Yesterday we had a public holiday in Melbourne, and after a weekend of feeling a little ordinary for two of us, a bit of homework, a bit of catch up shopping and a lot of relaxing, I took the boys into the city for a Family Fun Day. I do one of these every now and again, to 1) get my kids out of the house, 2) show them a side of the world that they may not be familiar with, 3) to just embrace life.
Everything, while not planned, was timed perfectly for the day. We arrived at the train station with just 2 minutes before the train departed, we arrived at our destination with just 5 minutes before the 1/2 hour show started… and I had happy boys (sometimes it’s like pulling teeth to go to places that they haven’t been to before, but yesterday it wasn’t).
Our first destination was the Old Melbourne Gaol. Something I should have gone to as a child as a school excursion, but never did, and it was always in the back of my mind to go. We first were treated like a criminal in the Watch House by a Sergeant, who locked us up in the darkened cells and were explained why and some of the infamous ‘who’s’ who entered the Watch House before they were sentenced in court.
After playing taking our photos as mugshots and in jail, we went to the actual gaol and were amazed by the thickness of the bluestone walls, the darkness of the entire building and the smallness of the individual cells. Some may feel it’s inhumane, but somewhere there must be a balance of what was once and the $40,000 per prisoner per year lifestyle they have now, after all, some do treat prison as a home away from home, as they are afforded so many luxuries in prison they may not even get at home. My boys played with the Ned Kelly armour, saw the hanging platform and peeped through the peep holes. My oldest son thought it was much better than he expected, my youngest son thought that it would be better, as he wanted to see real life prisoners…. Me don’t think so!
After the Gaol, we went to Strike Bowling to have a game of ten-pin bowling. It took us a while
to get going, but my youngest ended up with the only strike (with bumpers), and I got a couple of spares (without bumpers), but all in all it was a bit of fun. The boys then wanted to play a bit of air-hockey and test their boxing punch, before we decided that we were a little bit hungry.
We then walked the streets of Melbourne, through the arcades, and my youngest needed a Onesie suit for the school pyjama party this Friday, so we found him the dinosaur suit he was after. (love killing two birds with one stone!) We walked through the new Emporium building and beyond to our favourite little French Belgian waffle maker. The boys had their waffles and some Orangina – our favourite French beverage, and I decided to go the ham and brie baguette… So Yum!
As we had a few more things to do when we got home, we headed to Flinders Street station and the boys filled up at the Candy Station, and I indulged in a Spanish hot chocolate with a splash of hazelnut… OMG you must try!
The sun was shining so beautifully, my boys were behaving the best they ever had on one of our little adventures and we had lots of laughs, hugs and silliness which makes it the perfect day out. As my oldest is a teenager next month, I’m not sure how many more of these days are left in us, but I will cherish each and every one of them from here on in. Love my boys!