With Fraser (understandably) fretting about having missed one flight, we left the nice lounge (OMGLOUNGE) about half an hour before our flight was due to take off and made our way through security to the departure lounge. Only problem was, when we got there the flight was already 10 minutes delayed and the delay grew as time wore on … the flight after ours left before ours, and in the end there was about a 40 minute delay. The flight was due to take 55 minutes but we ended up flying around a bit over Canberra, so we didn’t get into Sydney until well after 5pm. We eventually arrived at Auntie’s around 6.30.
Gaaah. That was more than 8 hours after we left home. Then I discovered that I had left my mobile phone charger at home (brought the old one … oops) – so if you have sent me any messages this weekend, don’t expect me to get them until LATE Monday.
Out for nice dinner at a restaurant with a food porn menu (sounds fantastic when you read it, but ultimately unsatisfying with no follow-through – although the bread rolls and chocolate syrup were great), bought postcards and stamps, kids had icecream.
Great to see Auntie, and always interesting to visit her very unusual home. She lives in an old, rent-controlled building in The Rocks – very inner Sydney. Initially, she took the basement flat which is one big bedsit room with a small attached kitchen (she talks about her “75 year old oven” and we think she might be being generous), shared outside toilet and bathroom. There’s another flat on the ground floor that notionally shares the downstairs bathroom and toilet, then two more on the first floor that share a rickety bathroom halfway up the stairs. In recent years, Auntie has taken the larger upstairs flat (2 rooms) as a guest room/living area – so with us visiting, she’s in the guest room and we are in the downstairs bedsit. I’ll try to take some photos over the weekend – it’s certainly an interesting place to live.
Now this works great for us – fantastic location, no need for expensive inner-Sydney hotels. It’s wonderful of her to put us up, and we always enjoy staying with Auntie.
That said … Auntie was single for a long time. She slept alone. And she only has a double bed. Which means that Fraser’s feet hang out the end – but worse, there’s a bit “person groove” in the mattress. With two in the double bed, we end up exercising our abs to try to stay at the tops of the V shape – failing, and falling together. I “sleep hot” so poor Fraser spent half of last night with his feet hanging out the end of the bed (cold) and the rest of him under the covers with me (way too hot). He ended up retrieving cushions from the sofa and wedging them between us (I called it his “modesty barrier”) so that I wouldn’t annoy him with OMGTheHotnessOfMe.
I moved to the sofa at around 6am and we both got more sleep – will plan to spend the night there tonight. The girls are sharing a fold-out sofa bed which at least seems to work well. I think if Otto shared the double with me I would probably roll onto her and suffocate her.
Using the bathroom is always a challenge – you tend to take off as much as possible inside, then run, shivering, across the asphalt to the bathroom (ow! ow! ow!), turn the water on nice and hot and then shower, hoping that the residual heat from the shower will at least see you back into the house and over the the heater. At least, that’s my approach.
Ack! I suspect that sounds like a whine – when it is actually an attempt at an amusing observation on a pretty funny way to spend a weekend. Meanwhile, there are trains over the harbour bridge (almost just outside the window), a noisy pub (with live music?) across the road and a market that started being setup outside at 5am.
Plan for tonight: I go to bed when the girls do, then Fraser wakes me when he comes to bed and I move to the sofa. I really should have brought my PC with me, as I had long bouts of sleeplessness last night and could have used the distraction.
Meanwhile, today was a good day. After writing some postcards, Biggie and I checked out the market this morning (yay, I needed souvenirs – also pink lemonade) and then headed to Neil and Al’s for a fantastic barbecue with Phil and his partner as well as Richard and his family, followed by some gaming. We played Maskenball Venezia which would work very well as an ice-breaker at a function even with non-gamers, Biggie played Kakerlakenpoker, we played Diamant with Otto and then taught Agricola (I didn’t play). Everyone enjoyed it; 5-player family game including rules explanation ran spot on 2 hours. Biggie was delighted to have some friends her own age to play with.
Tomorrow is the big surprise party for F’s dad so we’ll spend the morning getting ready for that. Party is in the afternoon, followed by gaming in the evening – we’ll leave Otto here with Auntie. The plan was to leave the Bigster here too but meeting the kids today may have scorched that idea – we shall have to see. Auntie stressed that she will definitely not be offended if she only has to babysit one niece tomorrow!
Plan for Monday: apparently the pope arrives in Sydney sometime on Monday. So there will be road closures in the city centre and there are warnings of delays at the airport. Our plan is to leave REAAAAAAAAAALLLLLY early (like around three or four hours before our flight leaves) and get the train to the airport, then check in for our flight ASAP.
My personal extension to that plan is: OMGLOUNGE! (This not yet OK’d with Fraser).