Upon arrival in Brisbane we had a ten minute walk to our bright orange hostel near the city centre. Whilst garish the colour did mean it was very difficult to miss! We dropped off our bags and went for a wander into the city centre with Sam, who had to wait 5 hours for his flight. Brisbane is only a small city but my first views were very positive - not at all swayed by the fact I was relieved to be back in civilisation and no longer 100s of miles from the nearest supermarket. Now don't get me wrong, eating street food in Asia and shopping in markets is all part of the fun, but most of all it is CHEAP! The small family run supermarkets in the middle of nowhere in Australia, on the other hand, have ridiculously inflated prices and the relief I felt at not paying 3 dollars for a red pepper was palpable!
Back to Brisbane, after a short walk into the city centre where we saw a band playing an impromptu set in a little park - some kind of street music festival was on - and admired some bizarre kangaroo sculptures made out of old engines, we made our way to Southbank, where Nina and I seemed to spend most of our time the remaining 2 days in the city. It's a lovely area, and where the museums, art gallery, big wheel and park is, all very cultured don'tcha know. Our evening was spent watching Men in Black 3 at the cinema as a bit of a treat, I mean you have to spoil yourself with some Will Smith every now and again!
The next day we decided to go back down to Southbank and get some culture at the museum, or at least the free parts, of which there weren't many but we whiled away a half hour or so. The rest of the day was spent wandering around the city, through Southbank and finding out that cyclists in Brisbane evidently ride really fast as everywhere we looked there appeared to be gigantic SLOW signs everywhere. Very bizarre.
Whilst I had a lovely time in Brisbane - the city is easy to get around, not too large, plenty of shops and nice sculptures dotted about - there isn't much there to actually do so our last day was spent watching films in the big cinema room in the hostel (swanky!) before getting the 5pm bus down to Sydney, another 15 hour bus journey we weren't particularly loking forward to, but our last in Australia so we weren't too upset about it.
This all changed however when we got on the bus to find there were no lights for the first hour for some reason (I think the driver forgot to turn them on…) then it turned out as it started getting colder that the heater was broken. So Nina and I got to spend 15 hours so freezing cold we couldn't sleep. It was a very closely run second for worst bus journey of my life after the Laos-Vietnam debacle.
Driving over the Sydney Harbour Bridge made it all worthwhile though, I never thought I'd be seeing such an international landmark and it was exciting to finally get to Australia's best known city.