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Tuesday, December 12, 2017


Melbourne National Art Gallery
Melbourne is the capital city of the Territory of Victoria in SE Australia and thought to be a stepping off point to Tasmania. Our attraction to Melbourne is that our grandsons are playing in a major Volleyball tournament that has attracted 530 teams/138 schools/ 5000 participants.

While we’ve over the past 2 years been able to see Kaden play for Gold in both court and Beach volleyball this is our first chance to see Riley, and as misfortune would have it, an injury to a senior player on Riley’s team and another players bad ankle; they needed backups. The director suggested calling up a player from the younger age group. Kaden, being the Captain of that team, with Riley the Captain of his team, and them having played beach volleyball together before it made sense.  It was nice when the Director of sports for John Paul College came up to us after learning we were there and spoke so glowingly of our three grandkids and of course their parents. Need to say we blushed a bit?
Over the days and games we watched we came away very impressed with our oldest grandson’s leadership on and off the court. His mom and dad have to be very proud of Riley. And Kaden, while in support of the team’s bench to give it depth played well when called upon. Imagine being nearly 3 yrs younger and still fearless in facing those spiked balls. At one point Riley approached his coach and said he was OK for some bench time so Kaden could get some reps in. Then during the goal medal game Kaden was on the court due to his own abilities. The boys fought to 2 set scores of 25-23, but on the losing end. In Round robin play they had had the upper hand. So they came away with Silver for their work.

We took time to tour downtown Melbourne as well and found it to be a thriving vibrant city with all the benefits and problems related to a large over 4 million people population.
Melbourne Skyline
The downtown core has a wide promenade on both sides of the river and some very nice museums and Art galleries.

Abbey using one of the Simulators at ACMI

However traffic congestion is absolutely horrid there and from our arrival the first night from Christchurch through to our return by the airport today traffic is problematic. Such a departure from Brisbane.

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