After a relatively rough start to my time Down Under, things settled down nicely. My first night after arriving, I went out with a group from the hostel to a place called World Bar. In one area, there was a karaoke bar (and a bartender who made the best caprioska ever) and in the next area over, there was a silent disco. The concept of this odd event is that when walking through the door, everyone gets a pair of large headphones that you can set on one of two stations. You can see who is listening to what because there is a light on the front of the headphones that is either green or red, depending on the station that you’re listening to. So everyone dances and sings to whatever they’ve got on which may be completely different from the person standing next to them, who they generally aren’t talking to anyways because they can’t hear them without removing their headphones.Like I said…odd.
The next few days were spent walking (a lot) around various areas of Sydney. One rainy day, I went to the free Art Museum right outside of the Botanical Gardens and filled a few hours taking in their impressive collection. One of my favorite parts was an entire floor dedicated to students who had filled the space with their own interpretation of various mediums of art. Beside each display there was a small panel that explained what had inspired their work; I was truly taken aback by the level of intelligence and original thoughts and ideas that these kids exhibited. Afterwards, I intended on visiting another museum down the road, but my rumbling stomach convinced me otherwise so I headed towards China Town. Upon my arrival, I quickly cornered someone who looked to be a local in the area (plus, we were both buying a bubble tea, so she had to be legit) and asked her where she recommended I go for authentic cuisine. She looked at me thoughtfully for a second and then quickly turned around and pointed to a small restaurant that would apparently satisfy my needs. I nodded in appreciation, walked around for about another hour to delay the inevitable, and then returned to the front door. Due to the early hour-or so I told myself-I was the only one who appeared to be dining there. No problem. I took up a table intended for four, removed the multiple massive maps that I had hidden away in my purse in an attempt to not be so blatant a clueless tourist, and settled in to study them while I waited for my food. I had gone on gut instinct, because when I asked the waitress her recommendation she looked at me like I was speaking Chinese or something (ha…ha..) and walked away. After that I just pointed. I ended up ordering a bean curd and seafood soup and some noodle dish with duck.
The soup came first and was huge (I thought Asian portions were smaller?), so by the time I was done eating it I was full. But then the duck and noodles showed up and it looked delicious enough to return my appetite in full force. Excited, I took a gigantic hunk and stuffed it in my mouth, only to start choking on what seemed to be the entire skeletal system of the duck. As every waiter, hostess, cook and passerby watched me, I attempted to discreetly remove the bones-still attached to the meat and skin, mind you-from my mouth. This was not an easy task and I’m afraid that despite my best efforts, I failed miserably. 1 China Town, 0 Courtney.
The next day, I was bound and determined to make it to the Sydney Fish Market. Luckily, the radiant sunshine had reappeared, and I guess I didn’t scare Doug off too badly on our traipse through the Gardens, because he volunteered to join me on my adventure. It was a bit of a walk (but then again, everything in Sydney is), but it was so worth it. I was like a kid in a candy store. Everywhere, they had fish of every color, shape, and size that had all been caught that morning. There were lobsters so red they looked like hard candy versions of themselves, chunks of raw tuna bigger than my thigh, and fresh oysters…so many deliciously different kinds of oysters just begging to be consumed. We settled on a plate of fresh sashimi and a half-dozen of two different kinds of oysters and prepared for a feast. Little did we know that our pre-dining entertainment would be a dock worker smashing in a rat’s head basically right next to the table we were sitting at. Despite the fact that I received an in-depth play-by-play to the show, I managed to maintain my appetite and relished every single bite of the fresh seafood.
Now, I have to get to work (more about that later), so part II of my time in Sydney Ala Bones will have to wait a bit. Hope everyone is having/will have a great Easter weekend! Bis bald~