Horses, New Homes & Harbours

For our last night in Melbourne we moved to stay with a couple in Essendon, VIC which is just a little further out of the city than we’ve been yet – still only 20 minutes via train. This puts us closer to the airport ready for our flight to Sydney around 6pm tonight.

The couple are very nice and relaxed and we felt at home immediately. Riley and Archer contribute to the excitement and homely dynamic to the house and the place is totally up our street. Meet the horses…..

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Big is an understatement.

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Nap time!

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They made better attempts at distracting Adam from the Playstation than me!

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Archer is the black & white horse, Riley is the ‘lemon’ horse.

After an hour stroll along the creek in the back garden, we returned for an hour to get our fix of American Celebrity Apprentice and had a nap before our flight. A nifty $15 lift to the airport from the couple and we were on our way to Sydney!

The flight was only a little longer than the journey from Bristol to Belfast – and luckily so. Adam was sharing his seat with the lady next to him, not through his decision, nor hers infact. We then experienced a lower back massage for the entirety of the journey from the two toddlers sat behind us who were really enjoying the bounce back cushion on our seats. An uncomfortable but bearable ride. It was over quickly and our suitcases made it safely so no complaints! A chatty taxi man brought us to our next Airbnb stop in Annandale, Sydney. A quiet suburb of the city, close to Rozelle harbour and near to public transport to take us into the centre. We took our chances on not eating an expensive dinner at the airport in the hope that there would be a restaurant nearby that we could grab a bite in – no such luck! So google provided us with what we thought was an Australian equivalent to JustEast and we ordered pizza to our new address hoping it would find us. Our new hosts are not home yet so trust was brought to a whole new level when they left their key under the mat and we let ourselves in and made ourselves at home whilst they were at work! We are continually surprised by the trust and confidence these people have in absolute strangers, but hope that we live up to standards! ..Our pizza and host arrived shortly before 10 and both were fantastic!

Our first day in Sydney was a busy one! We walked and walked (another 11km)! On the advice from our new hosts, we got the light rail from Rozelle Bay to Pyrmont Bay, near Darling Harbour and followed the edge all the way around the piers and towards the Sydney Harbour Bridge. On our way we stopped for lunch, took 100 photos and came across apartments that had their speed boats parked out the front $$$! We weren’t entirely sure where we were in relation to the landmarks but knew that if we just carried on walking we’d eventually make it! We turned a corner on one of the piers and voila! There was the bridge! We took 100 more photos, self timer was useful as we were one of only a few people in and around that area so there was no-one to ask seemed to work out ok!

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When we were done with the bridge we carried on round the docks, past a gigantic cruise liner that was parked in the bay, stopping only for ice-cream we continued onwards to the Opera House.

DSCF3040DSCF3039DSCF3050A little bit of careful hand placement…

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..struggling.

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Capturing a selfie the old fashioned way, without the stick like every other person in Australia – whilst it would be handy if you’re travelling alone, self timer or an arm stretch works just as well!

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We also caught a glimpse of the cutest little Koala sat in the entrance of WildLife Sydney zoo, he was very patient with all the tourists and kept us entertained with his slow and slightly misjudged movements.

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We walked further on through the Botanical Gardens, and heard the sounds of so many different birds it became a challenge to try and find them. We did see plenty of White Ibis, which were quite peculiar with their long beaks.

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Adam found his ideal tree…

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We saw spiders that we had no idea whether they were dangerous or not, however were not going to take the risk! This photo was taken using maximum zoom.

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And we made wishes at the wishing tree, walking round it 3 times forward, and 3 backward – which we thought was a joke that the locals played on tourists to see if they would actually do it. We did.

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We walked so far around the bay that the Opera House and Harbour Bridge had now aligned. If it wasn’t for the overcast sky making it really hard to get the photo without looking a bit gloomy, this photo would have been much better! We’ll probably  return here again before we leave Sydney – even if just to lay around on the grass and take in the surroundings.

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Shortly after taking the photo we experienced a random heavy downpour and thunder, so took solace under the dense trees. It rained a lot, but only for 5-10 minutes. As a result, Adam’s flip flops became ice skates on the shiny and wet concrete slabs in the city – both entertaining (for me) and life threatening.

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We stopped at the busiest supermarket ever on our walk towards Central station for the light rail home. There were people everywhere. Many more people than in Melbourme. It was war of the basket and a race for who could grab the last packet of decent looking chicken. Carrying our heavy bags all the way down George St, we finally found Central, used our Opal cards (like Oyster cards) successfully this time and were en route home.

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