Australia 2011PhotographySydney

Australia 2011 Part 3

Thursday 7th April

Today has been wonderful. What a scorcher!

We decided to investigate the botanical gardens in more detail. In hindsight I kinda wish we hadn’t!! It’s absolutely brilliant but it’s full of bats and spiders and weird birds and plants. It’s all a bit much to take in!

We walked in and had a nosy around some of the plants and exhibition notes and at every turn we were greeted by spiders in webs as big as ropes. Check this out:

That doesn’t seem so big but that’s just one part of a hugely complicated structure. And like I say, they were everywhere. Add to that the reputation Aus has for poisonous and deadly spiders, you kinda just shit yourself!

However, spiders are nothing compared to bats! We could hear this screeching that sounded like cats fighting. We couldn’t see anything. I saw something fly overhead and land in a tree. I went to investigate further.

Grey-headed Flying Foxes!

They are huge as well. They are one of the largest in the bat family, can weigh up to 1kg and have a wingspan of up to 1 metre!! We found out in the gift shop that the park is usually host to around 8,000 bats but because of all the destruction being done to the environment in the name of progress, it’s currently host to around 25,000 bats. All hanging upside down in the trees through the day and at sunset they all take off together to feed. They are vegetarian. They are also damaging all the trees and while the folk at the botanics are doing all they can to gently remove them and keep them away, they essentially have nowhere else to go. Good one humans!

We also saw this little fella:

And these guys:

I keep hearing galahs but I have yet to see one. I’ll get you my pretty…

What I really loved was the views. They made me fall in love with Sydney in the space of an hour.

Especially this one:

This is the view over Farm Cove into Sydney Harbour, taking in the bridge and the Opera House.

Just around the corner, Mrs Macquarie has her own chair carved into the rock face where she used to sit and ponder. Probably wondering why she was with the horrible bastard that was her Governor husband. Or maybe pondering questions like “Why won’t the dark people conform to our ways? Why won’t they wear our clothes and act like us? Why won’t they accept the land grants that Mr Macquarie is giving them for the land that’s already theirs?”

You get the point right?

This is more a dig at the English than the Aussies. Well, maybe the Scottish. Australia is founded on a truly terrible history (see Sunday’s post).

On the walk back we found a really cool shortcut and we came upon Harry’s Café De Wheels. A meat pie shop that’s been on the harbour of Woolloomooloo since 1945. Naturally I obliged and bought myself a pie. It was delicious! Everything a meat pie should be!

Back at the flat we settled down for dinner and some Aussie TV. My favourite was a program for inventors but as far as I could tell it was just people googling shit already invented in the UK, refining it slightly and claiming it as their own. OK, that’s perhaps not fair but had they actually used Google they would’ve realised the inventions already existed and they could just import them for a fraction of the hassle. Otherwise it’s a classic case of monkeys on an island.

Part 4 coming up…

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