Friday, September 01, 2006

Sydney, Australia

Sydney is a really excellent city. I cannot help but open my Sydney entry with those simple words. It is just a really, really cool place. I arrived Tues. morning, dropped my stuff off at a backpackers hotel, and within an hour was exploring the town. It is supposedly winter but the sun is shining, the air is crisp and warm, and the sky is blue with fluffy clouds here and there. I was crossing the street to the Botanical Gardens when I heard, "Excuse me...", I look back and a young, quite handsome man (with a cast on his arm) says to me, "You are beautiful" and walks away. I could not help but like Sydney right away.

To resist being impartial, I would like to take this time to list four of the coolest things I have discovered about Sydney since...

1. The "Tiger"
A meat pot pie smothered in mashed potatoes, topped with mashed green peas, and then covered in a sauce (cheese, gravy, etc.) of your choice to boot. All for about US$4.50. In my case I had the "Veggie Tiger", and the pot pie alone would have been heavenly enough. Ooh la laaaa!

2. Cockatiels
You walk along, hear a deep throaty squawk above your head, and look up to see what it is. Could it be a giant crow? A seagull? A bird, a plane...Superman? No, folks, it is a giant white cockatiel--now please forgive me if I spell him wrong--with a yellow trill of feathers on his head. If you feed the birds in the park you are guaranteed a flock of them to join in with the pigeons. And some of them will say Hello to you in an Aussie accent, how cool is that?

3. Free Beer
I really don't know how they can do this, but bars around the backpackers hotels have a Happy Hour where they serve free pitchers of beer! Not just 1 pitcher, the other day our group got 7 or 8 pitchers!! If there was anytime to learn to drink beer, now would be that time. (and I still wont touch the stuff...)

4. Cadbury Chocolate
My favorite chocolate company....everywhere! You can buy Cadbury Eggs year round, along with a whole plethora of chocolate bars and snacks. Even McDonald's shakes and sundaes use Cadbury chocolates. It is Shannen's chocolate heaven. They only downfall is a candy bars cost a buck fifty around here, ouch!

These along with the laid back Australian attitude, it being safe to walk about at night and a huge mixture of foreigners all make it a colorful, exciting city.

Today I went to the Koala Park Sactuary and got to see all the native Australian animals, feed the kangaroos and pet a koala. Koalas sleep 18 hours a day, what a life! The park ranger woke one up for us to see and get pictures with, and he was a total grog-case. After I saw a man sheer a sheep, and "chatted" with the cockatiels ("Hello, hello, hello, goodbye, hello, goodbye").

So far, a cool, cool trip. Monday I go to Melbourne, and the week after that to Tasmania.
Miss you all!

See pics at side bar


Ravioli said...

Hi Shannen; nice adventure, is very cold there? Put in the photos, I want to see!!! I want to go to Free Beer and I want to be a koala hahaha....

Anonymous said...

Wow, Australia sounds too cool for words!! I think I want to go there!! Are you expanding your English vocabulary..."plethora"...I am impressed.

Anonymous said...

Hey Shannen!!

Oz sounds fantastic! It has long been on our list to visit and I am now more bound and determined after hearing about free beer!!

Might have to move there permanently in fact.

Looking forward to hearing more about it and seeing some pic's. By the way, I couldn't access your Fuji pics. Is there any way to make them publically available? That is, where one doesn't have to register with Yahoo?

By the way, Sana and I saw Zero 7 live the other night. Fantastic concert. Great music and their lead singer, Sia -- from the land of Oz herself -- was very cool and sounding just as good live as on the cd's.

Have you met up with your friends in Australia yet or is that coming up?

cheers and do think of taking up some of that free beer. When in Rome you know.....

have fun,


Shannen said...

Dear ALL,

I fixed the settings on the Fuji-san pics, I was a dork and had them on "private" setting. Please take a look at them if you have time!


You would looove the free beer! It was warm in Sydney but now is cold in Melbourne. Samui!! Te extrano...!

You would love it here! And everyone speaks English, too, ha ha! Can you belive the news today, Steve the Croc Man was killed yesterday! Remember I used to watch him every night on Animal Planet! It was front page news here in Australia.
Did I use the word "plethora"? Don't remember, ha ha, hope I used it correctly...


Free BEEEEEEER! How can one pass that up? I should be drinking your share!
I'm glad you enjoyed the Zero 7 concert! I think I saw them on a roster here to play, but it was earlier this summer. I love the CD you lent me, thanks!
Both Sydney and Melbourne remind me of Vancouver, not for the weather, obviously, but for the great mix of nationalities living here. But I would live in Vancouver still anyday!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great place... I liked the cockatiels the best. So are they kind of dirty, like having a pet pigeon? I've been trying to talk Jamie into a pet bird for the last year or so...

Still waiting for pics of the Aussie guys...

sister Sam

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Fantastic Fuji-san pic's Shannen. Thanks for fixing that. They were spectacular: especially the sunrise shot. Beautiful!

BTW, that cd is now yours buddy!

&... drink some beer for me!!

Anonymous said...

oops.. forgot to sign off on the above. That one was from Max Shannen. if you couldn't guess from the beer reference.

max (again)

Shannen said...

*Sister Sam*

The cockatiels seem clean enough, they're still white, ha ha. You want ANOTHER pet?!!??! I'll try to get Aussie guy pics for you without getting punched in the face...

*Anonymous Max*

He he, I knew it was you! Thanks for looking at the pics! And for the CD!

Ravioli said...

Hi Linda; nice pictures, now I can see because I want to go Australia, I like it. I miss You too.

Anonymous said...

Hi Shannen:

Just thought I'd commiserate with you about Steve Irwin's passing. Sana and I used to watch his programs all the time too. It's a shame.


Shannen said...


Thanks! I hope someday you can also come visit Australia! The food is good, toooo!


I was shocked, too! My friend who is a school teacher here says kids were crying watching the news. I really loved Steve's show. The Australian government offered him a state procession, but his family declined saying he was just a normal guy and would have wanted a normal funeral.
I also think he risked his life so many times, you really can't beat Mother Nature.