Hayley and I have been enjoying our time off relaxing and sight seeing. Melbourne is big and there is plenty to see and to eat. Food and wine is plentiful here. Just about any type of cuisine is available along with all kinds of fusion food of the highest level. We both enjoy our food and haven't been disappointed. The first few days was nice and sunny in the high 20's. Very nice. Then the rain hit. Lots of rain. Flooding everywhere.
In a span of about half an hour 40 mm of rain fell in the area of Melbourne where we were. As parts of the city can be hilly we had to navigate through some nasty puddles. Then we came across a dip in the road that had a rather large puddle in it. Cars stopped, traffic jams grew. We saw cars drive across the median to the other side of the road going the other way. That looked pretty risky, seeing wheels spinning and due to the downpour you couldn't see very much, never mind on coming traffic. We also saw cars driving through this ever growing 'lake', and making it to the other side. All that tried succeeded and we so no reason to suspect one could fail. So we bit the bullet and moved Rodger
(the name Hayley's family had given the white Holden Astra) towards 'the great highway ocean'. All seemed fine, Rodger didn't complain when water rose up and over his
radiator grill. Half way our nautical adventure all went quite. Electrics and lights worked but the engine would sail no further. There we sat, in a massive downpour with cars passing us and being slammed by their wake. It would be just a matter of time before water would start to rise through the foot wells. Then this bloke, barefoot and in shorts, ran across the highway from is van and knocked on the window shouting, "Do you want a push?". We just stared at him, still embarrassed and shocked that we'd just killed Rodger. Then I blurted out, "Yeah, sure". He waded to the back of the car and we where on the move again. I didn't get out until the water had subsided past the door opening. I took over and we soon found 'dry' land.
Still in a awkward position on the road we decided that I would push on a bit further so we could make a right hand turn across the oncoming traffic to a nearby fitness club car park. That sounded like a wonderful plan.
Once at the car park soaked and out of breath we tried to revive Rodger but still no luck. So we arranged for Hayley's dad to come pick us up. While waiting we bumped in to some Aussie blokes coming out of the fitness club having a laugh. "Hey, did you guys see that white Astra floating down the mountain highway?" I said, now I started to see the funny side, that we had made it safely to the car park.
The next day after the RACV guy had a look at the car we found out what I had feared. Water in the engine. To what extent we still have to find out, but it's safe to say that we had killed Rodger stone dead.
We weren't the only ones to suffer from this ferocious weather and in hind sight we have been fortunate that we didn't suffer worse.
Since then we've been able to drive Ashley's (Hayley's brother) old car Dougie
(an old Honda Civic) to see some more sights. More on that in my next post.