May 28, 2012


This Sunday Luke and I were lagging. We were out with some friends on Saturday night for a house warming party and a Sunday morning sleep-in somehow turned into Sunday afternoon. By the time we finally got up, we decided to take it easy for the day and go for a walk on a new beach. Since we only have one full day off a week together we try really hard to do something new with that time. We have pretty much seen most of the eastern suburb beaches now, but we hadn't been to Maroubra. After a few bottles of water and lunch, we headed down to catch the bus.

 The weather was perfect! There was a little bit of wind on the beach, but the sun felt so nice. We walked along the beach then hung out with the fishermen on the rocks watching the waves and surfers collide. There were so few people on what is usually a packed summertime spot that it felt like we were at our own private beach, like we'd reserved it for the day. As we walked along the beach we were once again reminded of how great a city Sydney really is and how much it has grown on us.

We headed back into the city just as the sun was starting to set and the rain clouds headed in. We capped off the night by going down to the harbor to see the Vivid Sydney displays. Photos of that to come!!

May 27, 2012


So, it seems I've become what Luke likes to call, a Pansy. But seriously, its getting cold. Yesterday was about 60 Degrees (15C) and I wanted a coat. Not a sweater or a jacket,  but a coat. Preferably with a sweater underneath it. Herein lies the problem: I have neither a sweater nor a coat. I mean this is Sydney, its supposed to be WARM! I heard people say that it was going to get cold, but 60 degrees isn't actually cold. It just seems that in the last two years with all of my attempts at avoiding winter in every way, my blood has grown thin. 

To help ward off the cold indoors (because Australians don't insulate their homes because they too forget that Sydney gets cold), I have purchased some incredibly fashionable sweatpants that I am strictly forbidden to leave the apartment in. I think it goes well with that purple sweatshirt too don't you?

May 21, 2012

Race Review

I did it! Yesterday morning I woke up at 4:50am, panicked, wondered why I signed up for this in the first place, and headed over to Hyde Park to start the race. I was really nervous. It didn't help that people jogged past me on their way there. I mean seriously, there will be plenty of time for that later. Once I got there, I headed right over to the bag check to make sure I had plenty of time. It was really well organized and easy, until I needed to use the port-o-potty. I waited in line for almost 30 minutes and then didn't really have much more time to be nervous before the race started. So perhaps I should be thankful that there weren't enough toilets for the 10,000 participants?

How cool is this? Look how many crazy people there are in this one city? All of the people around me got me so pumped up and I couldn't wait to get started. I watched the sun rise along the harbor as we ran past. When was the last time you woke up before the sun? I can't remember when it was for me, but I liked it.

As soon as I crossed the start line I was SO excited. It was one of the most incredible feelings being a part of this race. There were literally thousands of people crossing the start line. I started feeling really emotional, like I was really part of something amazing. Forgive me for being so cheesy.

Also forgive me for having such an unsteady hand...

I couldn't believe how much energy I had. I tried to pace myself, but there was so much adrenaline coursing through me and my competitiveness couldn't help but relish in passing people as I booked it up the hills and threw myself down them. I could feel my energy waining a little bit around mile7, and just as I was thinking that I was handed a GU at one of the water stations. It is exactly what I needed. Pure sugar. I ate it slowly and held onto it for a few miles before finally ditching it having eaten about 3/4 of it.

As you can see the views during the race were amazing (mostly). I got to run on roads where I am usually running on paths, so I saw these views from completely different vantage points and it was amazing.  When I finally crossed the finish line I couldn't contain my excitement/emotions and I burst into tears. I know. It took me a few minutes and a few cups of Gatorade, but I finally composed myself enough to find Luke and gloat about what I'd just done.

When's the next one?

May 14, 2012

Manly Scenic Walkway

With another beautiful day in Sydney, and a chance to finally enjoy the good weather, Luke and I hit the dusty trail across the Harbor Bridge to the Manly Scenic Walkway yesterday. Its  10K/6mile trail that winds along the northern coast of the harbor from a place called Spit Bridge all the way to Manly. The first half was a little bit...tough. There were a lot of stairs and they were going up. But the views were incredible. Sometimes we were walking for a few minutes without any view of anything except trees and suddenly it opened up and there was the city skyline or the shining blue Pacific Ocean.

 How cool is this houseboat?

  A nice view of the city over the hill

 We finally had Manly in our sights!

