Sunday, April 19, 2009

Day 34....in which I have bad timing

Tim did his last Sydney run that morning. He explained it might take him longer since he couldn't take the train back like he usually does. I told him to take his time because I could use this time to start packing.

I think I got a lot done which made me feel less stressed about the rest of the day.

Jack might have taken these photos while I packed. Or maybe he took them later during the day.....





Tim returned from his run.




And we set out on another journey.

The plan for that day was for Jack and Tim to go to the Powerhouse Museum together. They loved it enough to return. I opted out of the experience. I was trying to decide if I wanted to go to the Royal Botanical Gardens or try for the psychic again.

I did the latter. I don't know if it was just about the psychic. I think I also felt this pull to go to the Rocks. I'm not sure why.

I walked with Tim and Jack towards Darling Harbour. Then I walked north on George Street. I stopped at Darrel Lea to buy a healthy breakfast.

I walked a little bit more and then sat down to eat my candy bar.

Meanwhile, Tim and Jack were having fun at the Powerhouse Museum.



I'm wondering what they ate for breakfast.

I was a bit nervous about seeing the psychic. I wasn't sure if I even wanted to do it. But it came to the point that I felt if I didn't do it, I'd regret it. And seeing that this was the fourth time I was going to the place; there must have a been a part of me that really wanted to do it.

By the time I got to Argyle Street, I decided I WOULD do it.

When I got to the Argyle Oracle, they told me they were booked for the next two hours. I could make an appointment for later in the day.

I decided to skip it.

I didn't want to wait around that long.

I didn't want to have to return.

And I guess as there was a part of me that wanted to do it, there was also a part of me that didn't want to do it.

I felt fairly relieved.

I think one of the reasons I had wanted to go was I'm always hoping to get the answer to my big question.

Why the hell did I become so obsessed with Australia? Was it just random? Is it my destiny? Is there a reason behind it? Is one thing supposed to lead to another? And if so, have I reached what I'm supposed to reach yet?

But at this point, all those questions didn't matter to me all that much. For the most part, my obsession with Australia has led me to the most wonderful things. When I'm happy with it all, I think to myself....I don't need to ask why. I need to just say thank you.

Australia is a blessing to me.

For now I think that's all that matters.

Anyway....


I started heading back towards Jack and Tim.

I walked south on Kent Street. Although the psychic thing didn't work out, I was glad I had went. It gave me a chance to walk in an area I hadn't walked in before.

I stopped at Babycakes and got another little snack.

I then walked through Darling Harbour towards the Powerhouse Museum. I think maybe I sent a message to Tim.

On the way there, I passed a tourism place that had brochures. I glanced at them. A man working there tried to push a tour on me. I explained that this was our last day in Australia. I did take the opportunity to ask him if he knew anything about Victoria. We're thinking of making that state our focal point the next time we come to Australia. He did know about it. He explained how Melbourne has a grid system and it's easy to get around. I asked him if there were beaches in Victoria. I know about the Great Ocean Road and stuff like the Twelve Apostles. I know there's an ocean there. I've seen the map. I just hadn't heard much about Victoria beaches in terms of swimming, surfing, and all that stuff. I guess I associate that type of beach more with New South Wales, Queensland, and Western Australia. Beaches don't really come to mind for me when I think of South Australia, NT, and Victoria. I don't know why.

The tourist man told me there were beaches like that though. He mentioned something called Bell's Beach.

At some point, I got a message from Tim. He had used a pay phone. His phone wasn't working. He told me to meet them at Galaxy World in Market City.

I went there and, sat on a bench in front of the place, and waited. I sort of had to pee, so I went to the toilets. They looked really gross so I decided I could probably wait.

I watched people play the Dance Dance Revolution thing.

When Tim and Jack arrived, we let Jack play a few games in the arcade. Then we went to eat lunch at the food court. There was so much food to choose from, and I picked the exact same thing I had eaten last time....soup from Mr. Ramen.



I do this with food a lot. There's a lot of things I want to try, but if I really like something I don't want to give up that dish. If it's a restaurant that we can (and do) go to frequently, then I can switch off between getting a new dish and getting my trusted favorite. But if it's a restaurant we don't go to often enough, I usually want to skip being adventurous and get my favorite thing.

I have the same struggle with traveling.

I want to see so many places in Australia. I have a huge list. But then I also want to return to my favorite places. It's hard to balance all that. Although this time we left more with a mindset of wanting to see new places. Well, I think Tim always had that mindset. I think he was fine with constantly returning to Australia. I think he was a little less okay with returning to Sydney over and over. And now I'm ready to expand my horizons. Actually, I might get a way to have my cake and eat it too. I think when Tim's with us, we'll travel around and see new places. Then when he leaves to go to back to work in America, Jack and I will stay in Sydney and enjoy the old and familiar.

I finally gave up avoiding the gross, and used the toilets there.

After that we went to this candy stand that had looked cute from far away. When we got closer, we realized the focus of the shop was American candy! I thought that was funny. We actually bought something this time. Chocolate Skittles. But I associate Skittles with Australia and America. I don't even think we have chocolate Skittles; at least not on the mainland. I did see it in Hawaii.

Tim thought the chocolate Skittles were disgusting. I liked them though.

