Friday, August 29th, 2003 – Day 192

Friday, August 29th, 2003 – Day 192

As soon as I arrived In Melbourne very was talking about the round 22 game between Collingwood and Essendon at the Melbourne Cricket Ground tonight. I rang both Ticket Master and the AFL governing body. They and all the papers said it was sold out for weeks. Anyway I rang Chris, a guy from Melbourne I met in Peru.

The first thing I did today was to go on the 10.00am tour of the State Houses of Parliament

Now the home of the Victorian Parliament, this imposing monument to Victorian (as in Queen Victoria) architecture at the top of a run of sandstone steps was built in 1856. Between the time of the Australian Federation (1900-1927), it was used as the National Parliament. When the State Government is in session–generally on Tuesday afternoon and all day Wednesday and Thursday between March and July, and again between August and November–you can view the proceedings from the public gallery. However, you should ring ahead and check as sitting times do vary. During non-sitting times both the extremely opulent Upper House and the less ornate Lower House chambers are open to the public. Allow 30 minutes

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Melbourne – Australia – State House (29-08-2003)

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Melbourne – Australia – State House (29-08-2003)

The tour was an hour long and it was great. They are really relaxed about security here and the functions rooms are hired for weddings. Couples actually pose in the Parliament Rooms. Our guide was cool and he joked about certain politicians. Labour recently gained control of both houses of Parliament. He says political life here isn’t formal and all the politicians call each other and staff by there first name. He allowed us to sit in the speakers chair and in the there House of Lords. It was free, really good and I would recommend it. Our guide had been to Ireland to see relatives last year. Does every body living in Melbourne have Irish relatives.

I then visited Melbourne Museum which is a 12 minute walk. I passed the beautiful old Royal Exhibition Building on the way. Less interesting site about it here.

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Melbourne – Australia – Royal Exhibition Building (29-08-2003)

Explore a rain forest. See Phar Lap. Touch a dinosaur bone. Walk onto a set of the TV show Neighbours. Live a life-time in no time at all at Melbourne’s award winning Museum.

Situated in Carlton Gardens and next to the historic Royal Exhibition Building, Melbourne Museum is an exciting and innovative attraction – including permanent and touring exhibitions, dynamic performances and events, cafes, IMAX Theatre, gift shop, and undercover parking.

Melbourne Museum is a storehouse of ideas, promoting public debate on issues relating to the natural environment, new technology, and other changes occurring in our society. People outside Melbourne will increasingly have electronic access to the Museum’s superb collections, research, exhibitions and educational packages. The Museum has excellent education and catering facilities, a state of the art storage facility for the Museum’s collections, a range of performance spaces and a study centre called InfoZone to provide information access for the public.

Melbourne Museum is open daily 1000 – 1700

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Melbourne – Australia – Museum (29-08-2003)

I spent about two hours at the museum as it was excellent. It concentrates on contemporary issues like Gene research, stem research, cloning, bio-technology and GM foods. Its thought provoking stuff and I enjoyed all of it. There are lots of hands on interactive displays as well. It cost me 4.80 AUS with a concession.

I next caught the Circle tram to the Police Museum which has free entry. I have never been in trouble with the police but they make me nervous. I bet not many tourists end up here. You pass some security. Its strange sharing a lift with 10 uniformed coppers.

The exhibits and displays at the Victoria Police Museum include the following: police communication systems, policing in the city, weapons, uniforms, insignia, badges and a police motorcycle. Souvenirs and books are available at the museum shop.

The Victoria Police Museum is conveniently located in the Victoria Police Centre, Concourse Level, 637 Flinders Street, Melbourne – not far from Spencer Street Station. The Victoria Police Museum is open from Monday to Friday from 1000 – 1600.

Lots of information about notorious crimes committed in the City but missable. Again lots on Ed Kelly but interesting that they focused on the three Irish born policemen that Ned killed.

October 1878, Sergeant Kennedy, with Constables Lonigan, Scanlon and McIntyre, rode out from Mansfield. They wore no uniforms but all were heavily armed. On the 25th they made camp at Stringybark Creek, unaware that only a mile was the Kellys camp. Making one of his regular reconnoitres, Ned spotted the police camp and hurried back to raise the alarm believing, quite rightly, that he and Dan would be shot on sight. There had been recent, well-publicised cases of trigger-happy New South Wales police killing suspects and there is persuasive evidence that the Victoria police searching for the boys were equally likely to shoot first. One police officer was quoted as saying If I come across Ned Kelly ll shoot him like a dog. The gang killed two of the three.

I went back to the hostel around 5.00pm and met with Chris. I said I was trying to get a ticket for the game. He is a big football fan and he said I had no chance. What I did was I got a white dustbin bag from the bin in my room. I had a red felt pin and wrote in big letters on both side ONE TICKET NEEDED. I made holes for both arms and my head. It was now my T-shirt. I talked to Chris for 30 minutes and walked down town with him and got a tram (number 48) to Melbourne Cricket Ground.

