Monday, February 28, 2011

Melbourne trip (Day 5 Story 3) Mekong Vietnamese

After return the rental car to Hertz, we walked to Greenhouse backpacker for check-in. Then we walked to Swanston Rd for dinner. We'd chosen Mekong Vietnamese restaurant.

Prawn and chicken rice paper roll (Tom & Ga Goi Cuon 虾鸡米卷) @ AUD 4.50.

Tea and sauces provided.

Beef and beef balls noodle (Tai Vien Pho 生牛肉+牛丸汤河粉) @ AUD 8.50.

The bean sprout and basil served with the noodle.

Chicken drumstick noodle (Ga Dui Pho 鸡腿肉汤河粉) @ AUD 8.50.

4 color juice (Xung Xa Hat Luu 四色冰) @ AUD 3.50. I missed the chewy jelly).

I always love Vietnamese food, unfortunately I can't find a good one in Malaysia yet.

Address: 241, Swanston Rd, Melbourne, Victoria 3000
Telephone: (03) 9663 3288
Fax: (03) 9663 3488

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Melbourne trip (Day 5 Story 2) Ararat Hills Park

When we passed by Ararat on the way back to Melbourne, there is a signboard showing scenery lookout, we follow the signboard and reached Ararat Hill Park after around 10 min from Western Hwy.

Can you see a straight divider line under word blogspot? No photoshop, it is original picture.

Beside us, there is another lady drive up here and have her lunch here.

Then, we move on. I can't remember where, probably is somewhere near Ballarat, we saw another scenery lookout sign with windmill. So we turn into the country road, off the highway. It is a long road parallel with Western Hwy, more than 10km if I was not mistaken. Of course, we got to see the wind farm.

We were on Western Hwy again. Hold your steering tight, at some of the part the wind was very strong, where we can only drive at 90kmh to keep our Toyota Yarris steady and stable.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Melbourne trip (Day 5 Story 1) Bunjil Shelter, Australia

In the morning, after we check out from Tim's Place, it's time to travel back to Melbourne. We have to return our car by 5pm.

Visitor center officer recommended us few places to visit on our way back. We'd chosen Bunjil Shelter. Why? We have no interest on vineyard, nor Sovereign Hill, nor Chinese Museum.

Bunjil Shelter is not too far from Halls Gap. At Stawell, there are sign board on directions. There is a car park at Rocky Hills, just around 100m we reached Bunjil Shelter. However, we were both a bit hesitate because we are the only car at the car park. We think it should be safe to continue the visit. Follow the path and it will lead you there.

There are a lot of rocks, and it was very windy.

A hungry rock open its mouth? Just kidding :)

From one of the information board
Bunjil created the land and the water, the plants and animals, the laws and the religion of the Koori people.
What is Bunjil shelter?
This is the only rockart painting of Bunjil known. It is widely regarded as one of the most significant cultural sites in south eastern Australia.
We didn't see any rockart and didn't search for in specific. The wind was too strong, and we were a bit worried to meet some wild life that we cannot manage.

Grampians National Park view from here.

The tiny flower at such a windy rocky hill.

It's time to continue our journey!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Melbourne trip (Day 4 Story 5) Some flowers

Just to share some flower photo took at Tim's place.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Change a life, change your own 一点爱心,生命更新

On Sat, it is my turn to work as volunteer at World Vision exhibition. Beside new faces, it is glad to see some old faces, some faces that we meet annually in World Vision event :)

The Queensbay Mall in the early morning, shop not yet open, no crowd. Another volunteer were there early too. This year, the exhibition booth is simpler than last year, published other World Vision sponsors sharing. There are people sponsor more than 10 years, there is one who sponsored 42 children. 勿以善小而不为,勿以恶小而为之. Do what you can do, with faith :)

It is a very good chance to sign up, because we can fill up the form on the spot. If one signed up via online, he/she has to fax the form to World Vision office. Not a lot of people have easy access to fax service. I am not sure if we can email the form instead, always can call to World Vision office for inquiries.

Beside the exhibition, it is a good news for existing donors. They can send a postcard/gift set to their kid! If you have not write to your child for long time, this definitely is convenient.

My postcards to my children.

If you signed up on the spot, pick an apple and stick it to the white color tree of hope. We were so glad by 5pm on Sat, we have got more than 40 new apples. If you are existing sponsor, get the lovely t-shirt at minimum RM 20 donation.

The Nikon girl in action.

At 4pm, child sponsor Jason and Jovi Theng in action.

