam, marmalade, honey and vegemite spreads on the kitchen counter, fresh eggs from the farm’s own chicken coop in a basket, cocoa, tea and coffee, and a full set of kitchen utensils, crockery and cutlery. God bless the owners of Lakeside Gardens Farmhouse.

The house has four large bedrooms, more than enough to spare. The children amuse themselves with the contents of a thoughtfully provided toy basket and stack of books set out in the fourth room, which is connected to the kitchen by a sliding door, while we set about making a quick lunch.

Flowers in the farmhouse garden

Life is happy and we are looking forward to the Penguin Parade at 7:45pm later on.


10:20pm The Penguins Plus ticket is definitely worth the $40. You do get close up enough with the fairy penguins, without having to compete with a large crowd and they (the penguins, not the crowd…) are absolutely cute.

DD and my mum followed the first of the penguins all the way back to their burrows. The only dampener was that DS fell asleep literally while sipping his milk (the jet lag effect) and missed it entirely. It won’t quite be the same but we bought a penguin storybook for him to make up for it.

No photography is allowed beyond the walls of the centre, but here is a pic of our little ones trying to sneak up on some unsuspecting seagulls.

Now that the kids are asleep, it’s time to get down to some serious laundry. Although I said I can’t detect the smell of barf, I absolutely refuse to carry it around with me for the rest of the holiday.  😛