Saturday, October 07, 2006

Home in Sydney

16th - 21st of September 2006

Final stop in Oz... Sydney - for the fourth time!

It felt right when the plane started it's descent, and the lights of Sydney by night started to appear. Felt like coming home actually :-) Just like the past three times in Sydney, I chose to stay at Base Backpackers in the CBD, which gives you pretty much everything within walking distance.

Spent the first couple of days enjoying that I was back! It was actually awesome to be back in Sydney. Having spent about a month in the city, I know the area and know where all the spots I like are :) So I spent the most of my time seeing it all again, went to some of the few million shops, browsing for books, comics and stuff, and just enjoyed how much this beautiful city has to offer (maybe I should start writing tourist brochures?).

On top of that, the weather was really good! Obviously not hot like tropical Darwin, but surprisingly hot compared to the fact that spring had barely started. First morning we had about 24 degrees, which kept going for a couple of days until we reached 28 degrees! As I had expected to freeze my arse off, I was quite happy with the weather :O) This called for a trip to Bondi Beach! So the next day, I went there with Miangaly, a French/Madagascan girl from my room. This being very early spring, you would expect a beach to be quite empty... But no, Bondi was crowded as always, and the waves were big as always, so the surfers were there... as always :) The water was freeeeezing compared to Darwin, but it was kind off like going to the beach in Denmark in the summer :-D Hehe.

Despite the fact that I've spent quite a bit of time in Sydney, I still had some stuff left to do! One of them was the famous Bondi to Coogee walk. So Mia and I started walking, a bit late in the afternoon though, so it turned too dark to get proper pictures though... Sorry! But the walk was stunning! You could sit there for hours watching the waves hit the rocks... Both of us decided to buy one of the apartments when we win the lottery :O) After quite a long, but enjoyable walk we jumped on a bus back to the CBD and our hostel. We went out at night, started out in picturesque Darling Harbour. After a feed in Chinatown, I gave Mia a tour around the colourful quarter of Kings Cross. We had a good laugh at all the funny people, pressed our noses flat against the windows of the Ferrari showrooms and went for a walk in the old red-light district before going to the Empire Hotel for a couple of drinks.

Next day we went on the compulsory highlight when you're in Sydney, which is also my personal favourite: Sydney Harbour! Even though I've been here about seven times, I still get blown away by the sight of the harbour at night, with the bridge, all the lights and of course the Opera House. Oh, by the way - we went to the Sydney Museum of Contemporary Art as well! Some of the stuff was really nice and interesting, and some of it was a load of bullsh*t, as contemporary art tends to be sometimes. For instance exhibition of plasma screens showing random video clips from a bathroom. What a talented artist... Took one picture to prove how ridiculous it was before I was asked not to take photos. Maybe they could have made it a bit more interesting by having some women in the shower or so... But no. You have to be on some special kind off drugs to understand that kind of "art" I guess :O)

Mia left the next day, and I decided to go for a ride on the monorail, since I forgot to check it out the last three times I was here... Hehe. It was all right, good views of Darling Harbour etc., but I did find myself wondering how they can afford to keep it going when there's only about one kilometer from the first to the last stop. Being completely restless in the evening, I went to the Sydney Imax to redeem a few vouchers. Saw a quite cool 3D movie about Africa and another documentary called Deep Sea 3D, narrated by Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet, which was quite good as well. Before heading back to Base I had my last kebab - probably not a whole lot of kebab in Asia :O)

To be honest with you... I was completely sentimental on my last day in Sydney, my last day in Australia! I couldn't believe that I was about to leave the country... My second home :) All I did was walk around the city feeling really weird... Went to the gym for about an hour, grabbed my stuff from the locker and jumped on the airport shuttle. When I got to the airport I realized that I still had the axe attached to my backpack (I was going to pass it on to Nick and Zac, but forgot about it when I left them :S), so I looked for backpackers who just arrived. Obviously no luck since I was in the departure terminal, so I found one of the shuttle bus drivers and asked him to drop it of at a hostel or ask if someone with a camper van or so needed it. No need to ask though, because I had only found the new owner! The nice bus driver was so happy that he just got an axe for free, he shook my hand several times and drove away with a big smile on his face. So OJ and Devo... The axe lives on! Let's just cross our fingers that he doesn't kill anyone with it, since it has our names written on it ;-)

Anyway, my very last hours in Australia... Spent quite a lot of time in a massive queue at the Austrian Airlines desk (rubbish flight company), and got a middle seat even though I arrived early :( Last thing I did in Australia was go to the Virgin shop in the terminal, and listen to the new Audioslave album, which seems to be pretty damn good! So... I bid Australia farewell for now and boarded the plane, still not believing that I was about to leave the country I love. Seven months have passed unbelievably fast, and I've the time of my life. I gotta find myself an Aussie wife and get a PR :O)

So long, Aussieland... I'll be back as soon as possible ;-)