april in sydney - day four

manly bluemanly beach blonde hotness
Today has been A Very Long Day... full of sun and sand and hotnesses and has almost felt as though we crammed a couple of days' worth of stuff into a single day. And I'm tired and a little bit sunburned and also a wee bit cranky mostly for the two previously mentioned reasons.

After a fairly late night due to trying to catch up being a day behind with writing up our adventures, I still managed to wake up fairly early this morning... kind of too early to get up so I lay in bed for a while footling around on my phone.

Eventually I needed to get up anyway, so I figured I may as well get up, have a shower, get ready and then finish off yesterday's post... which turned out to be a much better plan as I didn't then need to rush around like crazy.

Today's plan was Manly... so once Ma messaged me I wandered next door and we set off for Circular Quay.

freshwater ferrysea water wave
Riding the giant Freshwater ferry was quite different from the two ferries we rode last night. For one thing, it's massive, but it's also kind of ponderous... or maybe it just feels slow after the ferries last night. It kind of needs to be slow though once it gets to the entrance to the open ocean, as the waves definitely pick up and I put my many years of bus surfing to good use riding the swells without being flung all over the place.

Actually, that's the best part of the trip.

When we got to Manly Wharf, Ma called up my cousin, Wills, who lives a couple of suburbs over from Sydney and he directed us to somewhere just off The Corso to grab some coffee/breakfast while he came and met us.

Sadly, while we had a choice of two breakfast places, neither of them were the places I'd originally been aiming to have breakfast at, and of the two, we ended up at the one without the really hot waiting staff.

Speaking of hotness, since there will be a lot of photos of hotness throughout this post... I don't know if it's me seeing something that isn't there, but there seems to be an almost 1940's vibe happening amongst the twenty-something men of Sydney. I've seen a lot of guys with very 40's style hair... parted on one side, and neatly styled... and a number of them have also had very vintage looking facial hair. Maybe it's an 80's retro thing that was originally based on a 40's thing... maybe it's a Sydney cool hipster thing... I don't know. But I do know that I like it.

Anyway, Manly and Wills.

Ma and he did most of the chatting about family and this and that and the other. It's one of those things where I may be related to him, but essentially I hardly really know him and don't really have a whole lot of stuff in common with him.

looking south towards the cityresting between waves
After we finished breakfast/coffee he offered to drive us around and show us a few places, which was actually pretty cool, even if he did drive like a crazy person. Or maybe he just drives like a Sydneysider, I haven't actually been in the car of anyone who lives here before.

I'm not completely sure where he took us either... I know we went west and ended up at a lookout where you could see the city... somewhere in Sydney Harbour National Park possibly... if anyone can tell me from the photo, let me know.

And then he took us back along Manly Beach and around to, I think, McKillop Park by Queenscliff Bay... and there were some surfers out in the bay... which I always love.

backyard surfersrising swell
We couldn't stay long as he had to drive Little Wills to a birthday party, so he dropped us off back in Manly and headed off on his merry way.

From there Ma and I wandered from the North Steyne Surf Life Saving Club down along the beachfront.

The weather was fine, the surf looked pretty good and there was a lot of fine manflesh out and about along Manly Beach.

manly market posterstattoo crest
We walked all the way down to the Manly Surf Club then wandered back to The Corso to check out the Manly Markets... which, to be honest, didn't take all that long, so we wandered back down the beach in search of something to eat and ended up at Moo Gourmet Burgers.

I don’t know if it was just Manly in general but there were a lot of things being removed from menu items or substituted or whathaveyou. I wasn't any better, getting them to remove the avocado from the Bacon and Avocado Burger and removing the cucumber from Ma's salad.

Moo also does the best onion rings... and I do love a good onion ring.

After we'd finished eating we wandered back down the beach and decided to follow the walking trail around to Shelly Beach... seemingly along with just about every man and his actual dog.

While there were quite a number of really hot, but difficult to photograph, guys heading either to or from Shelly Beach, the winner has to be the buff, bronzed guy in the fluro citrus coloured shorts and the silver swimming cap jogging along the path between Shelly Beach and Manly, with no shoes. It was... certainly something to see... but in a good way.

There really wasn't a whole lot of anything to see or do that didn't involve eating (which we'd just done), sand (so didn't want that in my shoes) or the water (ditto on the shoes), so we didn't stick around at Shelly Beach, but headed back around to Manly.

I will say this, the Manly-Shelly walk is a hell of a lot easier to do than the Bondi-Tamarama walk.

We took one final wander back up along Manly Beach until we'd both had enough and then wandered back down and along The Corso to the Wharf.

Just us and seemingly about 500 of our closest friends.

I don't know if that's an "all the time" thing, but the ferry was essentially packed. Ma and I, along with a number of other tourist types, ended up outside at the front. We were up on the second level for the trip to Manly, but being down on deck level makes for a much more interesting ride, especially while crossing the open section. There were definitely a few moments where it felt like this big, heavy ferry was close to achieving lift off and then came the lurch and back down we went, much to the general squeals of my fellow passengers.

strong currents, flowery shorts
Getting off the ferry was a bit of an adventure too... but after some general ducking and dodging and weaving we eventually got out into the clear... but there really did seem to just be people everywhere.

We headed up to The Rocks to take a look at what was going on Market-wise... the answer, not really a hell of a lot. There was a lot of stuff there, but like I think I said last time, most of it is just random crap. We did stop by to see the guys who made my watch pendant but the older son who we spoke to the last time Ma and I were in Sydney didn't seem to be about, so we had a quick look at their stuff and then wandered off.

