Friday, February 13, 2015

Australia: Sydney, NSW

Rainy day at Macquarie Point.

Australia is far, far away from anywhere I had ever been before.  Australia is really big.  Australia has summer in January.  Australia has stars I had never seen before, and trees and plants and animals I had never seen before, and birds I had never heard or seen before, and clean, white beaches.  Australia has a few spiders, but they kept to themselves while we were visiting.

Sydney is a clean, well-dressed city.  Sydney has a large number of people who go running during the hottest part of the day, on their lunch breaks.  Sydney has proteinacious brekkie spots (thanks in part to Sydney's blossoming hipster culture) where you can enjoy eggs on toast every morning, a giant, free botanical garden with plenty of shade, and a spacious reading room across the street, if you are the sort who goes on vacation and then spends half a day at the library.  Sydney has saltwater swimming pools with 50 meter lanes that cost about $5 to use.  Sydney is pretty expensive, although not like Norway-expensive.  In Sydney, it seems, one cannot buy a bad coffee (thanks in part to Sydney's blossoming hipster culture).

Pictures for you:

A Noisy Miner, mining for orange juice.

I could support a botanical garden with a sense of humor...

Sum kinda gum tree.  Iron bark?  Blackbutt?  That's a real name.

I don't know what it is, but I like it.

We saw Eddie Izzard, and he was predictably great.

That library I mentioned.

On the ferry to Manly.  Big ol' 3-meter swells where the harbor meets the ocean.

Classic walk from Bondi to Bronte beaches.

Work folk.

They were wide.

Bondi to Bronte, gettin' on toward sunset.
A photog, going for some fancy spray shots at Bronte.

Water dragon, different day, hiking around the harbor by the zoo.

More pictures for you!  All from the Sydney Royal Botanical Gardens this time, because I took many photos there.  NSFA (Not Suitable for Arachnophobics):

A netcasting spider, I think... among the waterlilies, anyway.

This is a St. Andrew's Cross spider... and they like the Gardens, too.

Same spider!  Might want to back up a few inches.

HRRAAAARRGGGGHHH!!  Just kidding, we're harmless garden spiders.

This was Twiggy.  I don't know Twiggy's real name, but it's getting dark, and I only Google spiders when it's not dark.

Yes, thankfully, we have.

At first, I thought it said "JYCVBXUYHW IXSFL"


All pollen, no spider.

Giant fern fiddleheads.

Highly informative!
And not so informative!

And what?

After a cricket match (AUS vs India!), a comedy show in front of the Opera House (Eddie Izzard!), rain and sun and lots of ginger beers and flat whites, we went camping among the kangas.  To be continued in Part Two of this segment.