Hi guys, so sorry it has taken us so long to update this, we have done a lot too so we have written three blogs, and hopefully you’ll read them in the right order so it makes sense!
So then back to Australia day, the day of everything Aussie. BBQs, beer and being arrogant all combined in to a national holiday celebrated more than Christmas! Since returning from the Hunter Valley on the 25th (with no hangovers luckily) we once again decided to stop at our local haunt of Lane Cove a quick bus and train in to the middle of Sydney. Anyone who has experienced an Australia day in Sydney would surely agree that they really do put on a spectacle. Events take place in all parts of the city ranging from live music on floating pontoons to Galleon races at the harbour. Anything that a tourist could possibly want, and this Australia day there were literally millions of tourists there. When we arrived in to Sydney we were instantly given a programme of the events occurring throughout the day. Much to Helen’s delight there was a flyover of a Hawk planned at the Harbour in the afternoon, markets galore in the Rocks area and a fireworks spectacular in the evening. Our day was sort of planned out with those three areas in mind and just filling the gaps in between. So on a sunny afternoon in Sydney we began with the markets in the Rocks, despite some stalls seeming nothing more than a bric-a-brac sale from someone’s garage there were some fantastic exceptions. The first of which we must have spent at least 20 minutes at, a spray can artist was creating some beautiful pictures in a matter of minutes using only spray paint. His works were mainly pictures of space or Australia. Despite the fascination that surrounded this artist (and there were about 50 people standing round him to watch his creations each time) we had to make a move towards the Harbour so we could see the Hawk. We got to a great spot at the ferry docks high up with a perfect view over the harbour and waited in anticipation. Helen had been waiting for this all day. We saw a speck in the distance and as it came closer it was apparent that it was the Hawk. It came thundering towards the Harbour bridge but before it got anywhere near it quickly turned around and flew off again. The crowd stood in wonderment of the true disappointment that was the fly over, if it could be called that. After about 10-15 minutes of wondering if it was going to come back and do it properly this time the crowds began to depart, as did we.
Darling Harbour was the thought and as we were getting hungry it seemed like the place to go, unfortunately as we got there the heavens opened and everyone in Sydney decided to take refuge there for a bite to eat. Packed like a crowd of Derby fans walking out of a rainy Pride Park after they have just been stuffed we all piled in to the nearest shopping centre to keep dry while the rain subsided, it didn’t! For the rest of the day there was a fine drizzle over Sydney and even seeing the top of the sky scrapers was difficult. Luckily we had alcohol on our side! Off we went to a local pub which was inhabited only by us and some people trying to Salsa. Some food and drink later and it was almost time for the fireworks. As this year Australia day had fallen on the same day as Chinese New Year they had added an extra part on to the festivities at Darling to incorporate this, unfortunately this brought even more crowds to the already packed Harbour. As we bustled to get a spot where we had the slightest view and a modicum of shelter they began. Barges floated by with martial artists and women dressed as Geisha, followed by dragon boats and another barge on which some singers were giving their attempt at the national anthem (no not God Save the Queen!). All of this was great but not what the people wanted to see. That was next, the fireworks!!! We tried to do the fireworks justice in the photos but got nowhere near so unfortunately that is all you get, they were stunning though!