Walking Around Sydney

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It’s half way through the night – Saturday night/Sunday morning – and I have just woken up, inspired to relate a few tales from my otherwise boring life! Aside from New Year’s Eve and a computer failure, the only exciting thing that’s happened in my life is a new found interest in fitness and health – walking and eating properly – although I swear it has nothing to do with New Year’s resolutions.

New Year’s Eve was fun. I attended an event Graeme and Ian organised at the Lewisham Hotel called “Retrovision” featuring – you guessed it – music from the 70s and 80s. The music, with a few notable exceptions, wasn’t the usual camp and girly music you might expect; it was an eclectic combination, combining everything from Starship’s “We Built This City” to The Sweet’s “Fox On The Run” and of course, ABBA’s “Dancing Queen”. It was great fun. The crowd was small, but I knew everyone and we all had a great time chatting, dancing and drinking.

There was a curious “sign of the times”, though, when at several minutes past midnight, several people used their mobile phones to SMS friends. I discussed the pros and cons of this at work later in the week, with one bloke observing “oh that’s nice”, while another wondered “why do they have to tell someone what they’re doing, why can’t they just live the moment?”.

When it was all over and done, ABBAMAILER Paul and I headed towards Newtown, hoping to get into the Imperial Hotel, a pub I haven’t been to for ages. Unfortunately, they had reached the “lock up” stage of the night where they were only allowing previous patrons (with stamps) back in – or at least that’s why they told us – so they suggested we try a bar on King Street which neither one of us had heard of before.

I have begun early morning walks and so far I have been successful in maintaing the pattern, getting up at about 5.00-5.30am and walking for an hour or so – at a brisk pace – around such salubrious spots as Darlinghurst and Kings Cross. Although I have been in a number of these locations at that time of the morning, I have never been in these locations at that time and being cold-stone-sober. When you’re sober, you really notice just how “ouot of it” everyone is at that time of the morning… and I don’t just mean a bit pissed, I mean “totally…” Whatever you see the “light” is pretty amazing at this time of the morning, so I’ve been taking lots of photographs.

My early morning walks have also taken me to rather more salubrious spots such as Centennial Park, Darling Harbour, and Circular Quay. I love this photograph taken the other morning at the Opera House showing a coffee cup left over from the night before… it’s like one of those “Signs Of Life” photographs in the paper, but it doesn’t actually show people. You see some odd things at the Opera House at 6.00am, such as a group of backpackers rolling and smoking a bit fat joint, a well-dressed visitor walking around (I think he may have been jet-lagged), people gently exercising and people just sitting watching the ocean. As you move around towards Circular Quay and the Museum Of Contemporary Art those exercising become a little more “aggressive”… they dress “properly” for jogging and they jog with a “serious look” on their faces. I noticed these people don’t seem to make it around to the more serene area of the Sydney Opera House… “too important to look at silly building, exercising, can’t stop”.

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