I think Ma may have been working her way through a mental checklist of ferry lines since we ended up with the very expensive weekly tickets, because she suggested that we take the Neutral Bay trip as it was short. Personally, I was a bit ambivalent about Neutral Bay...

Get it... hey, hey... don't make me repeat it like I had to with Ma, please.

marker postwaiting for the next wave
It was on another one of the First Fleet ferries, Sirius (and yes, I think I'm working through my own mental checklist of riding all of the ferries in the fleet eventually), although I think they may all have slightly different bow designs, since this seemed to be different from Alexander yesterday, but that could be my memory playing tricks... clearly I'm getting old and forgetful.

The trip was pleasant enough... nowhere near as photogenic as either of the trips last night, but it filled in some time nicely, and we got to see a few more destinations. Thinking about it now, I think maybe that could have been the ferry ride that we took the first time we came to Sydney... I know it kind of went that way, and it wasn't all that long.

Once Sirius dropped us back off at Circular Quay we headed back to the hotel, finally, for a rest before trying to decide where to go to dinner.

manly guardianleonine dreadlocks
We perhaps left it a little later than we should have to head out to eat, and while Ma had suggested revisiting Wagamama again, neither of us was supremely confident that we could get there, order, eat and get where we needed to go within the allotted time.

Ma then came up with the idea of going downstairs and having dinner in the hotel café. To be honest, at that point my sunburn had definitely started to kick in, and I was just feeling really tired, so I was open to just about any suggestion.

So that's what we did... and given that I wasn't overly hungry (I think it's the fact that we've been eating all of our meals later than we normally would, even with the time difference, so my body isn't always hungry at "appropriate" times) I opted for the pumpkin soup, which was really tasty, and some English Breakfast Tea... which is proof that I wasn't feeling my best because that's the only time I ever drink sweet, white tea.

After dinner and a quick pitstop to drop Ma's bag back in her room since she decided that she didn't need it, we headed up to the Sydney Observatory for their Night Tour.

And that also means that, for the first time, I can claim a Lifescouts badge due to something that just happened rather than something from my past.

lifescouts: observatory
Observatory

I wasn’t completely sure what to expect from an observatory tour... I mean, yes, space and telescopes and planets and the like, but not exactly what was going to happen.

They let us roam around the museum to start with, pretty much left to our own devices, which was kind of cool, although I couldn't take any photos (well, I could have, but you're not allowed to publish them, including to the net, I'm guessing for copyright reasons, since they've got a lot of photos and books and things on display. Kind of a shame though, since there were a few things I would have loved to snap photos of.

Eventually they called us all back to reception and then split everyone into two groups, and thankfully I think we were with a reasonably quiet group. Our group went to check out the planetarium first of all, which was pretty cool... although planetarium sounds quite grand, this was a special projector underneath a special umbrella in the middle of a circular couch. But it was still pretty cool, as the guy made it show the current night's sky as it would appear if there were no clouds and no light pollution.

And he could overlay constellation lines and then the constellation images and names and then rotate the whole thing and zoom in and out. I think it's fairly new, so they may not have worked out how to show if off to its best, but it's an impressive piece of kit.

After that he took us up into the old observatory dome (the Sydney Observatory has two domes) and showed us the really old telescope, which is all made from brass inside a dome that looks like it's mostly lined with copper. Very cool.

Even cooler though was the second dome with the much shorter and much newer modern telescope.

We saw a very, very, very close-up section of the moon, we saw Saturn complete with rings, we saw Alpha Centuri's binary system and we saw a jewel box star cluster.

Of all of them though, I think Saturn was definitely the most impressive... it looks exactly like you imagine Saturn to look, although it was basically white, the rings included, which I don't think I knew... for some reason I think I thought of Saturns as a yellowy colour.

But it's definitely white, I've seen in.

After the observatory part we all came back together to watch a 3D video about the relative sizes of things in space, which was fairly interesting... and then the guy who had taken the other group of people came back into the room and we got sidetracked by things that would destroy the Earth, life on other planets, alien visitors and whatnot... mostly because there was one dude who just wouldn't shut up and he really hijacked the discussion a little.

Other than that though, it was a very interesting evening. And another Lifescouts Badge that I can add to my collection.

sand hillarchangel tattoo
That also pretty much brings out holiday to an end... there will be just enough time to grab some breakfast in the morning before we have to head out to the airport, then it's home again, home again.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go and throw all my clothes into a suitcase.

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Addendum

Normally I would have written a separate post for our final day, but literally all that happened was that I woke up, had a shower, finished packing my suitcase, checked the room a bunch of times to ensure I hadn't forgotten anything and then dragged all of my stuff to Ma's room.

We then had a very uninspired breakfast at McDonalds down the road (it was quick and easy), then grabbed all of our stuff and headed down to the station to catch the train to the airport.

The flight home was uneventful, I half dozed and listened to more podcasts.

While I was pleased to get off the plane and actually walk around, I can't say that I was overly enthusiastic about coming home to my regular life.

The taxi ride home was fairly painless, and as much as I still wanted to be somewhere else, it was good to see my little apartment.

sydney trip goodies 2013
I think we did more in the way of experiences than actual shopping this time, so there isn't much in the way of travel-related goodies this time... and most of it is vinyl toys.

huck gee post apocalyptic dunnysred trikky, chris ryniak's apocalypse dunny, riddler domo

lego chima - equila and razardecember diamonds tattoo merman

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1 comment:

Victor said...

I suspect the lookout your cousin took you to was at North Head.

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