Oops! Forgot again to buy bacon on the way back from the restaurant last night so, while John showered, Brigid nipped into a local gas station for a packet. Once breakfast was cleared away, we checked our e-mail for the last time, and packed our bags.

We had been dissatisfied with the way our internal modem had been behaving with the New Zealand telephone system and, fearing it might be faulty, John was keen to find a computer shop to buy a new PCMCIA-type card. (PCMCIA was once explained to Brigid as “People Can’t Memorise Computer Industry Acronyms”!)

We visited three stores before we found what we were looking for. In the process, we found ourselves in the heart of the main shopping centre on the outskirts of the town. Too late, we had discovered where all the locals did their shopping!

We still had some time to kill before leaving for the airport, so we had lunch and bought a couple of new books for the flight. Then, having re-fuelled the van, we opted to spend the rest of the afternoon in the relative comfort of the business class lounge at Christchurch airport.

We arrived at our hotel in Melbourne a little after 7pm. We were both quite tired, but determined to stay up for a while before going to bed. Neither of us was hungry, so we went for a walk. At the bottom of Little Collins Street, we stood for a while, amused by an eccentric ‘street chess’ contest. Manic-looking players leapt across a giant ‘board’ painted on the pavement (sidewalk) to move the 2 foot high pieces, and then back again to stop the clock. Then we strolled through Melbourne’s shopping centre, out to Spencer Street Station to check on train times to Sydney. At last, after stopping for a coffee, we felt it was a respectable sort of time to go to bed.

We were probably asleep before 10pm …