So we got into Sydney at around 8 am on Sunday the 17th. This flight (in coach) wasn’t that bad either (but Mom if you ever come I say spring for First Class!) I waited for the luggage, while Nathan went to exchange the currency. I was waiting on the side of the line to go through “quarantine” when this nice official looking woman came up to me and asked if she could help me – I was the only person not jocking for a position in the line (it was REALLY long – about an hour I would say – you would think I would have tried to save us a place but I couldn’t enter the line b/c they wanted your passport and declaration slips – which of course Nathan had in his possession). So I pointed to Nathan standing at the Currency window and explained the situation. She then started to ask me questions (same as on the declaration slips) –“Do you have any food to declare?” Which I had to say yes b/c the family we are staying with requested Bisquick and York Peppermint Patties. The official looking woman asked if the “patties” had meat in them (so obviously they don’t have them over here in AustraliaJ) I explained what they were so she kept asking questions to which the rest of my answers were no. She said “Fine then –is that your husband in the orange jacket? If so I will stamp your papers and you can get in this other line instead” I said thanks and thought I was going to be able to get in a shorted line – sweet! Nathan was confused as he thought this lady was taking him to jail or something but I said follow me – and much to my excitement – it wasn’t another line at all - I had gotten us a PASS completely!!!! GO MANDY! So LONG story short we by passed the 1 hour long line and were able to meet our friends even sooner. Carolyn and her daughter Julia and her 7 year old son Mitchell were waiting to take us on our first exploration. From the airport, we toured around Sydney by car to Bondi Beach (South of Sydney). (Yes that is correct – we did not go home to shower after our 36 hours of traveling b/c they thought we would get acclimated to the time change better (which was probably better) so I am VERY Greasy in the pictures – GOOD TIMES! Nathan said you could fry up some food in my hair!) So ANYWAY - From Bondi Beach, we went to Mrs McQuarie’s Chair to capture some wonderful views of Fort Denistone, Sydney Opera House, Downtown Sydney and the Harbour Bridge. We then toured lots of the neighborhoods where Carolyn was able to relate them to Atlanta Suburbs – too funny! (Carolyn lived in Atlanta for about 16 months) From here we went to Kings “Bloody” Crossing and saw the Elmane Fountain. From there we went to a local cantina to get bloody famous “Meat Pies”. These are local favorites. After a couple of hours of rest and relaxation in the afternoon (we are staying with Carolyn at her home in Castle Hill), we strolled out to dinner at a local Vietnamese restaurant to meet the rest of the gang. Here we meet Julia’s husband, Peter, and her 4 year old son, Anthony. Now we are going to sleep – long day!
This is a view of Sydney Harbor from High on the mountain side.
Elmane Fountain at Kings “Bloody” Crossing in Downtown Sydney
Sydney Marina - I apologize that I captured this picture of this woman in the photo