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Tag Archives: day trips

This past week we had Thursday off for Australia Day. In past years I’ve worked behind the bar, or had a barbecue – opted for anything really, rather than cram myself into a pub with a million sloppy drunk people.  I don’t have any objections to getting sloppy drunk in a bar (see: hobbies)  but I prefer my personal space while I do it.

So Fuller and Andy and I opted to get out of town for the night. We headed down to Berry on the South Coast of Sydney  because I read this article about the best little known beaches in New South Wales and became obsessed with going to 7 mile beach. Berry is this adorable little town with all old timey stuff, Ye Olde Cuckoo Clock Shoppe, etc. It’s very cute and you would probably kill yourself if you lived there.

We stayed above the pub at the Berry Hotel which was cheap and right in the centre of town. When we got there at 9pm on Friday night, everything looked pretty sleepy and quiet. We ate at the Hungry Duck – food was beautiful and the waitress was amazing (not JUST because she let us buy an extra bottle of wine to sneak into our purse for takeaway).  We went back to the hotel room and drank red wine out of teacups and played this card game Wizard until 2am which is like hearts but more fun. Or it WOULD have been more fun if Lara Fuller didn’t cheat so hard.

The next morning we wanted to go for a hike, and Fuller had found this one in Kangaroo Valley, about 40 mins away. She said it was medium – hard and promised rainforest and waterfalls. Which there were:

silly american

But there were also leeches.

We’re like an hour into this really strenous hike. Like seriously, sliding down hills on our bums, hanging onto tarzan vines, no trail. And we get to this pretty waterfall and I’m snapping away on my camera and I look down and see something on my leg and brush it off and IT STICKS. And Andy has to rip a leech off me while I scream.

Which I could have recovered from IF THERE WEREN’T FIVE MORE ON ME.

I basically had a panic attack and aborted our hike, and I didn’t stop freaking out until I finally went in the ocean. I am still thinking about if there may be one deep in my ear having babies.

Here is a convo between Lara and I on gchat today:

me:  oh my gah.trying to google image leeches to show what i mean in my blog bost. freaking out. think i have PTSD

Lara:  haha, leave out leech images – i think that may be best

me:  yeah i had to stop
but if you really want to fuck up your day
google image “leech”
Lara:  nah, totally not going to do that – pretty sure the imagery would make me very unhappy
i did have to google PTSD


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I’ve been slightly high-strung lately (cough… understatement). I worked for two weeks in a row, days at the office and nights at AYH and The Welcome. In efforts to keep me slightly less irritable Nick promised me that this weekend we could do whatever I wanted. Whatever I want will pretty much always = sitting outside and reading/eating.

I looked at a Things to Do in Sydney site and read this article about Garie Beach in Sydney’s Royal National Park and was sold.

We packed sandwiches and set off. The beach is set deep into the National park, on the coast, about an hour drive from our house. We got there about 1 and spent the next few hours wandering around the Coast Track – truly beautiful. One of the best things about Sydney.. you don’t have to drive far outside the city to see an entirely new and stunning place.

they crazy

big wave

lunch break

glamour shot

abrupt end of trail

sun out

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We did a little day trip out to Otago, to visit Chard Farm, producer of some of Nick’s recent favorite reds. The setting is gorgeous, all the vineyards spread along the edges of a huge canyon. We had to take a terrifying dirt road along the edge of a cliff to get to the farm, and I was basically clinging to the roof of the car like a cat begging Nick to slow down (he was going like 8k/hour).

It was worth the trip though. David, the cellar door manager, led us through a tasting of lots of delicious whites and Pinot Noirs (the 2009 Mata-Au Pinot Noirs and the 2009 Tiger Pinot Noir were our winners.)  Austin, the cellar man, gave us a tour behind the scenes, through the cellar and the winemaking process.

Great wine at Chard Farm, and good storytellers as well – would recommend a side trip there if visiting Queenstown.


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Nick at fake monster trucks


My only problem with the Royal Easter Show was there wasn’t enough of it, which was my fault for going on the last night.

Nick’s family had gotten me all worked up about dog diving competitions, massive animal parades and giant vegetable contests. You can imagine how exciting this all sounded. But alas, on the last night it seems they let you pay to go in and look at carnies. Which is okay with me. I’m pretty into carnies. But still.

I also got to experience the show bag phenomenon, which I didn’t really understand until Nick explained that the “WHOLE POINT” of the show is to consume as many lollies as possible in six hours.  Once I saw the “Show Bag Pavillion,” this point was really illustrated. It’s a huge indoor arena filled with stands that sell you all different kinds of candy in Hello Kitty/Sesame Street/ etc. plastic bags.  Not lying.

Mostly, what my Royal Easter Show experience has served to do is cause me to become obsessed with going for multiple full days next year… can’t wait.


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Nick and I took the ferry up to Manly yesterday, and ate a new-ish restaurant, called Whitewater.

It was all a bit fancy for Sunday lunch, but we decided to spoil ourselves, seeing as how we’ve both been putting in crazy hours at work over the last week. I haven’t worked that much since Interskate91 was child-labouring the shit out of me.

(Side note: Dear God, looking at that website is like time traveling. Nothing’s changed since 1998. Even the clip art images are the same ones they used to plaster all over their backroom signage: “If you have time to LEAN, you have time to CLEAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

ANYWAYS. Lunch was good, if a bit underwhelming. The food was actually very good, and my Bloody Mary was like a 7/10 which is way better than average around here.

But our waiter was a total dud, to the point that it was distracting. I was obsessed with the thought that he was going out back to huff airplane glue in between each interaction with us. And he was American, which was extra humiliating, as I’m always banging on about how much superior American service standards are. It’s HIS fault my $30 chicken burger tasted like vague dissatisfaction.

Manly Wharf

Nick on ferry, not amused

shoes on fence

Nick on beach, still not amused


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Here are some of Allie D’s pics from the Blue Mountains. If I didn’t express clearly how disgustingly hungover and innapropriately dressed we were, these should get the message across.

high altitude, high fashion.


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