As the airbed on Mark's floor became deflated we moved into a hostel in the ever so slightly seedy area of King's Cross, where if you're not a prostitute, drug dealer or policeman you're a backpacker or a pigeon. Hitting a highly stressful patch in our travels, we decided to do something that has comforted us across the world; no, not abusing alcohol....gawping at strange animals.
Featherdale Wildlife Park (an hour out of the city) allowed Victoria the opportunity to prod sleeping koalas. It also gave me the chance to actually see my first kangaroo standing up (I mean the Kangaroo on it's feet, not that I have a weird habit of lying down when looking at them). We were also delighted to be able to feed the roos and, due to the open nature of the park, Barnes got to experience the warmth of their poo between her toes. If you ever visit this magnificent place remember not to wear flip-flops. In the event of a faeces related accident, whereby you have to wash your girlfriend's foot in the sink, watch out for the crazy emu who enjoys drinking out of the toilets.
Talking of crap, the form of Sydney FC wasn't good when we took in a game at the Aussie Football Stadium. They turned on the style against Adelaide United and only managed to lose 1-0. Australian football is a bit slow, so much so that rather than a generic fast food outlet staffed by teenagers with dribbly zits the stadium has a variety of cuisine choices, including a chinese restaurant, to keep the fans occupied. Saying that, the 3-2 win against Central Coast Mariners was a really entertaining game.
Somebody, perhaps Cilla Black, once said: 'Never sh*t where you eat'. This advice was hard to follow as we trawled around tiny flats in Sydney's suburbs looking for a place to call home for the next few months. We decided on an apartment in the Croydon-esque area of Petersham. From here we can see all of the major sites of Sydney...if we had a helicopter. However, there is a fetching road sign and 'Rita's Titty Bar' outside. The 'Sham' is a curious place, with a huge Portuguese community known as 'Little Portugal' and in its past was an important kanagaroo hunting area. Hunting kangaroos must have been easy; you could surely just slide them into a sack as they slept. Nowadays you'll find them tucking 5 dollar notes into g-strings at Rita's and nibbling at piri-piri chicken. Luckily in finding a home we never had to resort to Victoria's idea of buttering up random old people with digestive biscuits and Horlicks before asking them if we could live with them.
One of our favourite places is the Rocks, which has an excellent weekend market in the shadows of the Harbour Bridge. Victoria has been walking around writing down all of the things she wants to buy when finances allow. A lot of the stallholders are concerned she might be a market inspector or a contestant on Bargain Hunt. From the Rocks you can hop on a ferry (although just sittting down on it is fine) to Darling Harbour, which resembles Brighton Marina on a larger scale. The highlight of a trip there, if you're fortunate enough to catch it, is an old lady with a dog just missing the ferry back to Circular Quay and calling the Deck-hand a 'miserable sh*t'.
For Your Information:
- We are now Full Temporary Residents of Australia and are both employed; Victoria is mispronouncing Chinese people's names at a marketing company and I've invested in a shovel and bin liner to hunt kangaroos.
- In Aussie, Burger King is inexplicably called 'Hungry Jacks'.
- Border Security - 7.30pm Mondays on Channel 7 - Malaysian students smuggling mushrooms and Arabian beavers stuffed with cocaine. Unmissable TV.
- You smell nice.
Lots of love,
Victoria and Tom xxx