15 February 2011

S. Knee

Sid Knee is a good place to visit.
I was there last weekend, actually, and want to document it so I don't forget it, or, will have something to remind me about the trip when I forget about it.

Day One:
A red eye flight is not as bad you think. We got to Sid Knee and had the entire day to do stuff.
We made a beeline to the aquarium and wildlife park (We love learning!) and was amazed to see many new exhibits, including giant Lego sculptures.
We strolled (in the rain!) up to The Rocks where we caught the weekly(?) market. A man was selling $200 kangaroo fur pouches and kept slapping the hands of people curious enough to touch them, pronouncing they were "too expensive" and was ushering the market-goers away.
Despite my desire to ruffle them up and run away giggling, we continued our walk through the rainy streets of Sid Knee and saw a car commercial being filmed.
Dinner was delayed when the rain got heavier, after retreating in our hotel for an hour and a half we braved the walk to Billy Kwong, Kylie Kwong's restaurant known for its unique flavours and food combinations (all organic!).
Unfortunately the waiter at the door informed us that there was a 2 hour wait for a table, and with the rain and our achy feet, we didn't feel like waiting around.
Luckily, there was a Vietnamese restaurant down the road, so we ate there instead.
The nuoc cham that accompanied the rice paper rolls and spring rolls was so yummy that I kept it to eat with the left over rice.
John persuaded me to eat a chilli, assuring me that it 'wasn't spicy.'
We spent ten minutes crying in front of each other, coughing and scoffing rice to try and stop the burning.
After dinner we strolled up and down Oxford street, gawking at the flamboyant and poorly dressed homosexuals. Somehow feeling out of place, we found our way into a straight bar called Fringe. A few scotches later the walk back to the hotel didn't seem so far, even when stopping in the book stores that were open at the odd hour.
A disabled man with dirty hair and not many teeth yelled at me to move out of his way... from 50 metres away. He was completely crazy looking and from his scooter looked like Ray Charles with dreadlocks. John carefully repositioned me on the footpath as I just stood there trying to decipher what the hell he was saying. Did it have something to do with Jesus? Salvation? I really had no clue he was directing his rambling at me, but luckily he couldn't walk or else I think he would've attacked me and eaten my shoes.

Day Two:
We slept in, exhausted from our Olympic (and drunk) marathon back to the hotel.
When we finally got up we decided it was a good day to go to Manly.
We caught the free shuttle bus to Circular Quay and jumped on the Ferry, raced an elderly couple to the last pair of seats (they won) but still got a good view of the harbour.
It was cloudy, so we brought the umbrellas purchased the day before "just incase"
Naturally, it rained as soon as we stepped off the ferry, so we quickly took refuge in Oceanworld; basically a smaller version of the aquarium.
The rain didn't quite hold off but reduced to drizzle for the rest of the day. Determined not to let this ruin our holiday, we persevered and went looking for crabs in the rockpools at Shelley Beach. We saw a path leading to a national park and decided to take it, seeing that it connected back to the pier.
The 'national park' turned out to be the lair of 10,000 golden orb spiders who dangled above our heads for the entire 3km walk.
The rain made their webs more visible, thankfully, but I have never hated nature so much in my life.
We escaped the walk early, cutting through what looked like an old folks home, and strolled back into Manly.
A big cup of ice-cream (3 scoops!) made the whole ordeal seem better, and we were ferry-bound back to civilization.
We caught a taxi from the hotel to Cockle Bay for dinner, only to leave the tickets for our shuttle bus to the airport in the back seat. I ran like a madman after the taxi, made a few desperate calls to the operator, flagged down several taxi drivers annoyed that I only wanted to ask them questions. I eventually got hold of the correct taxi company (there are NINE bloody taxi services operating in the CBD) and had them put out an urgent message. We never got the tickets back.
Dinner was rushed and rudely interrupted by the Italian equivalent of the Partridge Family.
The mother was a psycho, probably ushered her tone deaf son to Italy Idol audtions, the sister never ever blinked, and the father insisted there was problems with the bill.
They sang and banged and clapped and clicked and slammed their forks on the table and sand and banged and clapped some more. I was three claps away from stabbing the bitch with a fork when they left.
I have never encountered such rudeness and disregard for other people in my life, and if there were more people in the restaurant I'm sure someone with less patience for I (working in customer service you learn how to shut down) would have butchered them.
The food was great, but we couldn't wait to get away from there.
We got drinks from the tiniest bottle shop in the world, then got drunk and watched TV in the hotel.

Day Three:
We got up early, with the intention of "kick-starting our day the vibe way at the curve cafe" but decided that the catchy phrase rhymed one word too many. We opted for coffee instead.
We started at the Sid Knee Museum and were blown away by the dinosaur and mineral displays. We even purchased an authentic Trilobite fossil and some pretty gemstones from the giftstore.
Decided to do the last touristy thing on our list and went to the top of Sid Knee Tower. Good views but you have to endure the claustrophobic elevator first.
Spotting the art gallery in the distance of these views, we quickly made our way down the wrong street before turning around and beginning our way to the gallery.
We were lucky enough to visit when they were showing the China's First Emperor exhibition, featuring artifacts and some of the terracotta warriors.
Possibly the most fascinating exhibition I've been to, which is surprising since I have no interest in Chinese history.
We had enough time to duck into a kitsch boutique on crown street before we left for the airport, sadly it wasn't worth the visit.
Our flight was delayed half an hour (but thats what you get with Tiger) and I had to "switch off all electronic equipment" half way through my favourite Foals song.

Hopefully I will remember to read this in the future.

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