Arrived Down Unda!

Trip Start May 23, 2009
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed

Flag of Australia  , New South Wales,
Sunday, May 31, 2009

Ok, everyone, sorry for the lack of updates....

It's been next to impossible to get internet access at the places we've been at... or it's been very expensive, and we keep putting it off until we can get to a better place.  That place never really showed itself.  Also, some of our days have been sooo long, by the end, it's just not possible to stay up to do the blog when you have to wake up in 5 hours to go out again. I know that's no excuse, but it's the truth.  Anyhoo... we've got lots of pictures to put up, and when we get back to HK or Toronto, we'll finish the blog entries.  Cheers.


We finally caught our flight from Singapore heading to Darwin, where we will catch a connecting flight to Sydney.  Arrived in Darwin at 3:00am and our connecting flight doesn’t leave for Sydney until 8:05am, so we slept at the airport terminal gate.   We got searched going through customs, I’m not sure if it’s because we were Chinese (who have a reputation for smuggling banned foods into Australia) or if because we just look so bummy, but yeah we got pulled over and searched, and all our souvenirs from Cambodia had to get checked and cleared from Quarantine control.  But everything was ok, and eventually we got through.  The airport in Darwin is pretty small, but at least it was comfortable.  They provided very comfy sofa chairs, some two-seaters, in their lounge.  Practically everyone at the terminal at 3:00am there was sleeping on the sofa’s with blankets or sleeping bags.  So Felicia and I grabbed back to back 2 seater sofa’s and crashed till 8:00am. 

We caught our flight to Sydney on time, and arrived just a couple of minutes past 1pm.  We caught a shuttle bus that had no passengers in it, to take us directly to our hotel, the Ibis King St Wharf.  Cost only $15AUD each.
We checked in, and got our rooms, and asked about Jeff & Julie.  The guy at reception had checked them in a few hours earlier and thought that they should be in their room, which was right next to ours.  We dropped our stuff off in the room and knocked on their door hoping to surprise them.  No answer.  We tried calling their room… no answer.  We called reception to see if they had left a note for us…. No note.  We tried to reach them on our walkie-talkies…. No answer.  Grrrr.    Where could they be?

So I wrote them a note telling them we’re gonna go grab some lunch and we’ll be back in an hour if they get back.  I slipped under it their door, and we left to go look for food along the boardwalk in Darling Harbour.
Surely, not ten minutes of walking on the boardwalk later, I get a page on the walkie talk from Jeff. They had just come back from their own walk on the boardwalk and had heard from reception we were looking for them.  Felicia and I just grabbed a Subway Sub on the way back to the hotel, and we went straight to Jeff and Julie’s room.
We knocked on the door, and Julie answered, and it was really great to see their faces.  It’s nice to meet up with good friends around the world.  We chit chatted and got caught up on our travels getting here.  Apparently in Macau, Julie ran into some trouble with a immigration officer.  She was impatient to get through customs, and was rushing, so she was running (briskly walking) through to customs when a lady wearing a facemask and a Abercrombie shirt went up to her and asked to see her passport.  Julie didn’t trust her and asked who she was, the lady then showed her her card, and asked Julie to step aside into her office for an interrogation.  Just Julie, not jeff =)  …  eventually she got thru the interview and was let in.  whew.  Their flights were pretty long, 15 hrs to HongKong/Macau, then 9hrs to Sydney, none of which they were able to get much sleep on.

Anyhoo, today is Julie’s B-day, so we went out to go celebrate at the 360 Sydney Tower Restaurant, which is equivalent to the 360 Restaurant in the CN Tower.  It’s pretty fancy, and the restaurant does a full revolution every 60minutes or so.   We had made reservations through the internet, and it was set menu that was offered for dinner.   Jeff and Felicia for the main entrée had the Lamb Shank, it was a little gamey but good.  Julie and I had the Salmon with Lobster Ravioli.  The salmon came out and neither of us could stomach it.  It tasted pretty raw…. Both of us can eat Sashimi, but this salmon had a weird flavor that made us both want to gag.  We both sent it back to the Kitchen asking to have it re-cooked hoping the chef doesn’t spit in it.  It came back out 10 minutes later, and a little more cooked, but we still couldn’t eat it.  I basically filled up on bread.   It was a pretty expensive meal, and I didn’t get full, but I didn’t go for the food, I went for the view and the experience and both were good, so it’s ok.  Julie for her birthday got a brand new fancy Panasonic HD 12megapixel Lumix digital camera, and she brought it on this trip.  It’s really purdy and has a huge LCD screen.  Felicia and I also got her something for her birthday.  We got her a blue sapphire bracelet in white gold from Cambodia, and gave it to her during dinner.  I hope she liked it. I think she did.  I’ll post a picture of it later.  We polished off the bottle of red wine we had with dinner and we left.  But not before we checked out the restaurant’s bathroom on the way out. 

I believe whoever designed their washroom must have been a doctor, cuz at the urinals it’s all mirrored and you could give yourself a self prostate exam while peeing.  Check out the picture attached.  Anyhoo, we would have gone to the Sydney Opera House at night to take some pictures, but it’s not lit up at night apparently, so we’ll have to do that another day.  We’ve got wake up early tomorrow for an excursion to the Blue Mountains.  So off to bed for now…. Latez.
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