Thursday, September 30

Not Waving...Drowning.

This was a visit to the Sydney Aquarium, with my son, on the 28th of Sept, which was the Anniversary of Gom & I taking possession of our current house.
It was a hot day, the year we moved in, and it was a hot day, this year also.

We had forgotten it was School Holidays, and when we first arrived to attempt to visit the Aquarium, it was packed with excited children, in snaking long queues!
We decided to beat a hasty retreat, and have some lunch instead.

It had been about 6 years since I had visited the Casino, so we decided to walk in my case, hobble over the Bridge at Darling Harbour, to the 'other side' to see about lunching in the Casino.

Huge mistake! The shabby seedy 'joint' is being renovated. Finding entry was almost impossible. We encountered some Asian Tourists, who were also having difficulty finding how to get into the place.

Eventually we gained entry to a floor, which, it appeared had a Private Gaming Only area- so we ignored that!- as well as a Gaming Room.
We met a huge Mountain of a Man, brown of skin, huge of smile, and politeness itself. Mr Obliging and Extremely Pleasant  Brown Mountain Man, informed us that Son ~ if we wished to proceed into the Gaming Room ~ would need to check his backpack into the downstairs front desk, what desk?, what downstairs?, the only downstairs we had seen was pavement at the foot of arduous stairs!  
Stairs for me, are very difficult to negotiate.

However Mr O & E P Brown Mountain Man, gave us complicated directions on how to reach this area, and thence. how to proceed to the Restaurant area.

We proceeded ~limped, in my case~ to some lifts, where we once again encountered the bewildered Asian Tourists, who agreed with us, they did not really know where they were going either. Eventually, after trekking through what seemed miles through the cold and ugly car park, we found the lifts that would supposedly take us to the Desk Area, then we could apparently be allowed access to the Restaurant Area.

After standing politely in a stuffy small area waiting for one of the 3 lifts to arrive, we were dismayed to find a crowded lift, full of hostile faces, daring us to enter. We stepped back, only to be almost flattened by extremely rude ...shall we say, tourists, shoving us out of the way, and barging into the already full lifts.

It seems some countries are so used to this type of behaviour it was accepted! We stood, astonished, as 3 more slow lifts came and went, with behaviour quite the same as before. There seemed a never ending stream of rude, pushing, sweating ignorance, just waiting to outrush us into the already groaning lifts.

We decided lunch was not worth that, so we headed off back, to take the hideous trip back to Mr O E & P B M M, who decided to 'illegally' let us through the Gaming Room, with Son's Backpack still attached.
After threading our way through the sad, tired & disgusting looking Gaming Room, we reached Mr Blond Mountain Man, who was equally O E & P. He told us he should not let us into the Restaurant area, but seeing we were there already, he would.

After reading the Price list, and deciding we did not really want to purchase the Restaurant, or even Buy Shares in the Silverware, we beat a hasty Retreat. Mr Blond MM was quite understanding, and allowed us to retreat the way we had come- in spite of the illegality of it all.

We once again encountered Mr O E & P B M M, who cheerily bade us a goodbye, and fond wish for us to Enjoy Our Day.

The Casino seemed a very sad, shabby grubby and seedy place. I felt it an ugly blot on the lovely face of Darling Harbour. Just my impression.

After limping ever more slowly and painfully back across the Harbour, we found a place to dine, which did not include prices for Permanant Residence or Lease, or Puchase of Shares in the Business, or indeed the Silverware. It did however have seagull access, and the screams of a small girl, whose meat was stolen by a cheeky seagull, who ripped the food almost from her mouth, bore testament to the fact that it was a somewhat  'risky' place to dine.

I was rather shocked to see ashtrays on the tables, and could scarcely believe they could allow smoking in a place for dining, even though it is, 'outdoors'.

The food was very nice, which, after our fruitless trek to the Casino, was most welcome. We had worked up quite hearty appetites, with all the frustrations and tramping, and hobbling in search of sustenance.

We were glad we had waited to try to gain entry to the Aquarium. The queues were almost nil, and we did get in quite quickly. However the visit was rather disappointing for many reasons, not least being the crowdedness- rudeness again with pushing tourists, obviously used to such rude behaviour.
Many of the viewing windows of the more interesting sealife were far too small for crowds, and it was, overall, not a very pleasant experience.

The shabbiness was disappointing too. One would expect better, for our wonderful Darling Harbour, and the fact is is quite the Tourist 'attraction'.

We both agreed later, that our Local Aquarium Shop is much more pleasant, and a lot of the displays are much superior~ plus it is free, and one can spend as long as one likes studying the wonderful displays.

Overall it was a nice day away from my 'Real Life' which is increasingly sad and I am struggling to maintain some balance.

America, Don't Cross the River


Thimbleanna said...

Oh Meggie. I'm sorry to hear that things don't seem to be going well at the moment. Although I did chuckle a bit at your line that overall it was a nice day, after a description that sounded a bit less than pleasant. I hope you're feeling better soon and that your hobble will disappear.

ancient one said...

I giggled to myself through the whole post. I'm so glad you can still make us laugh, even though you are going through serious stuff yourself. Thanks Meggie!

Jennifer said...

Meggie, at least you and your son had a day together - and I hope you enjoyed your lunch when you finally ate it!

Molly said...

It does spoil things for others when people are rude and push and shove! But at least you had the pleasure of your son's company....Hope things improve for you on the home front.

Jellyhead said...

Hi Meggie. I'm really sorry to hear you are feeling down. I hope you get a big hug or a cheery phone call or a sweet compliment very soon.

Although I am not blogging much lately, I often think of you because of your kindness and humour. Take care Meggie.

XO Jelly

Pauline said...

I'm with Molly and also like Ancient One - good to have your son with you for an outing even though I had to laugh at your descriptions. Hope no matter what befalls you Meggie that you don't lose your wonderful sense of humor!

Angie said...

You always make me laugh, woman!! :D I'm so sorry, Meggie, that life seems to have you in the pits right now. I do hope you are feeling better soon. Hugs, Angie

quiltmom said...

It sounds like going to the aquarium was quite the adventure but at least you had your son to share the trials and tribulations with on the up and down journey.
I think you are one plucky lady ( Canadian translation- gutsy, determined and keep going forward attitude)
Life keeps throwing you curve balls and you find a way to throw them back with panache.
Hang in there my friend,
Wishing some laughter and good times to lighten your load,

Anonymous said...

You are quite amazing, just trooping on. I find you such an inspiration. Hugs to you x

The Sagittarian said...

Hi Meggie, our girls love visiting the Aquarium and our freinds who live in Sydney often take us to lunch at Darling Harbour in the seafood area where we chow down on fish, scallops and other yummy stuff, washing it down with a Sauvignon Blanc...ah, I wanna go to Sydney again!!

Sheila said...

Funny how the best aquarium is on your doorstep isn't it.
I rarely go to Toronto, as I don't like crowds, especially rude ones. It makes what should be fun into hard work, not to mention biting my tongue!
Good you were able to get out with your son for a break though.
Hope things settle down soon.
Thanks for the emails, keep smiling..