Watching the bats...

Trip Start Feb 17, 2005
Trip End Feb 27, 2006

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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Despite not getting to sleep until 4.30am, I woke up just 5 hours later due to the obligatory bag rustling in my dorm. I didn't mind too much though as I wanted to take advantage of my last full day in Sydney, and I began it with a fried breakfast at a nearby cafe. I'm not usually a morning person, and this was no exception, but by the time I met up with Rie at midday I was feeling a lot better.

We'd pretty much done everything that we'd planned to do in Sydney, so we decided to mooch around the shops one last time. It goes without saying that we bought a smoothie each, as well as a doughnut and various other bits and pieces - it was my last day, so we had a reason to treat ourselves!

I suggested another stroll through the Botanic Gardens mid-afternoon as I wanted to see the bats - I'd read that they could be seen hanging from the trees in their hundreds near the Information Centre. Sure enough, we spotted a few people looking up at some trees and there they were, dozens and dozens of the large furry creatures. I thought that they looked cute but Rie was of a different opinion, but we both agreed that it made an interesting sight.

As it was such a beautiful day, we laid down on the grass, basking in the sun and watching the bats above us. We only planned on having a quick 10 minute rest, but we ended up staying for 4 hours because it was so relaxing! Besides, as the sun started to set, more and more bats woke up until the sky was eventually filled with the slighty eerie 'flying foxes.'

We were certainly being lazy, but we eventually decided to make a move as we were hungry, and we headed straight for a posh looking Italian restaurant. I felt a little underdressed in my combat shorts, but it wasn't a problem and we quickly ordered a couple of cocktails to get us in the mood. Of course I had my usual ham and pineapple pizza, although I should have ordered the same as Rie as her ravioli was lovely.

After we'd finished, Rie surprised me with some early birthday presents, including lots of chocolate and some ohashi (chopsticks). I need to practice using them before I go to Japan! I was most touched by the bracelet that she gave me, as I discovered that she'd stayed up until 7am the previous morning making it! It was very touching, and I realised then that I was going to miss her after I left for Singapore...

We strolled right up to the Opera House after our meal and took a couple of final photographs. Rie took one of the skyline and modestly referred to it as "beautiful," but she was right as all the lights reflected in the water to create a stunning effect.

By chance, we managed to claim the best seat in the Harbour after that, right next to the Opera House. It was very idyllic with the stars shining on a clear night, and we enjoyed eachother's company there until nearly 5am! Strangely I didn't feel tired at all as everything seemed to fit into place that night, but alas we needed to get some sleep as we both had planes to catch the next day - Rie was going to Cairns and I was going to Singapore.

It was a bit of a rush job getting checked out of the hostel before 10am the next morning, but we managed it...just! We then had a few hours to kill, so we went for a final walk along George Street, helping ourselves to another mighty fry up. I also purchased a cd of Rie's photos (as my camera had been playing up at times in Sydney) before it was time for us to get the shuttle to the airport.

Although Rie's flight was a few hours later than mine, she'd decided to come in at the same time to see me off, and I'll admit it was sad saying goodbye. We'd spent a lot of time together in Sydney, and personally speaking I'd loved every minute of it, so of course it was going to be difficult. However, I take solace from the fact that we'll see eachother again in Japan, where hopefully we'll be able to do some more travelling together...

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