Tuesday - Thursday, March 14-16
The weather gods finally said enough of that good stuff, let it
rain! We’ve had almost a full month of fabulous weather, so can’t complain. Two
more days and we go home! Walked to Darling Harbour and around that area. Had
breakfast on the way - organic granola with homemade berry sauce, Greek yogurt
and a long black (that's what they call an Americano - 2 shots expresso with hot water). Janet had French toast.
Lunch was a shared Portuguese chicken sandwich
to get out of the rain. Spent a couple of hours in the hotel catching up on my
blog while Janet had a nap. Out for another little walkabout and then down to
the CQ for crepes for dinner.
One thing I forgot to tell you about is this
strange vending machine they have all over here. I took a closer look and
realized it’s selling flipflops at $35 per pair and there is a size chart
below. We pondered about this and came to the conclusion – there are at least 4
to 5 cruise ships in Sydney Harbour at any given time. Most of the women are
trotting around in the most ridiculous high-heeled footwear and I have thought
to myself – where does she think she’s going in those? Well, obviously someone
realized a huge sales potential – think about it – what would you pay if you
were a mile away and your feet were killing you?
I finally finished that lame book, 'My brilliant
friend' and just as I thought, it didn't get any better and had a really crummy
ending, like someone ripped the last 50 pages out of the book or the author
just gave up. Thanks Janet! Am starting 'Hillbilly Elegy' by JD Vance with
higher hopes that it will at least keep me interested for that almost 24 hours
of travel time going home...Janet is half way through my Elvis Costello, ‘Unfaithful
Music & Disappearing Ink’ - she says it's a good story but he’s not a very
good writer - she spent several years in England in the late 60s, early 70s so
there’s some nostalgia there.
Thursday and we are at the airport - I have a
strategy for getting through this flight...on the trip over, my knees were
killing me before we got to Vancouver and by the time we got to Sydney I
seriously thought I might have to stay rather than going through that again. Anyway,
my plan is to slather Voltaren on my knees just before boarding – I know I won’t
be able to do this on the plane (I have a 100g tube so it’ll make it through the
scanning in case I need it again and you know, only WestJet in Toronto caught it but did let me go) and take a couple of Advil just as we get
underway and repeat the dosage as necessary. Lucky for me, I scored a window
seat and I'm not sure if that's the big difference - I can actually
raise my legs one at a time and put them out to the side relatively straight
every now and then and it's going well, no issues at all. The flight to
Vancouver seems shorter than the way there, it's only 13.5 hours flying time
which seems much less than what was supposed to be 18 hours of the way over (I
didn’t keep track then – now I’m feeling totally anal!) but we still have to
get to Toronto, another 4.5 hours - can't be too bad but Janet decides she
should have the window seat this time. Home sounds really good about now!
I finished ‘Hillbilly Elegy’- based on the
number of lumps in my throat and the tears welling up, my goodness, what a read
– one of those books that you’re sorry to turn the last page and the thoughts
that will return for some time – this is one of MAO’s picks!
learned for next time:
-Don’t take Elvis or any big book or one that
you want to keep – make sure it’s disposable. The Elvis book is like 2 inches
thick, it was a Christmas present that I haven’t read yet and at the airport in
Toronto, set for Thunder Bay, after collecting all that stuff I left behind at
Janet’s, that big duffle bag is extra huge – it weighs in just over the 50
pound allotment and the guy is going to charge me another $75 on top of the
$28.75 I already paid unless I can take a couple of pounds out. I take out
Elvis and the camo hoodie and stuff them in my backpack. It works but I can
barely move with this thing on my back now!
-Fly to Vancouver, stay a few days (other sister
Marnie lives there). Get in a visit and fly out of Vancouver, breaking up the lengthy
flying time – not that I’m going back to Australia, but just saying…
-Pay whatever extra to get good seats.
-Pare down the wardrobe even further – I had an
extra pair of heels, a dress, a pair of dress-up jeans and 4 tops that I didn’t
wear – who am I kidding? Take a smaller suitcase!!
-Biggest lesson, when booking something on Airbnb,
if it seems to be a real deal, no matter how good the reviews are, if it’s
suspiciously inexpensive, do not fall for it!