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There are a few more vacations days with pictures that I want to remember that I have not posted. I’m going to retro-post the entries. This post is written on 14 August.  I do miss the loveliness of an Australian winter day.

086DC97A-78F3-4719-8223-0965A701034EThis was our last full day in Australia and we packed in as much as humanly possible into our hours.  We started our morning at Taronga Zoo.  It was so easy to hop onto the bus a few steps from our cousin’s house, we could have been home. One of the sweetest things about re-visiting a travel city is that each time we returned to Sydney–we had three stays of varying lengths–we grew more comfortable.  Certainly, there was still lots of the city and surrounds that we did not experience, but because of our cousins’ and friend’s personal tours and our own wandering, by the end of our travels, we moved around the city easily.

The zoo was a bus, a ferry and a cable car from home base.  Julia, who was somewhat tentative about our first cable car, was enthusiastic about ‘climbing’ the rocks via a bucket in the air. She also encouraged me to take more pictures of the Opera House. I am convinced that I have pictures from every angle possible.

 

 

Taronga Zoo has drop dead views of the city. Walking the zoo starts at the top and moves down towards the ferry stop. About half way down, there is a Camp set up for spending the night at the zoo.  Julia would like our next visit to coincide with this unique zoo view.

 

After a morning at the zoo, we joined cousin Steph and my friend, Marianne and her partner, David, for lunch at Bondi’s Iceberg Club for lunch and the incredible view of Bondi Beach.  We visited the beach earlier in our travels.  There were not many surfers in the water during that first visit but on our last day, the water was littered with black wet suits, like herds of seals, waiting for perfect waves.  Food was good, views were superb!  Julia was especially  excited because one of the episodes of Master Chef Australia was shot at the restaurant.  We enjoyed the last half of the show while we stayed with Steph and afterwards on our travels up north.  I hoped that we could watch the first half of the series when we got home but unfortunately, the website only works in Australia.  We found the first two episodes on youtube, I am hoping that someone with a youtube channel will post more.

 

 

 

The beach is sooo much better than my video!  The sky was bluer, the water more varied in color and the surfers so much more visible.  Oh, I love the beach!

After lunch, we bid good-bye to Marianne and David and took a train to cousin Scott’s book store.  Julia would not have complained if I had left her in Scott’s store.  She is thrilled to have a relative who actually OWNES books to sell!  Scott took us to his home and while Julia took down almost every book in his home library, I got to visit with his husband, Christopher.  In a sense, it was meeting Scott and Christopher at Rita’s wedding five years ago in Berkley that planted the seed for this travel adventure.  Scott and Christopher are generous hosts, they have a wonderful house and it was a lovely closing evening.

 

And Julia learned to pronounce Schmutzie, the very cute dog’s name.

After dinner, Scott offered that we stay on to watch the finale of Master Chef Australia but Julia and I wanted to complete the Master Chef experience with Steph who had introduced us to Australian TV.  And so, Scott and Schmutzie drove us home and we stayed up very late on pins and needles waiting to see if Ben or Sashi won.