Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Australian Awe

A few photos to recap my recent trip to Australia.


Our (my parents and I) started our journey in sunny Sydney. Oh wait, it's winter there, right? Check out those clouds. Winter in Sydney was no colder than summer in San Francisco, though, so we felt right at home. In fact, Sydney seemed like a bit like a union of San Francisco with its color and casual culture, and New York with its metropolitan flair. But the miles and miles or pristine beach made Sydney something quite unique. Read on.


Traveling into the Circular Quay by train, we emerged onto an impressive, sweeping view of the entire Sydney Harbor at once. To our left was the Sydney Harbor Bridge, shown here. To our right we gazed on the Sydney Opera House (see below). This shot of the the bridge in moody weather was taken from a perch in the Opera House designed to resemble a captain's bridge.


This shot sits atop my desktop as we speak. I still can't get over this ship. Is it a boat, or a brick?


Here's one of my favorite shots. On the Eastern shores of the city, one can stroll across miles of the Bondi beach. It's winter, but no one seems to care. Multiple rocky crags jut out into the ocean and make for picturesque perches of the wild beyond.


Our ferry ride to Manly (yes, that's the name of the Northern section of the city) brought us some unexpected torchlike dusk shots of the harbor. It's hard to tell which one is the boat, isn't it? It's as if the Opera House could sail away at any moment.


The ironic thing is that the kid on the left bumped his head on that green sign as he was standing up. Poor thing. He was headed out to Manly, though, and as we all know, the road to Manhood is a difficult and arduous one.


I don't know if they designed their city to look like a painting, but I wouldn't be surprised if everything's made out of canvas. But the bird's for real, that's for sure. I saw him move and fly away. Or did I...?


Back to Bondi, for a sec. Some people swim in swimming pools. Others swim in the ocean. Still others swim in swimming pools that are the ocean. In this pool you get just that--the calm waters of a pool, but also the occasional ocean wave careening up over the wall and down into the pool. It's just a gym, but I wasn't about to ask what their membership fees were.


"Wait, did you spend your entire trip in Sydney?!" Well, no, not quite. We took a spectacular flight to Uluru, where we stayed in Yulara and saw the mighty Ayers Rock. At the time I had no Internet connection but did have Ubuntu Linux newly installed, and what better way to celebrate Uluru than with Ubuntu? (Ubuntu is actually a South African term that means something akin to "humanity toward others"...South African, so at least we're in the right hemisphere.) One of these Ayers Rock shots sat atop my Ubuntu desktop.


And, yes, I did see a kangaroo. His name was "joey," with a lower case "j". That's because, as I would later learn, all baby kangaroos are called "joey"s. We saw him at a fruit stand in Cairns, and knowing it might be my only kangaroo view, I started snapping away as many shots of him as my little camera could carry.

And the rest of Uluru and Cairns? Alas, they're probably better experienced than pictured. Or you can peruse a wider selection of shots here.
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