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Archive for February, 2014

– A collection of my “micro-blog” posts from Facebook as I reminisce about my recent 3 weeks “Down Under” –

Day 1 Down Under. Lifetime dream of spotting the harbour bridge and opera house. Wandering round the beautiful botanic gardens spotting flocks of crazy squawking birds. Picnic on the grass watching the harbour ferry race, Australia Day complete!

Day 2 Down Under. Morning raisin bread and coffee followed by stroll along the coastal path from Bronte to Bondi. Dodging pups on leads and mean, lean joggers on the path. Watching surf dudes do their thing and having a quick splash in the Bondi foam. Tried to find the chaps from Bondi Rescue, but the ones on the beach look quite different (one had a full on beard and beer belly…). Afternoon spent doing the inevitable – work!
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Day 3 – Day 6 Down UnderFirecrackers, beach huts, graffiti; My week in Melbourne

Day 7 Down Under. Saturday morning in Melbourne, everyone else is still in their Fridays. Trying to connect to three different people in two different time zones. Feeling very ‘jet set’ but I may need to escape to a place without wifi after this…

Day 9 Down Under. Work. In the morning in my apartment, all afternoon at the conference centre, at dinner and a budget meeting before bed. We ate Greek tonight. The food wasn’t too interesting but the ceiling was…
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Day 12 Down Under. Along the Great Ocean Road, backpacking in The Grampians. Saw a koala or two today and we’re now off for dinner. I’m having kangeroo slouvaki.
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Day 13 Down Under. Great Ocean Road and the Grampians. Saw koalas, kangaroos and the lighthouse from Round The Twist.

Day 14 Down Under. Giant Koala, white kangaroos, and many, many flies… crossing over into South Australia.

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Day 15 Down Under. Kangaroo Island. Koalas, goannas (big lizards!), and apparently 500,000 kangaroos, who were mostly hiding in the shade. A magical place.

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Day 16 Down Under. Sweet Jesus, Trip Advisor weren’t wrong when they said my hostel was over a nightclub, in fact I am the lucky one whose room is over the nightclub. Thumping tunes coming up through the floor and my table is rocking to the bass. Can’t even get my TV to work to drown out the party mix, hey ho… Maybe I’ll jump around my room and join in until the kiddies get tired and go home…. — at Base Backpackers, Sydney.

Day 16 & 17 Down Under. Adelaide; City of Parks and Churches, and giant bronze cockroaches with Hula Hoopers on TV. Back to Sydney, escaping the monster backpackers to the hip leafy world of Justine Rogers (Thanka JRo,.you are a life saver :D). AND the Harbour Bridge walk at twilight – awesome!

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Day 18 & 19 Down Under. Slowing down to beach-speed. — at Hyams Beach, Jervis Bay

Day 20 Down Under. A couple fabulous days on and around Hyams beach with Marika Whitfield, white sand, dolphins, a man-of-war, a wallaby and a kookaburra (oh, and some interesting headgear…)
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Day 21 Down Under. Ok, enough of the sunshine and good times, I miss Blighty… Time to come home. Just got 24 hours of air time to deal with first… Final stop before leaving Oz, some impulse shopping at Duty Free — at Sydney International Airport
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So, Melbourne, you’ve been my Aussie home from home for the last week, and it’s been a blast. You surprised me with your feet friendly streets, luring me out after long hours of work to pace the grid exploring laneways and galleries, finding art on every corner, festivals and music in the sunshine along the Yara river, hanging with the hippies and backpackers in St Kilda, riding the trams with the commuters and the tourists.
Your weather was baffling, searing heat one moment, chilling winds the next, each morning sliding open my balcony doors to meet the sunrise not knowing if I’d meet the muggy blanket of a humid morning or the icy blast of a southerly wind.
Some stolen moments to remember include my morning walk to Brunswick Street, a carnival of alternative shops and cafes, my first trip to Fed Square and falling into the middle of a very lively Latin American festival with a Mexican band, sitting on the board walk at St Kilda on a Saturday afternoon, watching the hunks and posers strut their stuff, the relentless firecracker celebrations of Chinese New Year, and my final day in Melbourne, after a long day at work, escaping to Brighton Beach for a lie down on the sand, infront of the technicolor huts, watching the sunset. Bliss.

I left the city at 6am this morning, heading out along the Great Ocean Road, off on another adventure. Leaving a balmy Melbourne in the rear view mirror, our time together was fleeting, but I can genuinely say I felt very ‘at home’ in my Aussie home from home!

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