Monday, 20 June 2022

Our first overseas travel for some time ...

On 7 June we came back from 5 days in Sydney - our first venture away from NZ since October 2019. Wow! That is the longest we have stayed in NZ for many years, I think.

David trying to find a way to use his noise cancelling headphones wirelessly in the plane's video system. The airline's headphones are too big for his ears - the noise cancelling ones could not be connected (it was the only cord he didn't bring ...) so I peeled the foam rubber bits off his airline ones and they sufficed unto the day.


Not a hugely active or sightseeing trip, but pleasurable - the main purpose was to see the lovely daughter and her new (to her) flat. It's her first home ownership and we had to go and see it, didn't we? It's got just the one bedroom so we couldn't stay with her, but that was fine. Verdict: small but perfectly formed. 1960s building, I think. She's on the upper floor (1st floor in NZ parlance, 2nd floor for those of the US persuasion). And one of the most important things is that the flat has excellent sun.

Sydney's suburbs are very green - lots of trees in gardens and along the streets; and we were delighted to see that Kirsty's suburb seems to be even more covered in trees than others.

See? Trees, green, more trees, more green.

 The Airbnb we stayed in in Marrickville was cool - a one bedroom cottage right next to the Marrickville Oval. With trees in the front of it, as you can see in the photo below. And across the park was a wonderful cafe where we ate breakfast on two days. 

That is David coming back across the park. Our airbnb is behind that wodden fence - the house has a green roof that you can see behind the croquet pavilion.

Breakfast at the cafe across the park, recommended by our hostess. David had scrambled eggs with ginger and a salad. Very yummy, I understand.

I cannot remember what mine was but it was pretty good - although I am not keen on eggs poached in vinegar and water. Far prefer the salt option for setting the whites myself.

We did a fair amount of walking - about 13000 steps on one day and 11000 on at least one more.

On Friday we had walked up to the IGA supermarket in Marrickville - lovely shop, great chat with the owner, but food is not cheap in Sydney, regardless of what people say. 


Nice houses on the way back from the IGA, I think.
Not sure where I saw this, but it did make me laugh!


On the way back laden down with enough groceries for twice the length of our stay, we chatted with a woman who was sweeping her porch... She used to live in Auckland (I extended my sympathies). Anyway she suggested that we may like to take a trip in to the city on the new light rail service. Yes we would, so we dropped the groceries off at the bnb and then walked over to Dulwich Hill Station. 

You can pay for public transport (well the trains and light rail at least) by tapping on and off using your credit card - great idea!

I asked a guy to take a photo of us - see below. And then he gave us a travelling commentary all the way into the city - very interesting.

Masks on all the way, that's us - we are good and well behaved

At Central Station, we got off the light rail carriage, walked about 10 metres down the platform and then got back on the train again to head back. 

That evening Kirsty asked about our day and was very amused, in that way that adult children have about the activities of their elderly parents, when we told her about chatting with:

  • two women in the cafe where we had breakfast
  • the owner of the IGA supermarket (he loves NZ fruit)
  • the proprietor of the Thai restaurant we'd had a takeaway delivery from the previous night - the restaurant is next door to the IGA so David popped in to tell them how much we had enjoyed the meal
  • the lady sweeping her porch
  • every dog we saw and most of their humans
  • the chap on the light rail.

On Saturday, after seeing Kirsty's flat and walking to and around Campsie, we ubered to somewhere near Newtown and had a yummy late lunch at restaurant called Little Turtle - a Thai vegetarian place. The food was delicious.

Sunday we had lunch in a cafe down on Circular Quay and then went to a Vivid Sydney event - A Conversation with Baz Luhrman. A really interesting session in the State Theatre. I need to find his films and watch them. And we will go to see the movie he was talking about in the theatre - Elvis, if for no other reason than to see Tom Hanks playing Colonel Parker.

On our way back from the station to the airbnb, the sun was about to set. Just beautiful.

Lovely, eh?

But on the Monday I was poorly - we had intended to head in to Circular Quay and then get a ferry to Watson's Bay for a wander around. But as we left the cafe across the park, I needed to dash back to the cottage. I think I may have been afflicted with a bout of food poisoning from the cafe on Circular Quay the previous day, dammit. 

So David headed up to the pharmacy to buy immodium and electrolyte tabs for me and I stayed close to the dunny😅😈😉

I was still afflicted on Tuesday when we were flying back to NZ - which is a bit dodgy when travelling. But I had an aisle seat so it was fine, just a tad embarrassing that I was the one out of my seat the most ... 😅😈😉

Lovely flight home, very smooth, then a good quick drive out of the city, even though it was rush hour. Transmission Gully makes an enormous difference, even if the hills eat up more petrol!

So back to work on the Wednesday morning and it's been all go in the 12 days since. At least I am earning more dollars for more flights. And that is necessary now that David has declared he is definitely travelling business class when we head to the UK next year!


Bernice said...

We can highly recommend Emirates Premium Economy, they should be flying the A380’s back to NZ by then, but of course Business is much better again. I see you still wear masks…no one here in UK wears masks, took us a while to get used to going maskless but it didn’t take long 😜.

Marilyn, nb Waka Huia said...

I reckon we will still be wearing them for a fair while longer. We've got really used to them, and I think about the Asian tourists we used to see in Wellington who all wore masks back before 2020. It's not a hassle and feels much safer!

Cases are rising in the UK again - if you have some masks available then put them on again!

Thought about you yesterday - I baked 8 loaves of sourdough...


Jo Murray (Jo B) said...

Sounds like fun apart from the last day! Love Sydney!!!