First up on the grand ol’ adventure is the City of Sydney. I was only here for 5 days, but I got a good feel for the city and they way they go about things.
And oh my god is it vast.
Sydney just goes on…and on and on. Downtown is a maze of 20 story towers, the shopping centres are all intertwined and utterly intimidating and the sheer volume of stuff that is crammed into every nook and cranny is impressive.
But its not what is here that’s amazing, its the feel of the place – its alive.
Think back to the city, in the UK – any big city. Cold, people are disinterested, the weather is meh at best and the greens and parks are empty, save for a billowing Tesco bag or a poor old man picking up his dog’s business.
Sydney is so the opposite of that it’s an eye opener into how a city should be.
Everyone is either running, working, exercising in groups in the park or on their way to somewhere. The city’s streets are busy but efficient, public transport is clean and functions flawlessly. The Ferries come and go without a pause, just as important to the tourist/worker’s hustle and bustle as everything else. There are swimming pools, exercise equipment, and water fountains everywhere. Information for the city graces every billboard.
Oh, the billboards. Each one seems to reinforce a “Keep Sydney moving Forward” theme going. There’s a genuine sense of commitment to the city by the city, and it shows. At night, the place is still breathing, pulsing with the rhythm and melody of a place always moving onward.
It is such a sharp contrast to the grey/drab dead towns of back home that I’m still trying to find the cynical side of it. But no – Sydney is just this insanely busy place that’s got a future, and wants everyone there to invest in its future.
Having said that, it’s bastard expensive. Like, 12 sterling for a 6 pack expensive. It hurts spending money here, especially if you’re noticeably tight-fisted for a fucking Welshman.
The fact that it happens to exist on an amazing natural landscape just adds to the wonder. Bondi Beach and the pacific coastline is awe inspiring, the harbour itself is staggering in scale (even has some of the old buildings from the colonial days sitting there.)
I’m genuinely very curious about Sydney’s history, especially when I compare its scale and adaptation to modern technology compared to our own. Mostly, by seeing how we’ve managed to sit still while the new world soars on by.
I managed to get a few sightseeing trips done while there, but Sydney was not much more than a stopping point toward something else. Now, I’ve made my way to Byron Bay, to do two things – make my way up the east coast of Australia, and surf.
Yes I said surf.
It’s either going to be the best thing in the world or I’m going to knock my own teeth out with the surfboard.
Till next time world!