Saturday, January 7, 2023

Happy Summer!

While the clown cars were crashing around Congressional Halls in my home country,  I was happily visiting my friends Margie and Paul in Sydney, Australia. We lunched with one friend on Thursday, went to the play Amadeus at the Sydney Opera House on Friday (powerful!!) and on Saturday, had an indoor “picnic” with local Orff folks generously greeting me and reuniting, most all of whom I had worked with sometime between 1994 and 2018. Late afternoon, the sun began to peek out and the promised “Down Under” summer announced its imminent appearance. 


On Sunday morning, the sky was blue and the air warmer, but no time to enjoy it. Into the car to Sydney airport, into the airport to the plane, out of the plane into Adelaide Airport and out of the airport and there she was! Summer in all her 90 plus degree glory! The traveler’s blood began to flow, first delighting in some of the differences that keeps things fresh and interesting. Like my host  Michael meeting me at the gate!(Like the 60’s!)


Then out to the hotel and the surprise that it was across the street from the beach. On the ride there, Michael quizzed me about Australian slang— what’s a thong, how you say yes or no, what you get at a Bottlemart and much more. I failed miserably. He then let me know that no one uses money in Australia (I had encountered this in Sweden)— just credit cards or phones or a special ring! (I am definitely too old for this modern world!). That no one tips. (Yes! I love it!) That if you wanted to be especially generous, an acceptable tip would be taking the person out for a beer. (Sounds good.)


He then told me about problems the area had had— like inclement weather ruining crops so that a head of lettuce was some $10 U.S. That they were expecting a potato, tomato and cherry shortage. That everything was much more expensive in the last couple of years (like in San Francisco and many places). 


Once at the hotel, we toured the room where the workshops were to be held and this was the view out the window of one of them. Things are looking good! Out of my blue jeans and jacket for the first time in 5 days and into my bathing suit (“swimmers” or “cossies” in Australian), out to the water.


Happy summer!

PS On the one-minute walk to the beach, stumbled into a Greek Festival with stunning musicians and great dancers. Stopped and listened with Estevao, my friend from Brazil, who will come to dinner tonight with my friend Jasmine from China. And on the plane, sat next to an Orff teacher who recognized me and in talking, found out she's half Chinese and half Russian. Where am I again?

PSS The water temperature was perfect!

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