Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Australia ~ Hoo Roo, Australia

Getting back to Tokyo Village Youth Hostel late Tuesday night meant it was tough getting up Wednsday morning. ( does staying IN a youth hostel mean you're young ? I hope so ). But we checked out with time to walk to Darling Harbour for breakfast. Darling Harbour is one of our favorite spots in Sydney. It was a area of run down docks and abandoned wharehouses for years. But in 1984, after about after 150 years of industrial use, the NSW State Government decided to redevelope the Darling Harbor area and to "return it to the people of Sydney". It is now a vibrant combination of boat docks, shopping, outdoor parks, museums, resturaunts, hotels, the Sydney Aquarium, Chinese Gardens, IMAX....and a wonderfull 104 year old swing-span bridge. One of the oldest electrified swing-span bridges in the world, it once carried thousands of cars a day, but now is a pedestrian walkway with an elevated monorail track. It still opens on weekends several times a day. Sydney has great public transportation; trains, busses, monorail and the trams (but only a few, most were removed in the 1960's....Melbourne wisely kept their's and now the monorail is one of that city's most famous landmarks). We ate breaky sitting at a second floor cafe overlooking the harbour...perfect. Hopped the train to the Airport, boarded the plane, and settled in for a 13 hour ride (thats just to San Fransisco) then a couple hours layover, and a final flight to Portland. Coming in for landing at PDX Stephanie looked out the window at the grey drizzle and said "Despite the weather,I really do love Oregon" We were both glad to be home...living out of your suitcase for three weeks starts to get old.

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