On an Iconic Building.Sydney Vivid Festival 2016.
We took a Vivid Cruise which was an excellent way to get a feel of the size and scale of the festival and to see the city lights from the harbour.
The focus is around Circular Quay with one side of the Opera House illuminated and one side of the Harbour Bridge. But there are numerous locations of light installations around the city.
It was intriguing to actually cruise underneath the Harbour Bridge.
This year is the 200th anniversary for the Botanical Gardens so they are participating in Vivid. This arch of lights was just one of the attractions there. The crowd sauntered through the arch, six people across, taking photos as we went. Also in the gardens, there were light effects on trees and grass.
Various buildings were flood lit with moving images. Some art installations were interactive, reacting to movement, or linked to music. We spent two evenings in the city and still didn’t experience everything.
All the while, Sydney Ferries continued their regular dance across the harbour, joined by multiple cruise and private boats.
Sydney Opera House is an impressive building at the best of times, but during the city’s Vivid Festival, it is awesome with the light show projected onto it’s sails.
Here are just a few of my photos.
B is for … Bridge
… in my second post for the Blogging A to Z Challenge.
Let’s start in London, with the iconic Tower Bridge.
This is the Wobbly Bridge, also in London. It’s official name is the Millennium Bridge, a pedestrian suspension bridge across the River Thames. When it opened, it swayed far too much and closed for months for modifications and stability.
This is a bridge that is intended to sway.
Amsterdam has many bridges over it’s canals, but this “Skinny Bridge” – Magere Brug – is a beautiful historic swing bridge.
On this side of the world, Sydney Harbour Bridge is another world famous image.
Tasmania has Australia’s oldest stone bridge, in Richmond. It was built by convict labour in 1823 and still carries traffic.
Another convict built bridge in Tassie is Spiky Bridge. It was built in 1843, using stones from the fields, without any mortar or cement. Stones on the parapet are laid vertically, hence it’s name. It is suggested that the vertical stones were to prevent cattle falling over the sides of the bridge. Others claim that the convicts placed them vertically in some minor rebellion against their supervisor.
On this day back in 1985 I was packing and preparing to explore Australia, after spending two months working as a nanny in Sydney.
My first job had been in Enfield, one of the western suburbs. I looked after two year old Gemma while her parents were at work, as they interviewed for a new permanent nanny.The dad was a freelance photographer, originally from the UK. The mum worked in advertising in the city. They were both very relaxed. I had a nice big room in their old style house that was partly renovated. This job made a change from my sole charge roles in NZ. Here I had company in the evenings if I wanted and was only responsible for Gemma during the day. It was interested talking to the parents and getting their view on employing a live in nanny.
I had weekends off to do more sightseeing. I learned more of the history of Sydney with a visit to the Hyde Park Barracks, built to house six hundred convicts, now a museum. Rooms were set out with hammocks, clothing, rations of how the first convicts lived. There were exhibitions on transportation and early Sydney.
The family invited me on a day trip to the Blue Mountains, stopping at Leura and Katoomba for stunning views across the valleys and landscape beyond the mountains.
Gemma was an easy, cute little girl and the weeks passed quickly on this job. I was caught in the middle of trying to potty train though. I didn’t have use of a car either. Even so, it was the best job I had with the parents around.
The next jobs was three weeks looking after two children, Georgia aged three years and Christopher aged fifteen months. I was granny sitting on this job too. The Grandma was eighty years old, quite spritely, born in Estonia.
The house was lovely, in Centennial Park. All open plan, bar area, billiard table, swimming pool, steam sauna and gym, two Mercedes in the garage that I had keys to. The parents were travelling in Europe and going on The Orient Express.
I drove the Mercedes 450 SEL. It was a big car but I soon got used to it and enjoyed driving it, sometimes going the long way round rather than just to shops and school gates.
We walked in the park most days, fed the ducks. Sometimes it was difficult with the Grandma, with the kids playing the adults off against each other. The grandparents had come to Australia as refugees after the Second World War. The only real drama during that job was during a couple of days of torrential rain, worrying if the swimming pool would overflow.
I had a few days between jobs and was able to stay with friends of friends again. I did more sightseeing in the city and took a tour of the Opera House, learning about the building and concert hall and theatre inside. I enjoyed days at the beach and relaxed, appreciating my own company.
