Sunday, March 3, 2013

Sydney Day Three and Four

Monday, Day three: We start out the day at the top of the hop-on hop-off bus. The weather is cloudy, intermittent showers are forecast.  We get out at the Maritime museum and decide to do the old ship tours first as it is dry. Unfortunately it starts to rain heavy before we finish reading about the vessels.  We tour around the Vampire an old WW II destroyer. William goes on the adjacent submarine. I stay to chat with the docent.
William with the shell loader

The Vampire

The replica of the HMS Endeavor, Captain Cook's ship is interesting even above decks. I like the latrine. It is just a thick plank with a hole in it over the stern. The dirty rope next to it is the toilet paper.
carved head on the deck

the latrine

looking up the mast

the dirty rope is the toilet paper
William and The Endeavor

From the museum we take the ferry over to Circular Quay, pronounced Key, in Aussie, and walk to the Opera House.  A coupon for lunch comes with our tour ticket and we take advantage of it.

The opera house tour is amazing. I wish we did have the opportunity to see a performance. There was a slight problem with cost and time over runs. It cost 25 times more than the first estimate and took 4 times as long to build.
The foyer of the biggest hall

The steel beams

Fluted wooden ceiling

The sail tiles are actually cream and beige.

The architects room

From the opera house back to Circular Quay where we discover the 555 free shuttle bus that travels to quite a few places in the downtown area. Of course it gets crowded.  We dine near the parade route and find a reasonable place to watch the parade.  This is a gay pride Mardi Gras parade. I imagine the San Francisco gay pride parade must be similar.  Lots of people in various clubs or groups dressed up and marching, some floats, lots of participation by city affiliated people, lifeguards, firemen, etc.  Lots of swirls of bright colors.

William buys us high stools to stand on. After an hour and 1/2 my feet get tired and he helped me down.
The parade is about over any way and we give the high stools to another couple. It's been a long day
Others on high stools

William on high stool. By this time I was down and sitting on mine.

Tuesday day four in Sydney: We get up early and make an early train to Circular Quay (key). We catch the 840 ferry to Manley. Not many people on board this early. As we approach the strait we see the ferry coming toward us starting to really roll in the wind, so we are semi prepared for the high winds and splashes. We get splashed a bit and I go inside.  Just before we arrive we notice a lot of kayaks in the water.  When we arrive we hear contestants coming in to the finish in the Sydney-to-Manley kayak race.  An 11 kilometer race won by someone who arrived at 840 after an 800 start time.  Most of these kayaks are skinny racing kayaks.

We walk around the beach. One of the signs on the walk says watch out for penguins. Maybe not at this time of year.  We have a coffee and then ride back.

The open front deck is packed but we have excellent seats for the coming adventure. At the strait the wind whips in and the boat dips down and the spray pounds onto the deck. The Chinese girls next to me and I laugh hysterically as people scream and try to dash in.  Some are totally soaked.
The strait

The Chinese girls don't speak English, but when the trip settles down I find an older chaperone and ask what sport team they are. We  are traveling with the Chinese National Women's Rugby team.
William gets some lovely shots of the Sydney skyline.

After we land we head for a walk through the botanical gardens.

Then to the New South Wales Art Gallery. We have an excellent lunch here.

We wander on to the Powerhouse Museum which I did not think I would like, but it really is a good museum.

Then we take the sky walk to Paddy's Market, which closes at 5PM. Many of the shops are closing, but we by a few bits and head into the produce department where the vendors are trying to sell the last of their produce. Maybe I should have bought that kangaroo skin? Such a bargain. Only $35. Since we will be heading out in a car tomorrow, we buy some grapes and avocados.

Hertz and out of town here we come in the morning.

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