Showing posts from November, 2009

A reason, a season or a lifetime

On the eve of Mom's trans-Pacific flight home, we returned to Circular Quay. We willfully decided to forgo a decadent $14 slice of cheesecake. Instead, Mom & I headed to the IMAX theatre. Since Harry Potter 6 was not yet released we bought tickets for "Under The Sea 3-D". Coincedentally the movie was filmed partly in The Great Barrier Reef! I was surprised to learn:

* Sea Snakes are very deadly.
* Turtles can actually eat Jellyfish, but close their eyes during this process.
* Great White Sharks sometimes hunt Stingrays out of desperation.
* there were only 2 types of Sea Dragons (Leafy & Weedy, which I saw at The Sydney Aquarium the day before!) The time arrived to bid farewell to my partner in crime & perfect travel companion on my Australian adventure. Although 25 years old, my eyes still welled up atjust the thought of goodbye. I sat alone in the domestic terminal and envisioned my Mom in the international mega-terminal. The quietness and loneliness felt p…


Who knew the world's largest aquarium was in my backyard?

FIRST STOP: SYDNEY AQUARIUM Mom & I had a tough time getting a clear view of platypi at Carnarvon National Park so I was pleased the aquarium had an exhibit for us to see one up close. The busy platypus never held still long enough for me to snap a decent photograph, but Mom thought it was so interesting we stayed for 30 minutes just observing as the other visitors moved on. There was a 20 foot oceanarium that depicted The Great Barrier Reef & had suspended walkways so people could view the sea floor below and endless waves above. There was always a lot of action going on at once -- I don't think I saw half of the fish that resided in the massive tank. Nonetheless, Mom & I were captivated. We watched the marine animals and plants carry on uninterrupted in their simulated natural environment.

I really respect the Sydney Aquarium's approach to housing the larger animals. Those creatures were kept in 3 ocean-…

The good life

The last two weeks were spent sleeping on hard ground, secluded in nature with the only evening light coming from the moon or a travel-sized flashlight. Since it was another overcast, rainy day (New South Wales' winters are nothing like the sunny, comfortable winters of Queensland) Mom & I relished in the luxury of the Marriott and watched the Davis Cup in our pajamas while we ate breakfast in bed. FIRST STOP: HYDE PARK
In the daylight the park seemed even more prestigious. The Possums & homeless man from the night before had vanished, but we discovered more & different features as we strolled away from the hotel. The paths were lined with massive trees (I wish I knew their names). Branches, vines and roots, all stretched vertically by gravity & time, created an artistic look and made the tree seem like it was straight from the pages of Sleepy Hollow. Close to our hotel was a gold-plated building that resembled a large mausoleum with a lengthy reflecting pool -- re…


I was thrilled 1) that my head didn't explode on the plane from the added pressure and 2) to be in Sydney!

My generous Mom let me have the window seat since she got a great birdseye view flying into the country internationally. Upon touchdown I spotted a vibrant rainbow above the control tower -- that has to be a good sign, right? I was long overdue for authentic sushi, so we got word from a local to try Sushi-E, although he claimed it was a bit of a hike. Compared to our last hiking excursions, the flat terrain & distance to the restaurant was -- literally & figuratively -- a walk in the park. Sushi-E was a swanky lounge scene complete with dim lighting and couches/ottomans in the bar area. My sushi mantra: try rolls customized to the establishment. I opted for the "chicken kara age roll" which boasted teriyaki chicken, sweet omelette, darling mills cress & pepper cream, rolled inside out with jasmin rice (don't worry, the chicken was not raw). It was a p…