I did a day trip to Palm Beach, commenting about the beaches we drove through, Deewhy, Collaroy, Narrabeen. All places that were local neighbourhood to Aussie Mate at the time, and now the area where our daughter lives. I also mentioned Newport, where we stayed on our Silver wedding anniversary two years ago. Small world.
Palm Beach is beautiful, sitting at the end of a long peninsular, with ocean on one side and inland waterway, Pittwater on the other. It is the location of “Summer Bay” in the tv show “Home and Away” but that didn’t start until later in the 1980’s.
My final nanny job was with two children in Lavender Bay. Dannielle was four and Garrard eight months old. The parents went to Japan for a week and again I had grandparents nearby. They were a Jewish family so I learnt a bit about their culture and food. We had a fun day at Taronga Zoo as they were season ticket holders.
My nanny jobs in Sydney were as varied as those in NZ and a good way to earn money to cover my travels. It certainly made a change from working in a bank
On this day back in 1985, I’d been in Sydney for a few days. I’d swapped one harbour city for another.
We flew in to Syndey from the north. My first view from the plane was of gorgeous golden beaches, turquoise shapes among the rooftops, swimming pools in so many gardens. The whole city built around so much water.
When we landed, the stewardesses walked down each aisle, spraying something into the air. I’d forgotten that aspect of entering Australia in the 1980’s.
I took a taxi to where I was staying in Cremorne on the north shore. The city centre was high rise, with nice old buildings amongst the new. After the space of NZ, Sydney felt like a big big city. The Opera House seemed tiny though compared to the Harbour Bridge.
I spent days out sightseeing, travelling on the ferries across the harbour to Circular Quay. The Opera House looks big from sea level.
I travelled on double decker trains, a novelty to me. I went to the top of Sydney Tower, which was the tallest building in the southern hemisphere at that time. It gave a stunning three hundred and sixty degree of the city.
I explored “The Rocks” and Pier One, old wharfs and warehouses renovated into craft shops, galleries and cafes. I walked around the Opera House and the Botanical Gardens. I went to Bondi Beach and admired art at the gallery on the Domain.
I took the hydrofoil over to Manly and commented on the ocean beach there. It’s interesting reading these first impressions of Sydney, now that I am familiar with the city, especially Manly and the Northern Beaches.
I made friends with some local people and had company my own age to hang out with, live music in pubs, days out at the Royal National Park to the south of the city. Lunches in China Town, mornings wandering around Paddy’s Markets. I spent time with a certain Sydney bus driver, but that is a whole different story that’s not going on this blog.
I loved Sydney and wanted to stay a while, so registered with a nanny agency and again got work very easily. I earned $39 a day and as I had no living expenses whilst working, it was a good way to earn and save towards my travels.
This week’s photo challenge is … enveloped.
Here are some images that came to mind of things wrapped up, covered or surrounded.
Rose petals protecting the centre of each flower.
Trees lining the road.
My part of the world enveloped in pre-dawn light.
An old building in Sydney surrounded by modern architecture.
When our “Tower of London Poppy” was delivered, it was safely enveloped in this cardboard packaging.
Back in the day, airmail letters folded in on themselves to envelope the news written inside.
Whilst in Sydney, we had a family lunch at the Q station. Now a restaurant and hotel in the old quarantine station on Sydney’s North Head.
Britain had been sending convicts to North America but in 1783 the newly formed United States refused to accept any more. So Britain decided to establish a new penal colony in New South Wales, land claimed for Britain by James Cook on his first voyage in 1770.
The First Fleet sailed in between the Heads of Port Jackson on 26th January 1788, as their original destination of Botany Bay was unsuitable. Port Jackson offered deep waters and sheltered coves, such as Sydney cove, where the first settlement was established.
From the 1830’s until 1984, passengers that arrived in Sydney on migrant ships with suspected contagious diseases on board where placed in quarantine. The site at North Head was ideal for the quarantine station as it was the first safe anchorage point inside the heads, it was a safe distance from the centre of Sydney and sufficiently isolated, and it had a local water supply from natural springs.
A history of the ships quarantined here are engraved on the cliff walls. The hospital buildings, the boiler house and the wharf still remain today as testament to the success of protecting Sydney from influenza, tuberculosis and other disease. The station accommodation at the time was split into first class, second class and third class. Generally, people were held here for forty days before begin released to settle into Australia.
Our lunch meal was delicious with a fascinating slice of history thrown in and a sunset view of Sydney city skyline and harbour from North Head.