Ah Bao Ge was invited to shared his experience too, but I missed it, too busy explaining to visitor :)

What does a volunteer do? There are few roles. First is giving flyers, and explain to visitor. There will be some at the signed up counter assist new sponsor to fill up the form, some at souvenir counter, setup/dismantle the booth, etc etc.

Why am I keen in volunteering? I love to spice up the idea of building a kid future. 儿童是未来的栋梁. Malaysia kid is fortunate enough to enjoy clean water, stay in air-cond room, with chance to go to school. There are some, outside our region, walk bare foot to school, live in a plastic cover small cubicle. Love should be spread with no border of country nor religious. 爱是无分国界,肤色。

Beside help promoting a caring society, it also bring some benefit to own. When you are distributing the flyers, you will see a lot of different faces. Some with manners, accepted politely, or rejected with humble smile. Some just ignore you by not looking at you at all, some will show black faces, some will walk far away so you cannot reach them. Which kind of person are you when people give you flyers? I learnt to reply with smiles, regardless if I need the flyers. I learnt to be more humble. I learnt to appreciate people. I learnt to become a human who respect human.

During this exhibition, it was nice to meet few faces. There is one person who regularly go to orphanage and old folks home to help, there are new young donors. I am glad to be able to talk to two student who work part time in a J restaurant. They know about World Vision child sponsorship in radio. They asked me quite a lot of details on how to sponsor, although they can't due to financial limitation. However, I am glad to feel their faith. When I mentioned there is one off donation, immediately one take out RM 20 and ask for nothing in return.有钱没钱,有心就好。有钱有心,当然更好 :) The volunteers here are very glad to explain, although you do not signed up. It is about creating the awareness beside looking for sponsors :) There are 5 countries in need as of today: Africa, India, Indonesia, Myanmar and Thailand.

Their government should have help them! you may think. I thought the same, but for countries with no resources, I will try to help.

See you next year at World Vision booth!

Melbourne trip (Day 4 Story 4) Tim's Place, Halls Gap

We stayed a night at Tim's Place, Halls Gap, Grampians National Park. It cost AUD 70 for a double bed room. There is shared bathroom, shared kitchen, reading corner, shared living room. It is quite a nice place, we got to meet other visitor at the dining table :)

If you see no one in the office, it is fine, look for the instruction to get into your room ;)

Wifi is available but the signal is not too strong. We can't access it in our room.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Melbourne trip (Day 4 Story 3) More on Grampians National Park, Victoria, Australia

We then went to MacKenzie Falls. It is around 30min walk from the car park.

As from the map above, there are two routes. We took the right route.

The MacKenzie Falls, which is moving upstream each year.

It is near sunset, an echina walking home :) I took a video, see if I can share one day, to let you see how an echidna walk, sometimes slowly and sometimes fast.

This is the Wartook reservoir.

What a good idea, cook some hot food in the cold windy environment :)

A kangaroo is having its dinner :) I don't dare to walk near, I wonder it will kick me, or runaway.

So far, I'd visited some national park in US, e.g. Yosemite National Park, Grand Canyon National Park, Death Valley and etc. Although Grampians National Park doesn't has a lot of stunning scenery as those national park mentioned, but it is very different in such a way that I feel I am closer to the nature in this national park, maybe because of the wild life, that lives peacefully with Grampians National Park visitor :) Forgot to mention, for sure, we can get a visitor guide at the visitor center, Halls Gap, Dunkeld, or Brambuk.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Melbourne trip (Day 4 Story 3) Grampians National Park, Victoria, Australia ~ Part 1

Do you love visit national park?

Here I would like to share more on Grampians National Park photo. It is entrance fee free except for campers. There are few entrance to the park. From Warrnambool, we entered the park from Dunkeld.

Drive carefully, wild life is every where, crossing the road, or on/under your car at the parking place :) A crossing road echidna is the first we saw here.

Brambuk National Park & Cultural Center.

Beside Aboriginal cultural information, there are few routes here in Brambuk for you to discover more on nature e.g. wetland flora. For sure my camera non-stop working shooting on the flowers :)

The car park at the cultural center.

Some view in Balconies Lookout. This is reachable at Reed lookout, around 15 min walk, didn't actually time it. It is not far :) Of course, the wind is strong, equipped yourself if not used to cold weather.

If you have more days here, can plan for some walk. I would love to do so but running out of time. I believe the walk in Wonderland would be a very memorable one. One of the visitor we met at hostel spend around 7 days in this national park, by walking! Wait if I can do that, one day :)