I had this long rambling intro which I've ditched. Me and Smoopy had a great visit to New South Wales, Australia. I've got to get over the fact that we lost two days in Oz at the beginning of our trip and that we got stuck in Dallas, Texas for three nights on the way back. I will only say this: avoid American Airlines like the plague, and do not fly through the city of Dallas. Qantas Airlines is wonderful.
All told we had two nights in Sydney - and ten nights in Newcastle.
OK...onto the photo show from the Land Down Under!
Sunday, 24 Nov, 9:35am—We are almost there! Party!
9:56am—Amity, Queensland— just outside of Brisbane. After not seeing land for a long time, this is a pretty sight!
5:50pm—Sydney. We had a few beers at the Brisbane airport, eventually our flight left, and here we are! Our traveling is not over yet though—we are headed to Newcastle, on a train. We were supposed to stay in Sydney last night, but obviously, we never made it.
7:19pm— Central Tavern, Sydney. Well, it just gets better—no train to Newcastle. They are doing track work over the weekend, so we now have to take a 2 1/2 hour bus ride. I don't feel like sitting on a bus, just yet—so, lets have a few beers! Time to sit down, relax and digest that we are actually in Oz now.
Monday, 25 Nov, 12:13pm—Newcastle, NSW. We got into town late last night, just before 11pm—nothing was open, and we didn't do anything—just got a good sleep in. Smoopy took this shot while she was out walking in the morning. Love the trees in the road, and the parking between them!
5:01pm—Grand Hotel, Newcastle, NSW. We are supposed to meet Tim Clack here. He's a famous participant of the 365 Bar Crawl and we met in New York three years ago. I always told him we'd visit him someday and today is that day!
6:30pm—Clacky! Shannon will be joining us shortly, then we are headed out for some dinner.
9:05pm—The Dockyard, Newcastle. We had a good dinner here, a handful of drinks, and everyone is happy!
Tuesday, 26 Nov, 12:05pm—Hotel Delany. Clacky is meeting us here to watch Monday night football, 49'ers vs. Redskins. It's 8:05pm Monday back home—this is kind of strange to watch the game live, but it's the next day already ? Newcastle is 16 hours ahead of Baltimore. Thinking about that hurts my head!
5:55pm—Hunter River, Newcastle.
7:54pm—View of Newcastle, from the Pitt Street Reserve in Stockton.
8:02pm—Gladstone Hotel, Stockton, NSW. One of our best stops on the whole trip. This place was great. Funniest part was the Australians here asking me and Smoopy to keep talking, because they wanted to hear our accent. We had a crowd of people wanting to chat, and following us around. I shot a few games of pool. We were told me might have been the only Americans to ever appear at this place. It's a shame we never got back here again on the trip. We just ran out of time. Can't wait for a return visit some day!
10:07pm—Great Northern Hotel, Newcastle. This dude brought the house down on Open Mic night. I've never seen, or heard a "Didgeridoo," but this was pretty cool!
Wednesday, 27 Nov, 1:18pm—Blackbutt Reserve, Newcastle. Kangaroos pretty much chill like this all day long. They don't seem very excitable.
1:24pm—Hello Mr. Emu!
1:43pm—Look who has flown in all the way from the Bronx Zoo! Nice to meet you in person Mr. Bird!
2:00pm—This cute little guy is "Jack."
2:11pm -- Group photo!
2:18pm—The bird is everywhere! He's eyeballing Smoopy's ice cream cone filled with treats for the animals. I think the bird knows that Smoopy hasn't gotten rid of much of the feed—so he thinks he can have the rest.
2:41pm—This is Jack's wife and baby. Koala babies are referred to as Joeys. (I did not know that before today) Anyhow, the Joey jumps on Mom's back, and then they go up the tree, because that's what koalas do.
2:42pm—Mom and Joey at the top. They just hang out here and chill.
3:04pm—This feathered SOB has tracked us down again! He wants that damn cone! Go back to the Bronx, you asshole bird you!
3:07pm—Smoopy gave up and surrendered the whole cone. We are escaping now, while the gettin' is good!
7:56pm—Hamilton Station Hotel, Hamilton, NSW. Bundaberg Rum—I recommend it to anybody—good stuff! We have left the Blackbutt Reserve, and have gone to Hamilton for a meal and a few pubs. Most of the places in the Newcastle area closed by 10:00pm during the week. I only hit one more spot, then went in early. Tomorrow is another day!
Stay tuned for part two next Sunday! Cheers everyone!
Related Posts: Gene’s Bar Exams—Three Years of Marty and the BBC in NYC, Gene’s Bar Exams—Saturday, March 30, 2013—A Half Dozen Bars Around Baltimore On A Saturday Night and Gene’s Bar Exams—A Pittsburgh Bar Crawl.
Bonus Charter Jet For Gene And Smoopy From Jaws the Cabbie!
Jaws the Cabbie sent in this illustration of a chartered jet he's willing to fly for Gene and Smoopy's next trip! Ha! Thanks, Jaws!