Before arriving in Melbourne I had previously been in contact with a friend of the family living in the city and we had been offered a place to stay for the time we were here.
Right off the bat they were very welcoming and hospitable. Not only did Catherine offer to pick us up off the bus, she also insisted we not worry about groceries or busses. The offer of borrowing their car was also brought up but unfortunately neither of us drive standard and are not quite comfortable to drive in the city on the opposite side of the road.
There generosity is outstanding and its quite wonderful to feel so welcomed. Within no time Catherine, Leigh, Rowan and Gretta felt as though they were family.
After picking up a few groceries anyways with Catherine's assistance we came back to the house unsure of how much we had energy for our first day in Melbourne considering we were on a bus the entire previous night.
There was talk about possibly seeing some of the animals that we had on our checklists. A few suggestions were thrown around and in the end Catherine took us to see the Serendip Sanctuary.
As soon as we drove into the parking lot we spotted a couple emu's. I was very excited to explore the grounds and see which animals they had.
In the end we explored the majority of the center in the hour we had before they closed for the day. The list of animals and birds we saw increased around every corner. Going from dry grassland to marshlands we saw a variety of different birds both large and small.
One of the animals we were not expecting to see were kangaroos and wallaby's but they did end up having a few in the open grassland areas.
Excited and feeling fulfilled with our days activities we returned to the car and headed back for the house.
When we walked in the door Leigh was busy putting the final touches on dinner and the girls were busy setting the placings at the table. We all sat together and discussed over dinner what we had seen and the interesting activities the girls got into while we were gone.
After dinner, Catherine had bought a package of mint slices, a sort of equivalent to our after 8 mint chocolates, although ten times better. I think I have officially found my new favorite dessert.