01.11.2007 - almost three months in Sydney…and probably not that much to tell you all. After a painful first week of flat hunting we found our dream home at 3502 Pitt Street, right in the centre of the city complete with swimming pool, gym, jacuzzi, mini golf and table tennis not to mention the balcony 35 floors up with views of sky tower, harbour and bridge (although you can only just see the bridge through gaps in other sky scrapers its still worth boasting about!!) We lived with two other couples, Tina and Kevin from Ireland and Katrina and Titi from Hungary who we spent most of our time with having flat parties and generally drinking a lot (as can be seen from our pics!) But to be fair we were all working through the week so had to enjoy ourselves at the weekends…and most week nights!
Kate got a job in the Sydney Harbour Marriott doing bar and waitress work and Ed worked for a construction recruitment agency doing everything from working on building sites, to building jail cells, being a removal man and even a landscape gardener (so all you guys that have just purchased your new homes, once Eds finished your plastering he can give your garden a make over too!)
We weren't earning the best money, around $20 an hour which is about eight quid, so not bad for the work we were doing, but didn't exactly manage to save anything up either?! It paid the rent and provided beer money though so it was well worth it!
So Sydney, not exactly anymore special than any other city, apart from its much warmer, the Harbour Bridge and Opera house are pretty amazing and the beaches were only a 20 minute bus journey. It was great living right in the centre with everything in walking distance, especially having bars, clubs, seven elevens and MacDonalds right outside our front door…what more could you want!
Christmas was very strange, we got a tree and loads of decorations up in our flat but we still didn't have that 'Christmas feeling'! We had hoped to spend the day on the beach but as it was overcast ended up staying in watching Home Alone (excellent xmas film) sitting in our jacuzzi then going to a barbeque later on. The strangest thing had to be as we walked round the city that afternoon looking for a bottle shop, all pubs, bars and anywhere to buy alcohol were shut, yet all clothes shops including the video shop and even the hair dressers were open…and most depressing of all people were actually getting their hair done on CHRISTMAS DAY! How wrong is that!
On the other hand, New Years Eve was definitely better than being at home in the Angel or Fusion. We met up with Damian, Sally, Simon and Gina from back home and all celebrated in style at a bar called Ocean Room right at the front of the harbour with all the food and drink you could handle (and as you can see from the pics Damian and Sally possibly had a little too much!) The fireworks were amazing but the weirdest thing was there wasn't a countdown, so we actually missed the second the clock struck 12, but once we realised we had we shouted out our own drunken countdown to make up for it.
We didn't really feel like tourists whilst being 'Sydney Siders' but did manage to ride the Monorail, go to botanical gardens, the aquarium, Australia museum, couple of trips to the beaches of Coogee, Bondi and Manley and many trips down to the Opera house and Harbour Bridge.
By the beginning of January, after the departure of Damian and Sally, we realised that we were ready to get on the move again. We booked our 'Wicked' campervan, and hit the road again on 21st Jan to tour up the east coast towards our final Australian destination - Cairns! Looking forward to seeing some of the real Australia outside of a city and after being in the country for almost three months and not having seen a kangaroo or koala yet is pretty depressing!
So sorry for the rather boring account of Sydney, the stories from the road trip should be a hell of a lot more entertaining!