42 degrees - love
Trip Start Nov 20, 2013
154Trip End Ongoing
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We originally had tickets for Thursday evening for centre court, but on Wednesday morning we decided to get ground passes for the day. After a day of getting information about what to do in Melbourne and walking around the downtown core of the city on Tuesday, we also learned that there weren't many matches scheduled to happen Thursday evening. It was a great decision we made. The ground passes allowed us access to every court except Rod Laver (the main centre court) and the second largest court, Hisense. We started our morning watching some big name tennis pros practicing. Starting at 11:30am we saw Maria Sharapova, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, and Rafael Nadal
After watching all these practices, we decided it was time for some matches. We saw Richard Gasquet, the ninth seed, beat his opponent. We watched a women's match that went on for a very long time and became very exciting towards the end. The winner of that played Serena Williams in the third round and lost, but she played hard to get there. We were able to see some Canadians play as well. First we saw Daniel Nestor, a well known Canadian doubles player. Next, we watched Sharon Fichman, a young player from Forest Hill, practicing on a small court. We chatted with her very briefly after she complained about how hot it is because she's from Canada. Even though she was extremely hot and probably couldn't wait to go cool off, she still gave us her time for a quick picture. We watched her doubles match later in the day. Unfortunately, her and her partner lost the match. The next Canadian we saw was Eugenie Bouchard, Canada's top female tennis player and ranked 30 in the world. Her match was interesting as there were many loud and fun Canadians cheering for her through songs and chants.
By the time we were ready to leave, it was already after 8:30pm. Although we had bought groceries, we realized by the time we got back to the house we are staying at and cooked dinner, we wouldn't eat until around 10pm
Yesterday was another day of tennis. We were planning on going around 5pm, which is when our tickets allowed us access, but matches were being postponed because of the extreme heat. We went back to the central business district to the Australian Centre for Moving Images, which we've heard great things about. Since we got there only about an hour before it closed, we just spent a bit of time in one of their viewing booths, instead of starting to visit the galleries. These booths have comfortable seats, a flat screen TV, and sets of headphones. The TVs are touch screen and offer all different genres to view or listen to, mostly Australian content. We watched an episode of the old game show Blind Date and started another game show before we had to leave for closing time. The air conditioning in the building gave us a nice break from the constant perspiration we were experiencing. We figured it would be best to eat before heading to the Australian Open since everything is crazy overpriced in the park. Logically we headed back to the sushi restaurant we ate at on Wednesday. Again, it was delicious and very filling and again we were able to get 10% off.
Since the earlier matches were delayed because of the heat, we were in time to watch Milos Raonic's match
At this point it was time to head to Rod Laver Arena anyway and we got there just in time to escape the pouring rain that came quickly. The first match was a really good one between two ladies, one was Victoria Azarenka, the second seed in the tournament. Her opponent gave her a tough run at it though with some really great shots. They had closed the roof of the building earlier in the day because the crazy heat, but later on it became extremely humid and much hotter in the building
It was really fun to walk around the grounds and see so many great matches. We felt sorry for the players though, since just spectating was making us very hot and sweaty. We enjoyed the heat, but sitting wasn't the most comfortable thing to do. Jason and I refilled our water bottle at least a dozen times throughout our first day here and almost as many times the yesterday.