My next stop was in the ultra cool Byron Bay. Unfortunately the weather here wasn't great and instead of spending all my time on the beach I spent most of it wandering round the cool array of shops resisting the temptation to buy loads of pointless souvenirs and gaining some cheap second hand warm clothes in preperation for New Zealand. I did however managed to get weather decent enough to allow me to cycle to the famous Byron Bay lighthouse, where I looked out and saw wild dolphins. One morning was particularly eventful when I woke up to find my right eyelid was swollen and I could barely open that eye...slightly worrying...so I was soon off to Hospital for the 3rd time of my trip only this time I was wearing sunglasses. Luckily it was no big deal, just a reaction to a mosquito bite under my eyebrow, I took some drugs and by the end of the day I looked almost normal again and was sitting on the overnight Greyhound bus heading to Sydney to meet Jony and the rest of the Watson Jones'.
Of course when I arrived there Jonny was somewhere else and took a bit of finding but eventually we were reunited and admiring the opera house and harbour bridge under the overcast sky from a ferry. Back at their apartment Jony and Helen introduced me to draw something with Jony clearly already addicted. That evening we met up with Katie at a Thai restaurant and I was able to impress them with my new found love for trying food. However I drew the line when Jony tried to persuade me to eat a whole chilli. During dinner I somehow volunteered myself and Jony to join Katie for a rather ambitous run and at 6:30AM the next morning we sleepily jogged to meet Katie and set off in convoy along the picturesque coastline from Coogee to Bondi, which had a hell of a lot of steps. We had a quick moment to take in the view once we reached Bondi before we reluctantly set off on the final half of our run back to Coogee, with myself leading the way and taking the wrong route on more than one occassion.
After a quick dip in the refreshingly cool pool we went for a well deserved Brekkie before Jony, Helen and I went for an ant infested walk through Centineal Park to see their famous black swans. We met Katie again later and headed into Sydney city centre where we visited the Rocks market where we met Till before climbing one of the towers of the harbour bridge...just what I needed...more steps...the panoramic views of the city were worth it though. Then we walked on heavy legs to Darling Harbor before Jony, Helen and I caught the wrong bus back to the flat. We were soon out the door again to do some more walking into town to meet Katie and some friends for our last dinner together.
My last day with the Watson Jones' started with an hour long walk to a neighbouring town for breakfast before we headed back to the apartment where Jony and Helen packed and we said our goodbyes. I was fortunate enough to stay in their flat another night and certainly wasn't going to be walking anywhere so I watched crocodile dundee in the lounge with a new found appreciation for Aussie's since my trip.
The next morning I crazily repeated the 10mile coastal run followed by a dip in the swimming pool before sadly packing my backpack and moving on to a local hostel situated above Maccys in town. I then visited the Sunday Market in Bondi where I found some more bargain clothes. My last day in Sydney was spent indoors due to the miserable weather before catching my flight to the even more dyer weather in Melbourne.
Comically my bag appeared on the conveyer belt in Melbourne with a bright orange tag stating "HEAVY ASSISTED LIFT MAY BE REQUIRED" haha. Due to the freezing weather my few days in Melbourne weren't the most exciting. The highlight being watching the Anzac day parade as hundreds of people marched in plastic ponchos holding banners, flags and playing instuments.
And so I left the cold and rain of Australia for the cold of New Zealand...