Nat and Beck Go Large!
We, along with a few others, were picked up at 1.30 by a crazy Australian in a minibus. Dazza, our surf dude/tour guide, introduced himself and then informed us that we might not necessarily meet Harold of Doctor Carl on this trip (Bummer!) before driving us around some of the better sights in Melbourne. First he took us to the Italian quarter where he filled us in on the Australian/Italian mafia activity in the area - ie 'family' owned restaurants, drugs, prostitution, illegal gambling etc. Don't worry mums, a Pizza Hut and a few fruit machines are hardly cause for concern by any stretch of the imagination - we get the feeling he likes his Puzo just a little too much!! Then he took us to Brunswick street were the cool/pot-smoking/weird people hang out! Apparently you have to be 'in the know' to get into places around there - think we'll give that one a miss! Next he whisked us off down the highway to Ramsey Steet - it doesn't look the same as it does on telly, its well small! - and Nat nearly passed out at the sight of the house where Kylie aka Charlene used to live! We drove to the studio where all of the inside filming is done, in an attempt to stalk a few of the cast members. They must have all been working though 'cos we never saw any of them - pants. Then it was off to Erinsborough High,which is actually an language school for non-english speaking immigrants. Highlight of this part of the tour was watching some chinese girls sucessfully knock herself out with a bat during their break time! He then dropped us off in St Kilda, a suburb of Melbourne, famous for its coffee and cake shops. Needless to say we sampled to local cuisine - mmmm chocolate fudge cake - I mean a girl needs a birthday cake, even if it is a day early! We walked around for a while and then it was back on the bus to the city. He showed us the tallest building in the southern hemisphere and the Melbourne Grand Prix track. He put his foot down on the home straight of the track and our brightly painted mini bus bolted all of 45 mph to take gold (or whatever you win when you drive in a circle for 65 times and get paid for it!). On Wednesday - the dreaded birthday - Nat decided it was no good to let me mope in bed and after leaving me to sleep for a while dragged me shopping! We went via the post office and picked up my birthday cards from people at home, almost got a little bit dramatic at one point but Nat shoved a caramel frappucino at me and there were no tears in the end! Managed to do some serious damage to the birthday fund in the hour that followed and then we went home to get changed. That night we went to Hard Rock for fajitas and cocktails - think i met my long lost twin, he had a massive fod, a bit of a 'fro and a strong resemblance to Jack! Several Bellinis and various other cocktails later we stumbled on to another bar before going back to the hostel at a very respectable 12.30! On Thursday we sat on the roof terrace until we couldn't take the heat anymore, then just generally minced around. We went downstairs to the bar and drank some flat Stella, which didn't agree with Nat (it was def the lack of bubbles and not the actual beer that made her feel unwell!) and went to bed. Anyway, we needed an early night as we were getting picked up early in the morning for yet another day trip. Thanks for all my cards, emails, txts etc - I loved them!!!!!! Some weiner sent me a picture of herself in a card, we'll put the picture online and see if anyone can recognise the mugshot a la crimewatch! Let me know if you know who she is - my sources tell me she's been committing credit card fraud (ie cutting hers up so she can't use them in the shop - but rembering the numbers so she can still use them online) all over the world for the past couple of years! Last seen rummaging through the sale items in Oasis! Lots of love, Beck and Nat xxx