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Reisverslag Happy Easter!
23 april 2014
Since last Wednesday we finally have been having dry, sunny weather. But that also means that the mosquitos get more active, which most bite me in the most practical places: my feet and my hands..
Thursday was Alex's birthday, so after work I bought him some muffins. I had saved the candle that was in my birthday cake and stuck it in one of the muffins. Prue had forgotten to buy him a cake, so we sung Happy Birthday with the muffin and that was that.
Friday was of course Good Friday, which is a national holiday here. Nobody works, no shops are open and apparently the public transport also doesn't go like normal. The trains were completely abandoned, while normally you get happy to find a seat, and the bus was 20 min later than normal and drove a different route. I only arrived 15 min later than normal, so no problem. My research is going well, the first two weeks of observations are almost done and I'm quite happy with how it's going.
Saturday I went to the Sydney Royal Easter Show! It's a two-week event on the show ground of the Olympic park here in Sydney, which includes many rides, stands, performances and exhibits. Originally it's an agricultural thing, so about half the space is used to showcase sheep, goats, pigs, horses, alpacas and poultry. I watched some sheep shearing, cow milking and pig patting during the morning and was amazed by the hundreds of different appearances of poultry. During the lunchtime there were some performances in the giant stadium with trick horse riding, motorbike jumping and precision driving (driving cars in formation at high speed). During the afternoon I watched the more cultural things: sheep herding with dogs, wood chopping contests and dog shows. A friendly lady explained me some of the rules of dog shows, but I thought it was just silly the way these (mostly fat) people in suits were running around (literally) showing off their dog. The rest of the show were filled with stands, selling all sorts of stuff, which made it very similar to the 'huishoudbeurs' as we know it at home. The food dome had plenty of free food to try out, which came in handy when I got hungry during the afternoon. They also had a hall full of 'showbags', which are packages of products you buy for a lot less than you would usually do in the shops and most people bought about three bags per person! Also a lot of jewelry, very convenient food processors and tools (teleshopping style) as you can usually find in these kinds of markets. The arts & crafts hall was quite nice and showed paintings, photographs, cakes, textiles etc made by different people. Some for sale, others not. There were some very impressive things showcased there. After a nice dish of gnocchi with creamy mushroom and bacon, I went to the stadium for the evening entertainment. First there was a rodeo between New-South-Wales and Queensland (two neighbouring states) which consisted of several rounds: bare back horse riding, saddle riding, bull riding and barrel chase. It was all very impressive and NSW won, which was good for the atmosphere :) The motorbike jumpers and precision drivers came on again, which gave me some time to buy a corncob. Afterwards the really amazing stuff came. The Australiana show was comparable to the opening of an Olympic games, showing off what your country is famous for with huge decorations, music and projections. And then the grande finale: fireworks! The most amazing fireworks for about 20 min straight with fitting music in the background. A great ending to a wonderful day out.
Easter Sunday started with a chocolate bunny waiting in front of my bedroom door. We didn't go to Prue's mom, because she had other visitors, so we'll go there another weekend. We all just hung out around the house; gardening, reading, watching tv. After such a busy day at the Easter Show, that was quite nice.
Monday everyone at the zoo just talked about the visit from the Duke and Duchess, which attended the bird show which has the cockatoos that I'm studying. "They are just like us, so normal" and "She is more beautiful than I thought" were recurring comments :) I was happy to see that much attention went to the royals meeting the bilby, since it is an animal that's on the verge of extinction. To raise awareness and money, they sell chocolate bilbies here instead of bunnies for Easter :)
Yesterday I went to zumba and when I came home a package had arrived for me! My lovely boyfriend had sent me a sausage dog and a card, very sweet :) So now my animal farm is complete: an owl (which was my going away present), a wallaby, a cockatoo and a dog. The chocolate bunny is now still part of the farm, but it probably won't make it till the end of the week ;)
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23 april 2014 16:57 | Door: Wilma
Wat ontzettend leuk om de verslagen te lezen! En fijn dat het allemaal zo goed gaat.
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