On our walk home, we had a funny moment. I sometimes have accents pop out of my mouth. Usually, it's Australian. But I also get a Chicago one every so often. And if I'm scared while driving, I'll sometimes start rambling in a British accent. I don't plan on these things happening. They just do. Well, Jack asked me a question and the answer was Royal Copenhagen. But when I said Copenhagen, for some reason, I sounded like a Japanese man. I don't know why or how that happened, but Jack and I thought it was hilarious. We shared a huge laugh. I had a hard time stopping. Jack calls these moments of mine laugh attacks. He always seems delighted to see me having one. He kept asking me to say Copenhagen again. I tried to stop laughing enough to tell him it's not something I can do on purpose. It was funny, but kind of not because my body was sore, and when I laughed it actually hurt a bit.

Eventually I stopped laughing, and eventually we made it back towards are neighborhood.

Jack and I went to Duffy's to get him an apple. He had apple cravings. I bought myself a paw paw. We also bought candy for the upcoming airplane ride. I picked out licorice bullets and Jack picked out another bag of Allen's Party Mix. When I got home, I put it all in a little reusable container.

We ate our fruit.

We packed more.

We cleaned.

Our plans later that evening were to walk down Oxford Street. Here we had an apartment right next to Oxford and we hadn't walked down the street since we came back from the South Coast. I had declared earlier that I was sick of it. I had seen enough of that street in our few days before Tasmania. But now I was regretting my neglect of Oxford. I was regretting the fact that we had ignored that whole area; Paddington and all that. Maybe we shouldn't have skipped Bondi. Maybe we should have at least walked near there.

I told Tim I wanted to go to Oxford. He seemed a bit surprised at me for wanting this, but he seemed ready to go along with it.

We would do that later in the evening. Maybe we'd eat dinner somewhere along there.

Before that though Tim went to the post office to mail back our internet thingie. I can't remember if he actually mailed it back at that time; or if he just went to buy the mailer so he could mail it the next morning.

Jack and I got bored waiting for him. I suggested we start walking on Oxford. Tim could meet us later. I wrote him a little note and left it on the table.

We left the apartment and went downstairs. We walked towards Oxford, and I suddenly remembered Tim's phone wasn't working. I figured maybe by now it would be okay. But just in case, I thought it might be better if we make an attempt to find him. We headed to the post office. It was closed.

Now I should have just gone back up to the apartment and waited for Tim.

But I'm not always that smart.

Jack and I were out, and we decided to continue on our way.

We walked down Oxford towards Paddington.

I tried sending Tim messages. Oh, and I think he sent me a message too. But it was from a pay phone and when I tried messaging him back, nothing happened.

I was all torn at this point. I got it into my head suddenly that I wanted to do some kind of mega-walk. I think I wanted to end up in Bondi or something. I have no idea where my brain was a this point. And I felt guilty that we had left without Tim like that. I wanted him to be with us. Yet I didn't want to have to walk all the way back to the apartment. If we did that, I knew it was unlikely that we'd return.

Jack and I stopped at a used bookstore. Berkelou. It was a really cool store and I was angry at myself for not finding it before. We spent several minutes there. Jack looked at the children's section and I looked at the Australian section. I guess at some point there I decided we needed to go back to the apartment. I felt bad that we weren't with Tim on our last night here.

We left the bookstore and Jack suddenly said he had to use the toilet.

Shit.

Oxford Street is one of those places where it seems very unlikely to find a toilet. Although now I'm wondering if the bookstore had one. They probably did.

Anyway, I didn't think about that back then.

I started freaking out about finding a toilet fast enough. Jack told me not to worry. We were close to the apartment.

But we really weren't.

We had at least a ten-twenty minute walk. That's not too bad. But when Jack says he has to use the toilet, I'm never sure if he means he can wait a few minutes or he has to go NOW.

I rushed him through Oxford.

When we started off on our Oxford adventure, things had been fairly quiet. Now there was a pretty big crowd. Why? It was Mardi Gras tomorrow. I had totally forgotten that when I had made our plans to spend the night hanging out on Oxford. So, that's why Tim had looked at me strange when I had mentioned wanting to walk on Oxford Street. He knows I hate massive crowds.

So, Jack and I had to dart through masses of gay men. Strangely, I don't remember seeing many women. It was just men, men, and more men. I mean I know it's a gay thing going on there, but where the hell were all the lesbians? Maybe I just didn't notice them. Or maybe they go somewhere else?

We made it to the toilet on time.

I was sweating when we got to the apartment because we ended up running.

Tim had left a note saying he was searching for us on Oxford.

I feared we'd never manage to get together that night. I also feared Tim would be mad at me. I was a bit mad at me. And if Tim had done what I had done, I'd probably be mad.

Okay. I guess Tim hadn't returned the Internet thing yet because it says in my notes that Jack and I both used our waiting time to check our email. Jack got an email back from Judy Blume! We were both excited about that.

Tim returned. He wasn't mad. I think he was actually more amused. We laughed about Jack and I darting through the gay men crowds to get to the toilet. And I think we were all just relieved about being together again.

We tried to decide where to eat. I vetoed Oxford. I didn't want to face the crowds and I figured it would get even worse.

We all vetoed Asian food. We were so sick of Asian food. But it seemed that most of the good restaurants close by were Asian.

We ended up finding a pizza place, thankfully.



I got something cheesy and vegetarian.

Jack wanted a Texas pizza. He and Tim shared that. I wish I remembered what was on it.

For dessert, we shared a gelato sundae.



While we finished eating some firetrucks arrived next door. Tim took pictures. That's what men tend to do when disaster happens. Am I stereotyping? Oops. Sorry.



We finished eating. Then we walked back to our apartment for our last sleep in Australia.