It's been a busy week and a half here at DCoE, with my parents coming to Melbourne for a visit. Well, my father technically came here for a conference, but my mom tagged along and a fair amount of visiting was accomplished. While my dad was working, my mom and I checked out some of the local sights, including the National Gallery of Victoria art museum and the Melbourne Aquarium, which has awesome penguins. Anyone who doesn't like penguins must be a sociopath. One thing Melbourne has going for it is great food, and we enjoyed dinners at a steakhouse, a fun Greek restaurant where there are no menus and Greek men tell you what to eat, and a traveling dinner on the Colonial Tramcar Restaurant (which my parents, being fans of trains in general, LOVED). D handled The Meeting of the Parents quite well, even when crammed into a tiny table on a moving tram.
Over the weekend, we headed down the Mornington Peninsula, which is only a couple of hours drive (on the left!) from the city and has a lot of beautiful beach scenery and vineyards. Kind of like Cape Cod, only with better wine. The photos below are of us at Cape Schanck and a picture of one of the many vineyards we stopped at.
The next stop was a trip to Scottsdale, Tasmania where father had planned a visit with some Australian work colleagues. Scottsdale is a small, agricultural town and since they don’t get many visitors, especially at this time of the year, they went out of their way to keep us entertained. My mom and I drove out to the forest and hiked to St. Columba Falls (see photo) and then returned to town to join everyone for dinner at Barnbougle Dunes, which is apparently a links golf course (whatever that means) and made the list of the world’s top 100 golf courses. It was night time so we couldn’t see much. After that, we spent another couple of days hanging out in Melbourne, and then my parents headed off on the long flight home. I really enjoyed their visit- it was great to see them and nice to have a few days off from work with the opportunity for some sightseeing and whatnot.