The iconic Flinders Street Station, Melbourne
I was privileged to attend the 4th Annual Elder Abuse Conference in Melbourne on 24/25 February 2016. The well attended conference was organised by Seniors Rights Victoria and held at the Pullman Melbourne on the Park (formerly the Hilton Hotel). My accommodation was only a few blocks away, and only a stone’s throw from the “G” (Melbourne Cricket Ground)!
Unfortunately my flight was running a little late, I stepped off the plane to 40 degree heat and a westerly wind, there was a problem with my shuttle bus, and the peak hour traffic through the city of Melbourne was horrific, so when I arrived at my accommodation I felt like a grease spot and it was too late to get changed and walk to the Pullman for the Welcome to delegates. So instead I had a Chinese takeaway and an early night to prepare for two days at the conference.
Captain Cook’s Cottage in Fitzroy Gardens
The main speakers on the first day were the Honourable Senator George Brandis, Attorney General, and Susan Ryan the Aged Discrimination Commissioner and Disability Discrimination Commissioner. Both of these excellent speakers agreed that elder abuse was a human rights issue, that we need a National Secretariat to co-ordinate and to drive and enforce prevention, and the involvement of all stake holders is essential including older Australians. There were some great speakers from the USA and Canada and we can learn from some of their innovative ideas. So very sad that elder abuse is a worldwide problem, and something must be done about it.
The Conference Dinner was held in the Tom Wills room at the MCG, and I had the opportunity to join a guided tour of this massive structure prior to the dinner. We were taken down to stand on the “hallowed turf” of the ground, we saw the interior practice nets and gyms, the change rooms, the media room (left), the entrance from which the players emerge, and the Long Room for the exclusive use of Members of the MCG. Dinner was pretty good too!
After the completion of the conference on the second day I had the opportunity of trying out a Japanese restaurant at Fitzroy with a friend – best Japanese food I have ever had (sorry, no photographs!)
Glorious display in the tourist-crowded Conservatory, Fitzroy Gardens
I had an afternoon flight home, so had an opportunity in the morning to wander through Fitzroy Gardens (the Conservatory is just beautiful), Treasury Gardens, down Wellington Street past Federation Square and Flinders Street Station, to Swanston Street for a coffee.
Diana and the hounds at the entrance to the Conservatory (left) and part of the JFK memorial in the Treasury Gardens
I love the old Town Hall, and was surprised to see it now has vegetable gardens set up outside, growing tomatoes, corn, herbs, cabbages, marigolds and nasturtiums and it seems there are other vegetable gardens throughout the city, fabulous idea.
Murals in Hosier Lane (left) and vegetable gardens established outside the Town Hall
No problems on the way home, shuttle bus on time, casual late lunch at the airport, and plane left and arrived on time. Wonderful few days in the beautiful city of Melbourne enjoying the sights, learning so much at the conference, networking and meeting up with friends. Still nice to be home though!
Crochet sleeves for trees in Wellington Street (right)
The striking Federation Square