Posted by: kathandroger | March 4, 2018

Clean up Australia!

It felt a bit like coming back to the civilisation we recognise when flying into Oz. Being useless with modern electronic methods, I was very proud of myself for getting through customs and passport control by using the “e” system. Being one of the first off the plane helped, but my pride was dented more than somewhat to find that the baggage collect was not in operation for another half hour, and I ended up being one of the last off the flight to reach freedom. My lovely daughter and graddaughters were there to meet me, and the shreiks of delight could be heard all over the airport-even theirs were loud. Sydney is always busy-today this was the suburbs at 1pm.image
The pace of life here always amazes me. The cars are all near new, and the affluence of the place is witnessed by the expensive vehicles and also by the price of the loveley local houses; Sydney seems as expensive as London or Paris now. But it all seems so well organised; despite the traffic density cars keep moving and jams are rare.
The mornings here are a delight. At daybreak the local kookaburras start their monkey like chattering and they are then superceded by the squawking parrots which seem to be everywhere. Early rising seems to be normal, and the local traffic is on the move before light. Son in law Bill and I set off soon after 5am one morning for our customary fishing trip, and the road were already busy. I love seeing not only cars parked on the roads, but also frequent and sometimes very large boats.image
I always adore coming through Sydney harbour just before sunrise. The water is alive with rowers, singles, doubles, fours and eights. The boats have bright lights on them and are frequently followed by the coach in his little tinny. Apparently the local championships are soon, so training is at its peak now. We made our way to the fishing mark, about nine miles offshore, only to find that the marker buoy could not be seen due to the rough seas and rain. We turned around and caught some Flathead before making our way back for the early afternoon. I am pleased to report that I was not seasick despite the buffeting, and even managed to eat some chicken rolls whilst landing fish from the rocking vessel!
The spirit of the Australians is somthing that should be imported into Europe. It seems that everyone is up and active, be it surfing, swimming, cycling or anything else. On my way to swim soon after 8am yesterday, a schoolboys cricket match was about to start, and another group had started soccer training. At the pool this morning, we had to vacate the lane swimming because the local over 70’s group were starting their weekly competition. Exercise seems to be a way of life here.
And today is “clean up Australia”day. This day of action was apparently started several years ago and has become nationwide. Groups of Scouts, usually with their families, and lots of other bands, join together to clean up the enviroment for the enjoyment of everyone. It is good fun too.image
The only sad feature I have discovered is the relatively reticence of the locals to say hello. In France the youngsters, maybe only in our rural setting, are always polite and greet us with a smiling “bonjour”. Here the locals often tend to pass with heads down, just like in other cities, and in complete contrast to the joyous greetings we received on our holiday of the past few weeks. A smile and greeting costs nothing, and it makes such a difference. Come on Sydney, you have it all, how about a little happiness?

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