Chapter 14: First Week in Sydney

Trip Start May 10, 2006
Trip End Dec 17, 2006

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Monday, November 13, 2006

I arrived into Sydney airport just after 6am on November 6. Josh picked me up at the airport and took me back to the apartment he and Lis share in Waterloo (borough of Sydney). Lis and Alison were still there getting ready for work so I got to see them right away. It doesn't feel like a year and a half since I saw them last (more like a few weeks). Soon they were all off to work or school. I had planned to just take a short snooze, but ended up sleeping like 6 hours. Wandered off to the market and picked up my Frosties and milk so I'd have breakfast for the coming days. I managed to download enough music to exceed Josh's ISP quota for the month, which reduced the connection speed to dial-up equivalent - d'oh! Josh, Ali and Lis are all on a detox diet so mostly veges and no alcohol. They cooked up a good dinner for me though. And not drinking saves me money (alcohol is expensive here).

My next few days were spent sleeping in, being lazy around the apartment and occasionally getting out for a wander. The weather wasn't very good so no days lounging at the beach as I'd hoped. I probably should've started on the job hunt but could easily find other things to do (like sorting through my Europe pics). Actually, I did get my resume posted on a couple of the job sites. Just gotta start actively submitting applications. Because of the detox diet, we weren't going out in the evenings for doing anything. Between sitting around all day and staying in at night, that first week wasn't terribly exciting.

The weather improved on Friday so I took the bus into the city. I wandered around by the Opera House, The Rocks and Harbour Bridge. Not like I haven't been there before, but it's always pretty. That evening a group of us met up at Central Station to go out to Olympic Park for the U2 concert. We were doing reasonably well on time when we first arrived, but then people wanted to get food and drinks (Josh, Ali and Lis were all officially off the detox diet as of concert time). Eventually we all met back up then got inside the gates. Now people went for drinks and toilet breaks. By the time all this was done, an hour and a half had passed since we arrived and Kanye West (opening act) was already on. We had general admission tickets on the field so ended up not so close to the stage. U2 opened up with 'City of Blinding Lights' and it soon started to rain. It was actually kind of fun getting soaked and dancing around. U2 put on a great show but it kind of sucked having to peek around people's heads trying to see (and even then it was still far away so couldn't see well). I prefer small venue concerts.

Saturday afternoon there was a birthday party for Ali's friend, Jen, out in Campbelltown (I'd also met Jen last time I was in Australia). Lis drove me out there where we met up with the others. The party was at Jen's parents' house. It was a lot of her family plus some friends...and quite a few kids. Everyone was nice and the food was good. Josh was quite happy to get to have beer again. Not exactly a place for me to meet other people to hang out with though. We stayed 'til the end (10:30pm) then went to catch the tail-end of a houseparty at Ali's place in Coogee. Most everyone had left by the time we arrived, but I got to meet the new roommates and some of their friends. We didn't stay too long before returning home to bed.

Sunday was another birthday celebration - this time for Josh's friend, Jen. Josh met Jen & Tomer while apartment hunting when he first arrived in Sydney. I met them while I was here last time. They're both American from the San Francisco area and very nice. We met at a restaurant in Chinatown for dim sum. I had to be careful to avoid anything with shellfish (or vegetables 'cuz green stuff is scary). Most of us went to the Newtown festival afterwards where there was live music and various booths (food, merchandise). Got to talk to their friends Ian, Vivian, Ken, Ina and Sabrina. All of them were nice too. Afterwards some of us went to a Vietnamese place for dinner. We were going to play some pool too, but all the bars in the Newtown area were packed. I went back to the apartment and hung out with Josh, Ali and Lis.

The first few days in Sydney weren't terribly exciting but it got better with the weekend. The weather forecast for the coming days shows more rain so guess I won't be going to the beach anytime soon. S'pose that will keep me in to do what I should be doing, looking for jobs. Wish me luck with that.

"who's to say where the wind will take you?
who's to say what it is will break you?
I don't know, which way the wind will blow"

---- U2, kite
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