Nothing like the essentials to make you feel at home. When trying to make your way around a new country, there are always a few things that are hidden and unseen until you talk to the right person. One thing that had been missing from my Sydney experience was an internet connection for my laptop. As I stated before, I had been using the computers that were available in the lobby for checking my email and trying to hammer out my blog to keep all you fine folks updated. I spoke to man this morning who finally told me where to find the cord to the information super highway! Oh glorious discovery!

I also found out where the coffee and tea maker was so our exploration continues. I suppose that is an indication of how busy we have been since we checked into this hotel, when it takes three days to find the coffee maker. Now that I can upload some pictures for you, I can fill you in…

Day1 ( 1-1-2010)

After taking showers and changing clothes we were ready to explore Sydney. So I put on a pair of sneakers and JD put on a pair of sandals and off we go.

We all wish for money to fall from the sky… Well I found some hanging just out of my reach.

After realizing I’m simply not THAT tall we pressed on.

I’m finding that more than one photo doesn’t want to work individually, so I’m going to type everything and you can see the pictures below.

Like a lot of big cities there are beautiful statues and fountains everywhere. I always enjoy artwork al la street so please take a look at the various ones I have take photos of.  They are all different types. Some are very old and some are fairly new. Thats one thing about Sydney that we noticed. The old mixed with the new makes a beautiful city and it’s everywhere you look. The city has also done a great job of keeping its old trees. I have never seen such big trunks in the heart of a city before and that to the charm of the city.

We pressed on and came across an Opal Museum. Below is a picture of JD checking out the display out front. Opal is the national stone here and we have heard fairly easy to find if you know what to look for. Unfortunately the museum was closed but they had a gift shop that was open and we perused the lovely stones. When we asked about finding stones in the location passed on to us by a friend, the gentleman scoffed at us and was a quite a bit snooty if you ask me. That’s ok if he doesn’t know where to find them other than the three major mine areas. We’ve got our sources.

We kept on walking and before long we could see the Sydney Harbor. We came across two main attractions here. The Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbor Bridge. The Opera House is a beautiful structure and although we didn’t visit the inside, it was a kick to visit just the outside after seeing all the pictures over the years. I hadn’t heard much about the Sydney Harbor Bridge but apparently people can walk up and over the arch of the bridge! In fact you might be able to pick out the little bumps in the picture. I have been told this is on the list of things that we are going to do and frankly I’d rather eat glass. Maybe I will tell JD that I have to stay on the ground and take pictures of him walking it. Since these are big tourist attractions they have all sorts of shops and other attraction there. You can ride in a jet boat in the harbor or listen to the music of the Aborigines. The picture I have below shows a native using a didgeridoo (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Didgeridoo). It sounds very mystical and looks more than a little difficult to play.

It is certainly odd to see everyone driving on the wrong side of the road, from the wrong side of the car even though I was prepared to. There must be quiet of few people who have visited, and not being accustomed to which way to look, stepped out in to traffic being picked off by the locals. Every cross walk tells you to look right. See an example below. Yes it has come handy more than once.

I wasn’t really expecting to see any odd animals right off the bat since I hadn’t heard about kangaroos and koala bears roaming the streets. However I did see this unusual bird that I knew had to be an Ibis (see photos). Sure enough, a little internet search helped me to identify them as the Black-headed Ibis. So gorgeous and elegant (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black-headed_Ibis)!

 Then we found an area of Sydney called Woolloomooloo. It reminds me a lot of the Fan in Richmond or Ghent in Norfolk. Very cute row houses and people walking their dogs. (see photos)

 On the plane ride over we heard, on a show that played, that a Sydney favorite was Harry’s meat pies. So we asked some of the locals where the small place could be found and off we went. Oddly enough, JD will be working very close to where these are! One thing we both agree on is, thank goodness for all the walking from place to place that we will be doing while living here or we will be 400 pounds. All the food we come across is visually enticing and even better tasting. The recommended meat pie is the original “Tiger” meat pie (see photos). It consists of a beef meat pie topped with a scoop of mashed potatoes, a scoop of mashed peas, and drowned in gravy. Good? Nay nay bunny rabbit. They are the bomb! They have all sorts of pictures of the celebrities that have visited this little establishment, three being Pamela Anderson. Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t she a vegetarian? Well Pamela, we know your dirty little secret. Our spies reach every corner of the globe now…

Right next to Harry’s is a post with the directions and distance to major cities. Good to know where NYC is in case of emergency. Bangkok is also duly noted. After filling our bellies and rejuvenating our souls with Tigers we came across the harsh reality that we had to climb stairs to get back to the hotel (see photo). I asked JD for a piggy back ride but was met with a look of disbelief and stoney silence. I couldn’t see what the problem was.

After giving up my search for Sherpas and finally climbing the stairs we passed a store that had a sign that caught my eye (see photo). Indeed this season IS bursting with possibilities.

It’s time for us to eat, so Day 2 is coming up soon!

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