Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Emotional Tourist

Okay, I will admit here and now that I cried when I saw the Sydney Opera House, and I cried when I saw the harbour Bridge. I also cried when I met up with my rellies - do you detect a little pattern here?

Let's face it, I'm an emotional kind of a girl, but hey, that means I am having a damn good time.

It was hosing down with rain on the day we went right into the city. But the weather cleared down to a drizzle, so I got to walk over to the Opera house. The rain did wreck havoc with the hair though, hence the killer frizzies from hell!

We stayed in Newcastle and in Sydney. I loved the incredible machinery associated with the coal in Newcastle - the huge conveyor belts and feeder machines, huge cranes. The scale was wonderful. I have a bit of a thing for the industrial landscape and machinery.

All in all it was a fantastic trip - it was was great to see family I hadn't caught up with for years, and I loved Sydney. Can't wait to return with the whole crew next time.

Random observations on Sydney:

Flying in to Sydney I was struck by the beautiful bays and the abundance of red roofs.

There are so many trees, but they were all eucalypts or gum trees. The effect was a monochromatic vista, occasionally studded by a flamboyant flowering Jacaranda.

The monochrome was made beautiful by the shimmering texture of the leaves.

Driving around Sydney I was struck by the vast number of red brick houses. Everything involving the earth or rock seemed to be red.

The different tones and shades of red were fascinating.

The red brick worked so well with the grey/ green of the eucalypts.

Australia sounded so different to New Zealand. The bird song was beautiful.

The bird song wasn't so beautiful at 5.00am when they all woke up!

The harsh grating Australian accent I was expecting wasn't there, (with the exception of my sister's.) It was a lot softer then I expected. Do they ham it up on television?

Sydney wasn't as culturally diverse as Dunedin.

Fresh prawns are good.

But not as good as fresh corn on the cob, slathered in butter, pepper and salt and scoffed at the market.

Seeing pictures of something doesn't prepare you for the emotional impact of being there, and seeing them with your own eyes and touching them. Mental note to self: take lots of tissues when traveling!


TK Roxborogh said...

meh! I was in Naseby with our (our, as in the Roxborogh/Symon brood) other two best friends and prob drank as much wine and ate as much glorious food but couldn't call it international travel. Never been to Oz. How sad is that? Am I now the ONLY New Zealander over the age of 30 to have never crossed the ditch?

I would cry too. I remember when the Opera House was finished (how old was I? cough - 2 or 3 cough cough)

when I get rich and famous (from now one referred to and RAF) I shall go. (BTW how appropriate my acronysm is the same as our now defunt airforce!)

Anonymous said...

Fascinated by your comments about the eucalypts. I used to see the landscape as you did (boring, all the same, etc), then one day I read the landscape with new eyes - I got it and have loved it ever since.

And yes,Dunedin is more culturally diverse. Absolutely. A bit drier too!

Kerrie said...

That flat Aussie accent is probably regional rather than metro Vanda.

Pen said...

Sounds like you had a time. I'm pleased to hear it. I haven't been to Aussie since I was a wee mite, but still I vividly remember the red earth - and jumping up and down to make the ants come out of their holes, before running away as fast as we could before they bit us. :D

Mary McCallum said...

Lovely post, Vanda. I love your enthusiasm for, well, everything! On my blog roll, I see the photo bloggers have put up rather than a title, for yours all I can see are your wide and excited eyes looking up at the roof of the Sydney Opera House. It made me smile.

Vanda Symon said...

Oh, I had such a wonderful time. There was so much to see, I felt like my head was spinning around and around on my shoulders like something out of an Omen movie.

My rellies were amused and quite delighted by my delight in it all.