Ciarán & Elaine's Travelog

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

January in Sydney

January over here is completely different to January at home thanks to the great weather. Everybody's in a good mood, with the long evenings and beautiful days... So naturally enough we spent plenty of time outdoors enjoying it all, at the beach and the parks and checking out different parts of the city. We also celebrated both our birthdays - yahoo!

For my birthday we had a picnic in the Botanic Gardens, sitting by the water in front of the Opera House watching the sunset with a nice bottle of wine.... fantastic!

Since we arrived in Australia Ciaran's been dying to see a Cassowary. This is a native bird, the size of an ostrich but with a tendency to rip your heart out of your chest if you ever cross him.... I think it must be a man thing to be interested in them! One way or the other we haven't managed to see one so far. With this in mind I surprise him with a trip to the zoo for his birthday, we're going in search of the elusive cassowary.... Murphy's Law, they don't have any at the zoo either..... Not to worry though, it's a beautiful day and we have a great time wandering around in the sunshine, looking at all the animals with great views out over Sydney Harbour.
The search for the cassowary continues....

That night we went into Home which is one of the biggest nightclubs in Sydney (we went there for my birthday too). We had such a great night, sore heads the next day though....

Monday, January 01, 2007

New Years Eve

How exciting to be in Sydney for New Years Eve!

The day started early enough as we wanted to make sure we had a good vantage point for the fireworks. After a big brekkie in Cosmo cafe we headed out to Mort Bay Park in Balmain which was a fantastic spot, right beside the harbour with perfect views of the Harbour Bridge and the city skyline.

The weather was good and it was great fun to spend the day in the park playing games and chatting. Even the police were having a great time, joining in the festivities and spending most of the afternoon playing cricket!
There was about 50 of us altogether, nearly everybody either Irish or British and they estimate about 3000 altogether in the park.

The first set of fireworks went off at 9 o'clock, just after it got dark. They were absolutely amazing so we we're fairly excited to see the main event. With three hours to kill until midnight everybody upped the party mood and drank far too much goon, particularly Mary (who's now known as Wino Mary!) and the sing songs began. Needless to say, fifty Irish & British (and Dutch, Tinus) backpackers can get fairly loud! I'll never be able to listen to 'It's My Life' without thinking of NYE again thanks to Wino Mary repeating the same line about 100 times!!

As midnight got closer the atmosphere was electric, everyone crowded together as the first of the fireworks went off. WOW! They really know how to put on a show over here. It was just amazing, with fireworks exploding for miles and miles in the sky all over the city. In front of us, above us, behind us! The atmosphere was unbelievable and unforgettable....

As we walked back through town after the fireworks the city was jumping. People everywhere, with a big parade going down George Street, with drummers leading the way and everybody dancing. Then it was down to Bondi Beach to wait for the first sunrise of 2007....