Day 46 - St Kilda/Dandenong/MCG (Melbourne Cricket Ground)
As we didn't get in till late last night the packing has to be done this morning before checking out so we're up bright and early (again) for showers etc before heading out to meet Jason who's taking us to stay at his gaff for a week (yay a real house) He drives us to his and gives us the guided tour (it feels really strange to be in a house again after hotels/hostels for nearly 2 months!) We all sit down and make a plan about all the stuff we wanna see and do for the rest of the week, feel a bit sorry for Jason as he's now got 3 Mancs in his house that don't really know the area that well and the pressures all on him however him and Lou have already sorted out the 1st day and they're taking us to our 1st ever AFL Game (Aussie Rules Footy) Hawthorn Hawks Vs Melbourne
The taxi arrives and we were originally planning on going to the train station and heading to the city by train however as he's finishing his shift he gives us a decent deal and drives us to the ground (result!) He tells me and Rho that we "look English" and that Lou speaks so fast she could be a news reporter, however he then gets distracted and gets road rage beeping his horn at a car and muttering to himself (Drivers over here are mental)
We make it to the ground in 1 piece and are a little too early so go meet Jays mates in the local boozer. As we're walking into the bar the bouncer looks at Rho & Lou and looks confused but doesn't say anything and opens the door to let us all in. We order a couple beers and then realise why the girls got a funny look .. turns our its a bar that employs strippers! (not a real strip bar as the rest of the staff are fully clothed) As we drink up we realise we can't leave as the bouncers locked all the doors, we have to wait till the strippers finished her "act" and this goes on for about 15 minutes and we finally get out and head over to the stadium for food. Jay decides we're best heading to the top as it has a bit of cover up there incase it starts raining and it was indeed a good call.
The game starts and i notice how different everything is compared to real footy. The fans are all mixed with each other, most teams share grounds, there isn't really a transfer market, there's no fouls as such, no red or yellow cards and people other than the players are allowed to run on the pitch at anytime! There are loads of other things way too many to list here but it's better than rugby as it's faster more end to end definately sommat i'd get into if i was there.
As i mentioned earlier we were under the bit of the ground that was covered and it was a good job as over the next 2 hours was the most bizzare weather i'd ever seen. It started grey and cloudy then sunshine followed by strong wind, then downpour, then roasting hot sun, then torrential rain (this happened repeatedly over the coming hours!) I also sampled some Aussie food a Meat pie covered in tomato sauce (Ketchup) I dont understand the point in this as pies have gravy but Jay assures me it's the done thing and he's right i look around and there's people with ketchup covered pies, chips, sausage rolls, on sandwiches it's everywhere they're mad for it here!
We're all Hawks fans today and they end up winning pretty convincingly so all their lot are in a good mood. After a train ride back to Dandenong we settle down with a nice chippy where we're told to try "Dim Sims" another Aussie favourite. They're described to us as "meat things in a pastry with veg things" so i was a little skepticle but when in Rome etc... We both give them a go and they are nice however we're still unsure what exactly they are probably best that way. We have a couple more beers before we're all ready for bed, a good day out with plenty off stuff happening and i'm sure the rest of the week will be just as eventful.