How was your Saturday?
Sydney, Saturday 24th March, 2012.
Weather : Fine with completely blue sky.
Occasion : Will’s Birthday trip to Sydney
10:00 am : Traditional Saturday breakfast
Sausage Roll and Coke – at Patisserie in the Rocks.
Bonus: The enormous ‘Rapture of the Sea’ docked at the Overseas Passenger Terminal.
10:40 am : Express ‘Discovery Climb’ to summit of Harbour Bridge
Our climb took the ‘Discovery Route’, as opposed to the ‘Bridge Climb’ route. The Bridge Climb is the traditional route up the higher ‘outer’ arc of the bridge. The Discovery Climbs wends its way through the structure of the bridge and climbs up the inner arc. Both end up at the same place on the summit.
The express climb takes 2hrs 20 minutes instead of the usual 3hrs 30 minutes. Most of the extra time in the longer climb is spent mucking around getting dressed in the special gear, having lectures about safety, and learning to use a special climb ‘simulator’ to get used to the harness. In the Express Climb, there are extra staff to help your team get in the gear and then you are straight out on the bridge.
I’ve now done both climbs. I think that the Discovery Climb and the Bridge Climb are both great, and wouldn’t be disappointed if one was available and not the other. I prefer the efficiency of the Express Climb.
Bridge Climb runs in all weather conditions – so tickets are not refundable. Bad luck if it is a wet,windy and miserable day with no visibility. We tried our luck without a booking on a sunny Saturday and the next available climb was in one hour.
Shelley our guide was great. Bridge Climb runs like a well-oiled machine. It should – more than 3 million people have made the climb since it began operations in 1996.
Bonus: Australian Swim Team making the climb at the same time as us.
Double Bonus: Sky writer making the message ‘Marry me, Jen?’ directly above our heads.
Triple Bonus: A few minutes later, he was able to write “She Said………..Yes’
Shelley said that there have been 4000 proposals at the summit of the bridge – with only four knock backs. There is also a platform at the top (‘The Sun Deck’) on which you can get married.
13:00 Forbes Hotel
$10 Angus Rump steak and chips – with schooner of beer / coke.
Bonus: James Squire Sundance Lager on tap.
Double Bonus: The Greek Yum Cha (!?) looked interesting – for future reference
Triple Bonus: The Forbes Hotel must have been there for a hundred years, and that appears to be when the inside last got a coat of paint.
14:30 Sydney Football Stadium SuperRugby
Waratahs vs Sharks.
Bonus: Waratahs play their first entertaining game of the season and pull off a try in the closing minutes to win the match.
Double Bonus: Despite only having General Admission tickets, sitting directly behind the Waratah’s team. (apologies to John and Andrew Coorey for stealing their seats)
Triple Bonus: Catching up with H’butt Negus and B’head Phillips and their boys. The Engine Room of the St John’s College Men’s Four 1994 haven’t had a beer together for a long time. Where is Theo?
18:30 Kebab (with Hot Chilli Sauce)
at Sydney Olympic Park, Homebush.
19:00 Greater Western Sydney’s first ever AFL game.
(@Sydney Olympic Stadium vs Sydney Swans)
Swans won by 61 points
Bonus: The Giants won the last quarter
Double Bonus: A Four and Twenty Pie with tomato sauce balanced on the knee at half time.
Triple Bonus: Train x 2 and Bus Home to Gran’s with no missed connections.
Now for Sunday……..