Friday, July 09, 2004

Travel Journal Part 4


This is a not-very-good photograph of the Sydney Harbor Bridge. This morning we had breakfast at a London-esque, pub-ish, underground joint called the "G-Spot." Where in America we would normally have some sort of potato thing with our eggs and bacon and toast, like hash browns, Australians provide grilled tomatoes. They are so so so good. This place also made fresh-squeezed apple juice. It was incredible, like walking up to an apple tree and taking a big bite out of a granny smith still on the branch. Then we walked to the Sydney Harbor bridge to brave the famous Bridge Walk. It's a three-and-a-half-hour climb up to the top of the bridge arch. We suited up in jump suits that zipped up the back and were nice and breathable. We put on harnesses, radios, headsets, and crampon-type things and climbed over a thousand steps to the top. Part of the climb was ladders and part of it was cat-walks. I'm normally nervous about heights, but I did ok. At the top it was terrifying and beautiful. Not a cloud in the sky, not a breath of wind. The flags on the arch lay against their poles like sleeping bats. We looked out at the opera house, at Manly, at the ferries passing beneath us, at Luna Park, at each other reeling with wonder and gratitude for this perfect moment. Our legs were shaking by the time we got to the bottom. A perfect warm day to be high above the world. And now we are headed to Manly on the ferry for dinner. Well, Manly was a bust. We got off the boat and walked into the...city? It reminded me of the abandoned amusement park in "Spirited Away" except a whole. lot. crappier. Everything was closed except for a few pubs that were populated by surly career alcoholics and surlier bartenders that flat-out refused to make cosmopolitans. We finally found a place right next to the ferry terminal that was willing to mix me a pink, triangular cocktail (which for some reason are always served with two straws resting atop the glass here). CB had some absynthe which was radioactive green in color and burned my nose hairs when I dared a tiny sniff. Then we ran like hell for the next boat back to Sydney. As we approached Circular Quay on the return trip, we realized that the detour had, in fact, been worth our while as the coastline of the harbor came into view. Seagulls flew along with the boat, the muscles of their pale bodies flexing in the light from the deck. Homing in on Circular Quay was like floating toward a wall of tiny blinding squares - the lit windows of skyscrapers climbing the sky. Our search for a restaurant to our tastes was stressful and harried as it was getting late. We discovered, belatedly, that George Street is not known for it's eateries and found ourselves, once again, on the stretch of restaurants along the edge of Darling Harbor. The one we picked was entirely satisfactory. I ate kangaroo. It was a bit stringy but otherwise delish. Tomorrow we fly to Adelaide. Posted by Hello

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