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Sydney - 2006

Tuesday, October 3rd, 2006         low/high temp: 14-19C (58-66F)
                                                       low/high humidity: 49-88 %
Wednesday, October 4th, 2006       low/high temp: 12-21C (55-70F)
                                                       low/high humidity: 37-77 %

    My overall impression of Sydney was positive.  That being said, we found the 'culture shock' a bit odd.  While the population obviously spoke English, they also clearly had a different set of expressions for many things.
    I have NEVER felt so safe or secure in a large city anywhere I've been before.  It was an odd experience, noticing the fact that there was absolutely NO need for concern for 'security' or safety in such a large city.  I'm not sure why, but having chatted with others who have been to Oz, they also commented on the same 'sense of security' not only in Sydney, but in most any city, town or village they visited.  While I cannot explain it, I have to honestly agree with that 'feeling'.
    I was disappointed in the fact that the architecture was so 'modern' compared to Europe.  That being said, I can honestly say that my expectations were probably too high.  I am not a huge fan of modern architecture, and the older buildings that we visited in the very short time we had, one full day, were generally made of sand-stone.  Now, I seriously have to doubt the architects who decided to work with this porous material so close to the bay and ocean.  While lovely, the long term integrity of these buildings should have been suspect to even the most casual observer 100 years ago.  Also, Australia is a fairly young nation, even younger than the States.

The general architecture in downtown Sydney is quite modern.  Once in a while, a sandstone shows up, but overall, steel and glass are the materials of choice it seems.  I did like the monorail stations, though (The round tube over the rail).

Cindy catches me enjoying the        See , pretty modern buildings.        Now, really entering the gardens.
view at the Royal Botanic Garden.

Cindy LOVES purple, and all those purple flowers...  She was in heaven.  Yup, lots of pollen.

I liked that tree.                            This was one quick bird.                 Native plant starts.

These birds seemed to enjoy the shade and seeds from this tree.            Aloe.  My best friend!

Nice view there.                         Cindy gets a leg up for a better shot.    There's my girl again...

You don't see this every day!
Please WALK on the grass...

Man, that's one big gnarled tree!

Cindy Loves her fountains, and this one was particularly lovely.
Cindy liked the white, lavender and violet flowers on this bush...

I loved the look of this house, but moving back got the tree, too...       The Sydney Government House.
It must have been a servants quarters or some such...                           The day ended in 'Y', closed...

The Sydney Harbour Bridge.  If you look closely, you can see people up there walking!
It was WINDY!!  See the flags!  Maybe on a calm day with more time.

Of course, we had to stop by the Sydney Opera House.  The tour was pricey, so we decided the outside was good enough.

We took a ferry from the Sydney Circular Quay to Manley.  On the way, we saw some very nice sites.  Another beach, and a place for us to try to take some photos of the two of us.  We really liked the one on the upper right.

Sort of reminds me of the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree...                    I liked this shot, too...

Playing with camera settings.          A tribute to the loss of the Naval      I am guessing this was the port-master
                                                    vessel HMAS Sydney.                        docking area.

In the park, many chess boards.       Cindy and her fountains, Archibald Fountain, in Hyde Park, in front of the Cathedral.
This park has a beautiful avenue of Fig Trees, but the light didn't let us get any good shots of it when we noticed them.

Cindy couldn't get enough of this fountain.  Many mythic characters depicted.  Paul, another canon!!!

Above and below are some photos of St. Mary's Cathedral (designated a Minor Basilica).
I was reading that this beautiful building was completed less than 80 years ago and appears to be made of sandstone.
Apparently, due to the porous nature, it has apparently already required restoration once!
The spires on the towers were not actually completed until the year 2000!
It was worn so badly, that we couldn't even read the cornerstone!
It is, however, a VERY lovely testament to the builders skill!
Very cool gargoyles, They direct the water into the downspouts!
I actually wish it had been raining so I could see/hear the water running.

Off we go to Tahiti!                       The Australian Coast looks awesome!    There's Sydney Airport!

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