Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)

Look at any guide book to Melbourne and you will almost certainly see the MCG (also known simply as “The G”) in the Top 10 ‘must see’ sights.  And, I can see why.  With a capacity of just over 100,000, it’s a magnificent stadium.  It’s the largest in the southern hemisphere and the 10th largest in the world. (The Rungrado stadium in Pyongyang is the largest with a capacity of 114,000, to save you looking that up! 🙂  )

By pure coincidence, the England cricket team were playing Australia at the MCG in the first of five One Day Internationals while I was there and my daughter, Jo had bought tickets for us both as well as Aaron (for his birthday) and his dad, Rod.  England had lost the Ashes series 4-0, so Jo and I were not expecting great things.  But, thanks to a magnificent 180 runs from Jason Roy, England chased down the 305 total required with 7 balls to spare. 😁

England went on to win the series 4-1, so some pride was restored in the England camp but, like many Australians, Aaron and Rod were not best pleased.

The photos below were taken on my and Jo’s mobile phones.

Mornington and Portarlington

The Mornington peninsular and Portarlington sit on opposite sides of Port Phillip Bay, south east and south west of Melbourne respectively.   During our day trip to the former, we stopped at three different places to taste 8 sorts of cheese (made from either sheep, goat or cow’s milk), 4 types of cider and more varieties of wine than I can remember! 😉

It was Aaron’s birthday while I was there and his father, Rod, came down for a few days to help him celebrate and share in the fun.

The following day we drove out to the annual Mussel festival at Portarlington.  The weather wasn’t great, so we don’t have many pictures, but I can confirm that the local craft beers are very good and that it’s a fabulous day out.  This was where I lost my camera, so the below images are, again, courtesy of Joanne.


Australia – Great Ocean Road Trip

About a week into my holiday, I lost my camera. 😪  It was my own fault, I put it down  somewhere and when I realised I hadn’t got it, about 20 minutes later, I ran back, but it was gone.  We reported it missing, but it never turned up.  So, I lost all my pictures of Melbourne Zoo (including some fantastic butterflies), Mornington and our Great Ocean Road trip.  Luckily, my daughter, Joanne, had taken her camera along, so we have her to thank for the images below.  A big thank you too goes to Aaron, her partner, who drove us all the way to the Apostles and the Loch Ard Gorge before driving all the way back to Melbourne.

En route we stopped off at Bells Beach, Aireys Inlet, the Erskine Falls and Kennet River (Grey River Road) for some wild Koala spotting.

In case you are wondering how I’ve managed to produce 2 posts already – read on…

While wandering around the Botanic Gardens, my (now lost) camera suddenly stopped taking pictures.  I noticed this when I went to review an image and the the camera simply said “No images to display”.  It appeared to take pictures, but nothing was written to the SD card.  I’m not sure what happened but, fortunately, I managed to recover all the pictures I’d taken up to the last one shown yesterday, by downloading them to Aaron’s laptop, formatting the SD card, then starting all over again.  So, luckily, those images were still on his laptop.  The rest, as they say, are history!

You may be pleased to read that I purchased another camera for the remainder of my holiday… 🙂

Melbourne – Royal Botanic Gardens

The Melbourne planners are to be congratulated on their design for the City.  The central grid system makes navigation extremely easy (though rather annoying when you have to cross the roads and wait for the green man) and there are many parks, gardens and other green spaces dotted around to allow for relaxation and/or recreation.  I saw many joggers/runners out training while on my way to the Royal Botanic Gardens, which is easily reached on foot (or tram if necessary) from the ‘CBD’ (Central Business District).  To get there, I crossed over Princes Bridge and walked through the Alexandra Gardens, the Queen Victoria Gardens and the Kings Domain.  The Botanic Gardens are free to enter and are well worth a visit.

Melbourne, Australia (1 of many)

As mentioned in my post on Jan 1st, I’ve been away for the past 3 weeks, visiting my daughter Joanne, in Melbourne, Australia.  For the first 2 weeks, I stayed in a wonderful Airbnb, called BigOldFamilyHome in the Northcote area. My sincerest thanks go to Sandra and Andrew for being perfect hosts.  For my 3rd ‘week’, I took off to the Alpine National Park to do some walking, but more of that later…

In this first, introductory post, I thought I’d show you a few pictures, mainly of the Docklands area, which is being redeveloped.  Though I was advised that maybe upto 2/3rds of the apartments currently remain empty.

One of the many pluses of visiting or living in Melbourne is that tram travel in the very centre of the city is free.  The area is more or less bordered by the old style City Circle line trams – see pics 2 & 3.

Lac de Tanay

For my last post in this ‘trip down memory lane’ series, we have a picture of Lac de Tanay – in winter.  It’s a very popular destination in the summer, especially for families, but there was hardly anyone there when Judith and I arrived.

Coming soon – Melbourne… 🙂

22 Lac de Tanay in winter

Grunegghorn (3,860m / 12,664 ft)

I’m not really a mountaineer, but one year I decided to go on a Moran Mountaineering summer course – called the Oberland Odyssey.  This was a 5 day trip, staying in mountain huts and involved walking down the Aletsch glacier, before attempting the highest peak in the Bernese Oberland, the Finsteraarhorn, (we got to within 300m of the top but turned back due to low cloud) and then climbing anything else on the way back…  That’s what got me into this situation (in August)…

I think my Gravatar, or whatever it’s called that comes up when I ‘Like’ something, shows me standing, in all my gear, at the far end of this precipitous ridge.

18 The ridge to the Grunegghorn