The Melbourne Cricket Ground is Australia’s sporting Mecca. With a capacity of almost 100,000, it is home to the AFL Grand Final. These days its title is somewhat misleading, for football dominates the ground during winter, while only a relative handful of international cricket matches is played there in summer. Nonetheless, the MCG has a special place in the hearts of all football fans.

Melbourne’s number-one sport is Australian Rules Football–or simply, “the footy”–a skillful, often violent, ball game the likes of which you’ve never seen (unless you have ESPN). Melbourne sports 10 of the 16 Australian Football League (AFL) teams, with the others coming from Adelaide, Perth, Sydney, and Brisbane. The season starts on the third weekend in March and ends with the Grand Final on the last Saturday in September. The most accessible grounds are at The Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)–take tram no. 75 along Wellington Parade, and the Optus Oval at Carlton (tram no. 19 from Elizabeth St.). Tickets cost around A$12 (US$7.80) per person, or A$30 (US$20) for a family of four. For game information, call AFL Headquarters at tel. 03/9643 1999. Buy tickets at Ticketmaster (tel. 13 61 00 in Australia;

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Melbourne – Australia – MCG (28-08-2003)


In 1857, Tom Wills, one of the founders of Australian Football, returned to Australia after schooling in England where he was football captain of Rugby School and a brilliant cricketer. Initially, he advocated the winter game of football as a way of keeping cricketers fit during off-season.

The new game was devised by Wills, his cousin H.C.A. Harrison, W.J. Hammersley and J.B. Thompson. The Melbourne Football Club was formed on August 7, 1858 – the year of the code’s first recorded match between Scotch College and Melbourne Grammar School.

The game quickly blossomed. The Geelong Football Club was formed in 1859 and in 1866 an updated set of rules was put in place and competition started.

Anyway, the trams were packed with suppoorters from both sides and the interaction was friendly and down to earth. There were no other people looking for tickets but there were no newly released tickets. I went around for 10 minutes before someone spotted my t-shirt and sold me a 29.65 AUS ticket for face value. they were an extended family of five whose Aunt could not make the game. I was in the seats with them. The wifes mother was born in ireland and the sons girlfriend who was there, mother was born in ireland. She was visiting ireland for the first time next year. They were good craic and they expalined the finer points of the game for me.

There was 70,000 people at this gruge match and the atmisophere was fanastic. as they are rebuilding part of the north stand, there was a strong breeze in the stadium. this made play difficult and lot of pasees were going astray.

After each of the 3 breks, people rushed down for a few bees and hot pies. he beer was good and liked the fans. It s a similar game to our own Gaelic Footabl and we play Australia next October in the Compromise Rules series. There are alos lots of Gaelic Clubs in Australia. They also Play Auusie riules in ireland. Check out the Australian Rules Football League of Ireland (ARFLI).

Found this story on an Irish Site.

Absent-minded tourists reunited with missing luggage

2003-08-28 12:00:07+01

Three absent-minded Italian tourists who booked into a B&B in Dublin and subsequently forgot where it was have been reunited with their luggage after four days.

The three men booked into the B&B in north Dublin on Sunday, but lost their bearings and forgot where the building was located. They spent a number of days sleeping in their hired car before heading to Kilkenny in an attempt to make the most of their holiday. The Tourist Victim Support Office eventually traced the B&B and reunited the tourists with their missing luggage today.

  • Buckley leads Collingwood home in a heart-stopper – Collingwood have secured a home qualifying final – probably against their 2002 grand final nemesis Brisbane – after disposing of Essendon in a nailbiter at the MCG last night. The Magpies led at quarter-time, the Bombers at half-time and Collingwood again at three-quarter time in a game in which the only significant margin was the 16 points that separated them at the final siren. The result reversed the 66-point hiding the Bombers gave the Magpies on Anzac Day.

  • Bombers fall at MCG – August 30, 2003 Collingwood 12.11 (83) Essendon 9.13 (67) COLLINGWOOD secured second spot and a home AFL qualifying final with an outstanding 16-point win at the MCG. Kicking into a strong, swirling wind in the last term, the Magpies showed why they are a premiership favourites with a 12.11 (83) to 9.13 (67) win.

  • Magpies find the answers

  • What Collingwood’s win means …

  • Pies nail second spot after tight tussle

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Melbourne – Australia – Picture from the Football game (29-08-2003)

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Melbourne – Australia – Picture from the Fottball game (29-08-2003)

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Melbourne – Australia – Compromise rules (29-08-2003)

Some othe Irish Blogs. This Irish Guy is in Melbourne and this is WOW.