Land of Oz

This is going to be a short one because I only spent a little bit of time here. No kangaroo sightings, no barbie, no koalas hopped up on eucalyptus. Those will be prioritized on a future trip. I did, however, spend quite a bit of time on boats. Though not as much as the Kiwis, the Aussies still love their boats. Brothers G & F love boats, and so much so that they both hold a skipper's license (woohoo!).

Boat Views

Here's a fun fact for... me, because apparently everyone else on the planet knew: Sydney Harbour Bridge is more famous than the Sydney Opera House.

Bondi Beach: it's small, it's a city beach, and it's totally awesome. The water is a mix of turquoise and cobalt blue, the waves rock, and the surfers are plentiful. Bondi is quite possibly the best people-watching beach I have visited yet (I write this many weeks later, after hopping around Bali, Lombok, and southern Thailand and sitting on their wonderful beaches). Words and even pictures do no justice to the cool vibe that this place exudes. I loved it.

The drive up to Port Stephens was quite scenic. It also lent me the opportunity to witness one of the country's many quirks.  Each country has its own, and I really enjoy discovering them--a huge part of the joy of traveling! The joy escapes me, however, when the quirk is that burgers will always be cooked all the way through. This other one is a quasi-precious gem, and well, I'm sure that this exists somewhere in the US, but I was quite amused to find a drive through liquor store, conveniently located in the center of town. Why bother getting out of the car to replenish the chilly bin? Drive-thru anything never ceases to amuse me.

Feeling lazy after a few days of just chilling out (read: eating fully cooked burgers and drinking wine), G and I finally got out and hiked up (2nd read: steep 30-minute walk) Mount Tomaree. It is difficult to say what corner of the world is the most beautiful or has the most spectacular scenery. I have been spoiled in my travels--I have a chance to see much of it. I certainly see bad bits and it is all part of the charm, but Port Stephens boasts blues and greens after a brisk walk uphill.

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