Melbourne ViewsI know that the title sounds like some unsigned band we might have gone to see – “Melbourne and the Doctors” but, regrettably, it is a literal description of the places we have been today.

I have been feeling pretty rough now for the last 10 days and haven’t been able to shake off a bad throat. It had finally got bad enough for me to make a visit to the doctors. In all the years I have been going abroad this is the first time that I have had to seek out local medical help. So I made an appointment with the local surgery.

The appointment was for lunchtime so first we headed off to town to take a look. A short train ride in and then into a shopping centre on the site of an old lead shot factory. Rather than knock it down the shops had been built around the building and it glass roof put over it. It was incredibly impressive. We then walked down to Federation Square taking in the sights before hopping back on the train to get back to see the Doctor.

I arrived  for my appointment in plenty of time. A full hour later and 45 minutes after I was due to be seen this little old lady appears calling my name – this was my doctor and, it appeared, the only doctor on duty to keep the four admin staff company. The Doctor sounded as if she had come direct from Transylvania and I her best Boris Karloff impression first enquired about my problem and then asked:

“Any fever?”

“No”, I replied.

“Any cough?”

“Yes, but that has cleared up now.”

“and any fever?”

“No”, I replied.

“Has anyone else in the family been ill?”

“Yes”, I replied

“and any fever?”

I was beginning to detect a pattern here but I wasn’t going to be caught out that easily. I can imagine what would have happened should I carelessly have answered yes to that question. She would have been pressing the big red “Swine Flu” button on her desk and I would have been carried away to be quarantined.

As it was I was sent away with a bill for $65 (about £32) and a prescription for some anti-biotics. I am looking forward to them kicking in and me being able to get on with the holiday.

Finally, this evening, we went to one of the top restaurants in Melbourne, Donovans. It must have been one of the most family friendly places on earth as the kids were provided Jenga to play with. Jenga! At a posh restaurant!


More views of Melbourne (but not the doctors)