Wednesday, September 02, 2009

First Official Guests

2 weeks ago I had my first official guests from the Philippines stay with us. Although it took me awhile to get the house into tip top shape, Hubby said he'd never seen the house so clean since we first moved in. It also sucked that I had to wake up super early to pick them up at the airport, but seeing them come out of customs with big smiles on their faces was definitely worth it.

They said there seemed to be a show filming while they were going through customs and I told them it must have been Border Security! I love that show! The last time I went through customs there was also a sign saying they were filming. I got all excited but was disappointed when there were no cameras when I got to customs.

We had a great one week doing lot's of catching up. It was great hearing what a lot of my old high school friends were up to in the Philippines and abroad. We even took out our old year book and went through everyone's names. Since we only have 1 car, there were a few days when my guests had to take the tram themselves and explore the city on their own.

In addition to taking a tour on the Great Ocean Road, we also took them to Phillip Island for a day. Thank goodness I did a bit of homework and bought our tickets on-line. We ended up paying $24 each for their 3 Park Pass which gives you access to the Penguin Parade, Koala Reserve and Churchill Island. We drove off a bit past 10 in the morning and arrived around lunch time. We ate at the Nobbies Center which was suppose to have seals hanging out on the rocks outside. But since it was an extremely windy day, there was crud all to see. At least the kids had fun in the playroom and the free soup that came with the passes warmed us up a bit.

Hubby was also extremely excited when he realized there was go kart racing at the island, so we HAD to go. Too bad I wasn't able to take pictures of them actually racing on the circuit.

After the go karts, we went to the chocolate factory. No one has heard of the Panny's brand, but we bought a few bars and they were good! We just didn't want to pay big money to check out the factory itself.

After the factory, we went to the Koala Conservation Centre. I was really happy to finally see a real live Koala up close, but I was even happier to not have paid a separate $10.30 to get in! All it was was a tiny forest-like area with eucalyptus trees. We saw 2 koalas waaaaay up high in the trees that were asleep. They could have been stuffed animals for all we know. But good thing there was one sleeping on a branch on the elevated walkway area. If it wasn't for that one koala, the conservation centre would have been a waste of time.

I wanted my daily dose of caffeine at that point so we drove into Cowes which was the town centre. It was mostly a ghost town with a few shops open. We found a coffee shop and I sat down with the kids for a drink. Thank goodness Nachos was out cold at that point so I was able to enjoy my cup of coffee. Hubby took a phone call at that point and my guests raided the Coles supermarket.

We still had a lot of time to kill at that point before the penguin parade, so we went to Swan Lake which was right next to the parade area. I have to say that was one of the better finds at the island. It was a very pleasant few minute walk to the viewing cabin. The trail was littered with wallabies. Ok, maybe not littered with them, but there sure were quite a few bouncing around us while we walked along the trail. The viewing cabin was small with a wooden panel window which you opened to see the swans. It was very picturesque.

We headed to the Penguin Parade afterwards. I bundled up the kids as much as they would allow me, packed up our snacks and got into position. We weren't allowed to take pictures when the penguins started coming in though, so that sucked. I envisioned this massive exodus of penguins from the ocean but instead saw a splattering of small groups of penguins here and there. We kept sitting there, wondering when this "parade" of penguins would be coming in for their landing but was told a few minutes later that that was it. What?! Well, at least the walk back to the car was abit interesting with random penguin friends walking along side us behind the fence. The only picture I was able to take was this sign as we entered the parking area. Cute.

We didn't even bother going to Churchill Island. That's too bad though, because what if that was the redeeming feature of the island. I guess we won't know for now!

It wasn't all fun and games for my guests during their stay though...

They also worked for their lodging. haha!

I was sad when they had to leave. The kids were really starting to enjoy having guests around to play with. And Hubby and I enjoyed having new blood to chat with in the evenings.

Looking forward to more guests in the future. Who wants to come next?

1 comment:

christao408 said...

Oh, what fun! I'm glad you had your first guests finally. As for the koalas, yes they are a bit unexciting to watch, aren't they?