 Even though the sun was shining, walking past this park we remembered it really is the end of Fall here and coming into winter. It is really nice to see some leaves falling and different colored trees. It's amazing how cut off you can be from something as simple as noticing a season change when you stay within the concrete walls of the city.

We rewarded our efforts with a visit to 4 Pines, microbrewery in Manly where they brew their beers on sight. We had heard a lot about it and all the talk is true. It was really good beer and a really great crowd.

May 04, 2012


I've been getting itchy feet lately. I mean not literally, but in the sense that I want to pack my bags and hit the dusty trail. We have been "settled" in Sydney now living and working for almost 6 months (ok living, working was a little bit more of a struggle!). For the past few days I've been reading other travel blogs like This Battered Suitcase, 20-Something Travel, and Ephemerratic and it has been making me soooo excited for when we hit the road again. 

I'm not saying I don't absolutely love Sydney, because finally, I do. It has really grown on me and I truly love the fact that I am sitting on my balcony in the sun whilst complaining about hitting the road! Who do I think I am? Seriously though, Sydney is fantastic. Especially when the sun is out. I love going for walks along Darling Harbour and hopping on a ferry to a new place. I also love where I live and I really enjoy my job too! What was I saying again?

Oh yea, well it all started when Luke and I decided to get a head start on next years adventure by beginning to learn Korean. We have taken some language CDs out at the library and ever since I could start counting in Korean I've had my bags mentally packed. I have been dreaming of the food, the smells, the cultures, the sights and obviously how cheap all of it will be. 

 Hopefully the language hasn't changed much since this Rosetta Stone came out in 1982 
and hopefully my photography gets better before we go to Korea.

But I've got to mentally unpack for Asia and instead stay here in the now. There is still so much to see in Sydney and my little pink notepad is bursting with places to tick off before I set foot outside of the city limits. Not to mention the fact that we still have to travel Australia before we start using our newly acquired language skills!

Let the adventures begin! (or carry on?)

May 01, 2012

Luke's Birthday Weekend

Ok, so I'm a week behind with this, but last weekend (the 21st) was Luke's birthday weekend, and boy did we make a weekend of it! Friday night we enjoyed a few drinks at our usual Friday happy hour spot, King Street Brewhouse. After warming up there we decided to take it elsewhere so that I could stretch out my legs and dance. We headed over to 3 Wise Monkeys. It's sort of a 'backpacker' spot as its called here in Sydney. Most everyone there is young and foreign, which suits us since we are both. After consuming far too many ciders we enjoyed what tasted like the WORLD'S GREATEST kebab on a bench in Darling Harbour. 

Unfortunately, I had to work on Luke's actual birthday, so he headed out to do birthday things with friends until I got back. Now pay attention, because this is the BEST part of the birthday weekend. I had planned a surprise party for Luke inviting all 3 people that we know in Sydney. Just kidding there are a few more than that! But I made sure to get in contact with two of our friends from our time in Switzerland that we haven't seen since we've been here. So basically we haven't seen them for over 3 years! I was super excited to see them myself and I knew that it would be a great surprise for Luke. When I got out of work I went home and told Luke we had a dinner reservation and we headed off to the Australian Youth Hotel to meet everyone. I think he sort of knew I was up to something, but he was really surprised so hurray for a successful birthday party!!

The best part of a birthday is obviously the cake!!

After a drink or two we headed over for a night of dog racing! I have never been to see dog races before and neither have most of the people who came with us, but it did not disappoint. I even won $1.50! But mostly it was great to catch up with old friends and laugh at new ones!

On Sunday Luke and I were both off from work - a rare occurrence, so we wanted to take full advantage and finally start doing some sightseeing! I had read about this island in the Sydney Harbor called Cockatoo Island. It is an old shipyard where they used to build them, but it was also a convict labor camp for a long time. As you may be aware, Sydney's first inhabitants were England's cast offs and their minders - the soldiers. Luke also really likes prisons (I mean not THAT much) and so I knew he would love a place like this. It also had some incredible views back over, you guessed it, the bridge!

I couldn't help thinking while we road across the harbor in the ferry what a beautiful place I'm living in. I love being a tourist in this city and Sunday was no exception.

Its all too easy to settle into a routine when you're working. Sometimes Luke and I forget where we are and last weekend was a really great reminder that we should be out enjoying the sights while we're here instead of saying things like" we're in Sydney for ages" or "we'll do it next weekend". We've got a long list of places to see before we leave this enchanting city so stay tuned because we are definitely back in tourist-mode!