15 April 2010

Down Under 2010: Two Ways

Australian pride and honor abounds. MidwestGeo had the privilege in March to conduct a course in Melbourne with 60 attendees traveling from across the continent and New Zealand too.   It was our honor to have the opportunity to meet the attendees and work shoulder-to-shoulder with them during the 3-day educational experience.

This year's course was dedicated to Advanced Aquifer Testing Techniques taught by Jim Butler and Glenn Duffield.  Jim and Glenn are fun instructors in the classroom and out of it too (that's Peter Gringinger and Susan pictured with the Dynamic Duo, Jim and Glenn - showing off biceps).

One of the unexpected surprises during the visit to Melbourne was a International Invitational Track Meet located only a few blocks from our downtown hotel.  Thankfully Jim Butler brought this event to my attention during breakfast on the day of the Meet and I was able to attend that evening.

The reason for my unbridled excitement was to watch the pole vault event featuring Steve Hooker who is the 2008 Bejing Olympic Gold Medalist and the current Olympic Record Holder (and from Australia).   What seems like now a lifetime ago, I once found a small bit of success pole vaulting but I never stopped admiring those athletes, especially the world class men and women pole vaulters.  It was another honor for me to briefly meet Steve Hooker after the Meet where is final clearance was his opening height (5.65M / 18'7").

Post-course activities landed us at the Great Barrier Reef.  Down under the water was the second way this trip took us there. Snorkeling and underwater exploration among the endless variety of coral and fish was beyond anything I had prepared for the experience.

Thanks to the crew at both the Crowne Plaza in Melbourne and the InterContinental Hotel in Sydney for their special accommodations and attention.  IHG hotels give us yet another reason we look forward to returning.

We are pleased to recommend these hotels:
InterContinental Sydney
(located two blocks from Sydney Opera House)
117 Macquarie Street, Sydney
NSW, 2000, Australia
Phone: +61-2-9253 9000

Crown Plaza Melbourne
(located adjacent to the World Trade Center)
1-5 Spencer Street, Melbourne
VIC,  3005, Australia
Phone: +61-3-9648 2776