Sydney travel diary/travelogue - 2002

Thursday 7th March

Ian rides the waves at Bondi, body-board style
Ian rides the waves at Bondi, body-board style

The final day. And what a surprise - more time at the beach!

We decided to go down the road and try Bondi. Well, I'd done the body boarding bit before, but Terry, Karen and the kids had yet to try it out. Although the waves can get fairly large - 1.5 to 2 metre breakers - the kids were not phased, particularly Toby. Although he wiped out plenty of times, when he did he just got up, coughed and spluttered a bit, maybe whined for 10 seconds, but then got back on the board and splashed like crazy with his little flippers. When he did catch a wave, it was really funny, cos he could ride it all the way in to the shore, often shooting past the hardcore surfer dudes like a bullet, much to everyone else's amusement!

We spent much more time than we thought the kids would manage - they loved the big waves! But there's only so much you can take, not least because the salty water starts to make your belly very rashy after a while, as Daisy and Toby found out. So we went off to Clovelly for one last time.

Riding the waves at Bondi: montage photo of Daisy and Toby in the Bondi surf.
Montage photo of Daisy and Toby in the Bondi surf.

While we were at Clovelly, I took a walk over the headland to the next bay - Gordon's Bay. There is an underwater trail here for divers which I had not got to see, but instead I had a bit of a snorkel around. It was really noticeable how much colder it was here than Clovelly, and there were not as many fish either, so I didn't stay there long. Back to our favourite little beach for a couple more hours then.

Later we dined on ...230; fish and chips. Well, nothing fancy would do - we had to get packing! The flight at 10 o'clock meant an 8 o'clock check-in, but in the end we didn't make it until just before 9. We were the last to check in! Good thing is that we didn't have long to wait in that airport before boarding. The same couldn't be said of Kuala Lumpur - we arrived at 5am (Malaysia local time) and spent a further 5 hours waiting for the next flight. There was NOTHING to do in the airport. Then a final flight - 13 hours, how nice. It was made even more fun by the three older people behind me who insisted on grabbing the headrests in front of them (i.e. me and my row) every time they got up. VERY irritating when you are trying to sleep!

That's the problem with Australia - it's just so darn far from the UK. Any time you take off has to take in to account the travel time. You could always do a stopover, and I think on balance I'd recommend doing just that. Either that or good strong sedatives for the return flight.