After a brief visit to the Wollongong art gallery (complete with an impressive selection of indigenous art), I had to leave the ‘Gong and return my rental car to Sydney. I should note that I <3 that rental Toyota and would happily keep it and continue driving around Australia, were it not for lack of funds to do so and the need to return to Aotearoa and do that employment thing.
I didn’t know where I was headed, I didn’t have a map of Wollongong so I just intuited my way out of the city. I had two requirements: a McDonald’s to get some lunch and a route to Sydney. I found myself approaching an intersection where a sign pointed to Sydney at the left, and there was a McDonald’s at the right. Welcome relief for a weary traveller, indeed.
However, getting to Sydney proved to be another matter. I got on a motorway but missed the Sydney turn-off and ended up in a place called Figtree. I somehow ended up back in the ‘Gong and continued to, er, intuit my way around the streets until 30 minutes later I ended up back on the motorway and this time I got on the right road to Sydney.
On Triple-J, John Saffran came and introduced his song of the week, which was “Keep It In Your Pants” by Young MC. His reason for picking it was why, why, why did Young MC pick a pro-abstinence song as a follow-up single for the hot “Bust A Move”. But I didn’t care because it’s one of my favourite songs ever, so it provided my soundtrack as I toodled along the anonymous roads of Sydney, following the little aeroplane signs as I made my way to the airport.
Car was returned, train taken to my hotel here, and crikey it’s hot. I don’t know what the temperature is here, but it’s like Auckland on a really horrible summer’s day. Just walking down the street causes me to sweat. And here’s something – I brought my iPod along with me, but I’ve not listened to it once because somehow it seems more enjoyable to listen to the call of a galah (Yeah, I’m getting into birds. Shut up.) than some random music. But walking down the street in Sydney is so big city-ish, so noisy and bleak and disruptive that I really feel like listenin to my iPod. I see the white headphone cords here. Oh, I see them.
Also seen was the film “The Interpreter”. It was adequate but I don’t think it took full advantage of being able to film in the United Nations. (One of my favourite films ever (totally up there with “BMX Bandits”) is the Hitchcock film “North By Northwest” which had to sneakily film the UN after being denied permission.)
Tomorrow I will attempt to move about Sydney solely through air-conditioned shops, subways and public transport.