In the book Snow Crash, the narrator notes that there are only three things America is still good at: pizza, movies and software although I think he uses cooler words than that. I mentioned in Seattle about software, and as of movies there’s no question. Australia has finally shown me that it’s true about pizza too. What the HELL is with the pizza here? It’s awful! It’s like someone told them “Well, you put down some dough and then put a bunch of shit on it with some cheese and cook it till it cries.” except they didn’t bother to tell them the right kind of shit you put on it so they put stuff like eggs and chicken and BBQ sauce on it.
Anyway, I finally took a little time to wander around Sydney and see some of the sights, but I have to admit I was feeling a little down about wandering around another city and looking at it’s buildings.
The area I was staying in, Kings Cross, is apparently the “evil” capitol of Sydney. That’s where you go for your hookers, your drugs, your booze and your crazy people. I never liked the vibe there at all. Once I finally found my way around a bit I headed down to the harbor by train and checked out the Opera House area by night. It’s really very beautiful and I don’t think my pictures captured it very well. Sydney got their harbor spot on. The whole place is gorgeous.
The next day I headed back, wandered around a bit more and then took the ferry to Manly, which is about 45 minutes away. I read in the Lonely Planet guide I am carrying that it’s a cheap way to get a nice harbor tour and it definitely was. The whole way there is very pretty, and you even pass the inlet (I think that’s the right word) where you get some actual ocean waves. That’s actually the first time I have been in a large boat on ocean water and the swells moved it around quite a bit. A little scary, but I got into it pretty quick. My love for the sea grows. I think it’s this eye patch. It’s very fetching.
Manly was your standard surfer town, and as I didn’t have a wet suit I only got to look at the water, not touch. I only stayed long enough to have a slice of awful pizza and headed back.
I’m a little sad to say that’s about all I did in Sydney. I just wasn’t into it. I did have a run in with the craziest person in the world this morning while eating breakfast and it scared the hell out of me and the rest of the patrons of Joe’s Cafe. So that sucked.
That cemented my idea to head out of city and go to the Blue Mountains, which was the main reason I wanted to come to Sydney at all. I mean, the Opera House is lovely, but I wasn’t there to take in an opera so it was of limited use to me.
This morning I had a nice, if somewhat terrifying breakfast, did some laundry (I have been sweating like a pig and my shirts were awful), booked a room in Katoomba and bought a train ticket to same. The train ride was awesome. I’d love to see it from the ground we traveled over as the cliffs along the edge of the tracks sometimes seemed to be inches away.
Now I am settled in to The Katoomba Mountain Lodge, which is very clean and nice and I’m thinking about some dinner. Tomorrow I’ll either do some hiking or try to book a tour to the nearby caves for some caving. Till then, I give my warm thanks to Mr. “NETGEAR” who is a wide open wireless access point. The first of this trip. Hooray!