Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Leaving Sydney - Roadtrip!!!

Well believe it or not, but this Sunday marks the start of week 33!! I have been travelling for 225 days. It also happened to be a really good day.

We are still staying with a good bunch of people in Darlinghurst in Sydney. They allow us to stay for a few days as couch-surfers, while all we have to do is be nice! This morning we got up and went to Hyde Park, a short walk away with Polly and Olly, where after setting it all up we spent the afternoon learning to slackline. This is like tightrope walking but on a flat type of rope, similar to that you would use to tie up stuff on the back of a truck. Its quite hard at first but with a bit of effort and stubbornness, its quite easy to get up and spend a good 20-30 seconds wobbling and walking before you fall off the thing. It was made even stranger by the fact that Polly had painted false moustaches onto Buffy, Olly and herself before we left the house. (I already had a good growth of stubble and didn’t want a false tache!)

The couch surfers with moustaches, in Hyde Park

Me Slacklining!

Mr Kenneth Branagh

Buffy , with Thor!

View of platform 1 from our Hostel dorm!

Me at the Australian Parliament - Canberra
After a few nice hours in the park and a few hundred photos had been taken the weather started to get cold and so we returned to the house. Me and Buffy then went back out into town to get some food and to try and see the stars arrive for the premi̬re of 'Thor', that we had seen advertised at the cinema a couple of days ago. We just happened to be in the right place at the right time as the security staff moved a railing and we ended up right next to the limos as they arrived to drop off the film stars. We got a signature and a photo of Kenneth Branagh as well as 'Alf' from home and away and a couple of the other stars of Thor. The best bit though, was when Thor himself (Chris Hemsworth) an Australian actor turned up and we asked him where his hammer was РHe said it was at home in the closet! It was a good couple of hours though and well worth the wait.

After a good nights sleep we got up and moved back into a hostel in the city, We were due to be up early on Tuesday morning, to catch a train out of the city and to pick up a camper van. We had booked a relocation from Sydney to Melbourne. This is when you pay $5 a day to hire a van, but drop it off where the company needs it. You are basically delivering it for them, but are allowed a few days to get there. Its a cheap and fun way to get around Australia. So we could get up early we had booked into Railway square YHA, which is the closest hostel to the railway station. It is so close that the carriage (Yes, you actually sleep in a converted railway carriage!) we slept in had a window through which we could see the passengers waiting for trains on platform 1. The trains were stopping 12-15 feet away, so you could say it was pretty close.

After a mellow day we met up with Keri again for a couple of beers and a goodbye in Darling Harbour. I will miss Keri like mad. We have got on great while I have been here and I hope she can come and do a bit of travelling with me sometime. It was a nice afternoon with her in a good bar though, before she had to go home!

In the morning we got up and headed out. Th train to Mascot was quick and after a short walk we found the camper van hire place. We had to wait till 10am, to get our relocation confirmed, but shortly after we were in the van and off on a road trip. Its a pretty good van with shower, toilet and kitchen, but we planned to use very little of the facilities, so we didn’t have to clean them.

We drove towards Canberra, which we reached pretty easily after 3 hours or so and parked up in a nice big camper site just out of the city. It was only 3pm, so we went into town to look around. Canberra isn't the most exciting place, but we looked around the film and sound museum as well as taking a good walk around visiting the new parliament, which is a half subterranean building on a hill overlooking the city. We also walked through a nice park and up Anzac Parade, which leads to a spectacular War memorial. The war memorial, Anzac parade and the parliament are all aligned so that at night it makes a spectacular view down the hill and over the river. Its a stunning memorial with lots of smaller memorials along the parade marking wars, battles and people who have served for Australia in various conflicts. There isnt much to do in Canberra, but I think it is worth the visit just to see along these sights. After a bit of food, me and Buffy grabbed the bus back to the camp site, where luckily we got off the bus a stop early, but climbed a rather pathetic security fence into the back of the camp-site and were home before 9pm!

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