Starting today with last night won’t confuse you, right? It seems perfectly normal to me since last night we were surprised with an offer from a friend of Dean’s of two tickets to see a play I knew nothing about: Red by John Logan, an American playwright. A play I should have been well aware of since it won six Tony awards in 2010. It’s about an episode of a Russian/American painter’s life in the late 50’s: Mark Rothko. Only two actors in it. Quite intense and I thoroughly enjoyed it. We went into a pizza place Pizzeria Rio afterwards. The owner is Greek and the pizza was wonderful.
I was not about to let the remainder of my 24-hour double-decker fun go to waste and since I realized Bondi Rd. (a street very close to home) was on the bus’ route, I headed over there. Unfortunately, Citysightseeing Tours stops are not clearly marked –in fact, not marked at all- and I couldn’t find one, so I walked over to Bondi Beach where I knew there was one. Though still on the breezy side it was a lovely day and off I went.
Yesterday I learned that “Bondi” or “Boondi” is an Aboriginal word meaning water or noise of water breaking over rocks. The Australian Museum records show that Bondi means a place where a flight of nullas (nulla being an aboriginal hunting stick) took place. Bondi Surf Bathers’ Life Saving Club is the world’s first surf lifesaving club. After asking around I finally found the Tour Bus Stop but have to wait about 20 minutes before their first pick up at 10:00 am. So I sit on a mosaic bench and stare at the beach. Breeziness turns the temperature to cold. When the bus arrives it takes me up a street I had not been to before. We are headed away from the beach.
We go through an area called Dover Heights which I really liked. Of course it’s one of the most expensive areas in the city. Property values are above $2 million. It’s hard to avoid views of water no matter where you go.
We go back towards the CBD (City Business District) and we pass Woolworths, a store that reminds me of the now defunct Woolworth’s of my youth though this one is essentially a food store.
That’s another bus like the one I’m on and The Sydney Tower Eye I went up on yesterday. It’s a Westfield mall on the first five floors. I love that the buildings here have names. This was one of my favorites. Town Hall, built in 1875 maintains its dignity while being restored by the scaffolding being cloaked with a veil imprinted with its original façade. This Coca-Cola sign is heritage protected. How lucky for Coke that their ad is a historic landmark! After going through city, the bus loop takes me back to where I started. I have to get off since my 24 hours officially end at around 1:00 pm.
It’s quite chilly so I’m craving something warm. I stop at Chocolatería San Churro which caught my attention when I arrived. Touring is serious business and considering the weather, I succumb to a cup of hot chocolate before I walk back home.
Though Sydney people are not exactly friendly and outgoing I love how courteous they are. Something that is reflected even on their mailboxes…
They even give reasons for rejecting things. This photo is out of focus but it’s kind of appropriate it is so.
My artist side was fascinated by a whole window display that started off with an explanation of what art is.
The rest of the window display explained that through the months, a piece of a story would be added and illustrated through found and borrowed objects. I spent a while reading the story and saddened that it also had a good-bye note saying that the storyteller/artist was asked to vacate.
I’m getting hungry and start searching for a reasonable place to eat and find a fish place, The One That Got Away, (half fish market, half fast food restaurant) that has a whole instruction manual on how to order.
As I order a guy asks me where I’m from and starts talking to me. I am surprised by the fact that he is a local, they don’t normally approach you and initiate a conversation. But he was charming. We exchanged some travel stories, he told me about the big Footy (Australian Rules football) that was on and that he was headed out to the stadium.
Today would be a day of conversation. When he left, I approached a couple that were talking in Spanish. He was from Uruguay and she from Argentina. They shared my same thoughts. They were shocked at how expensive Australia was even when they knew it wouldn’t be cheap. They had planned to stay about a month and a half but were returning in a few days after being here a month. The lady on the left was also speaking Spanish to her mom as she fed her. It was obvious that her mom had Parkinson’s. My mom had Parkinson’s and their interaction brought back so many memories. I still miss her so very much.
I still have a ways to go and decide to explore a supermarket and get some things to snack on at home. Found a brand that reminded me of home. 🙂
As I get close to the apartment (flat for Aussies and Brits) the bowling club (lawn bowling for us) is in white.
Australia is a very laid back country. Even the signs take a rest at times… My turn now.