The request specifically related to my observations on the Ashes given that I am pretty exposed to Aussies and the Aussie press over here. (I will make a few non-cricket related observations later on so for those of you not interested in cricket - look a bit lower)
So Ashes highlights to date include:
- Australia losing two wickets in the time it took me to go up the lift in the office
- local newspapers calling Alastair Cook the weak link prior to the first test
- watching Pietersen and Cook batter them on a big screen whilst drinking beer, eating sushi and soaking up the sun
- having a wager with two UK colleagues against three Aussie colleagues on the outcome of the series for a bottle of premium spirits each (and having seen the prices here that is worth having)
It does go to show that the press over here is as fickle as ours. After day one of the first test England were pretty average and Peter Siddle was a world-beater. Now the team and selectors are in disarray, Siddle is on the verge of being dropped and Cook can't average worse than 50 for the series even if he gets a duck in every innings.
The third test starts this week and I am quietly hoping for a draw. The only reason being that I would like there still to be something to play for when they come to Melbourne for the Boxing Day test. We can then knock them over in three days (ideal as I am there on day three) and win the series and the Ashes again outright.
Non-cricket related observations...........................
We went to the football on Saturday!! Local derby between the two Melbourne teams (Heart & Victory) and a 3-1 Victory victory. About 23,500 there so a bit better than the first game I went to although to be fair the quality of the football wasn't. The first three goals involved dreadful defending including a goal where the keeper put his wall in completely the wrong place for a free-kick. You can drink your beer in your seats though.
Non-sport related observations...........................
I bought a few tickets to local attractions and had to go to the tour office to pick them up and was waiting in the queue browsing flyers when I saw what must be the world's most sought after event. On the morning you go on a tour of the Neighbours set and then in the afternoon/early evening you visit a site where hundreds of little penguins come ashore from being out a sea all day. What's so special about that I may hear you asking. The answer is that the tour guide for the penguin viewing is none other than Alan Fletcher (or for those of you who aren't Melbers or Muzza, Dr Karl Kennedy). All it needs is for Susan Kennedy to be driving the bus and it would be unbeatable.
Apparently IKEA furniture is too complicated for the removal firm to reassemble and they have to hire a £200 handy-man to build it. I think someone should explain the concept of IKEA to them. Anyway it means we have a sofa-bed in pieces until I get round to trying to put it back together myself.
So far the weather here is a little bit crazy - one evening at the end of last week we went from glorious to torrential downpour back to glorious in the space of 30 minutes. Does cause me to look something of a fool occasionally - was coming back on the train from a client today in 29 degrees and not a cloud in the sky carrying my laptop case and PwC umbrella (I'm just a slave to corporate branding).
Anyway this is probably far too long for one blog entry so I will leave it there. I am interested to see whether or not I actually feel Christmas-y at any point (it hasn't really happened yet) but I am sure you will here what we get up to - probably more likely to be from Minda rather than me.