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Reisverslag Resting in Newcastle.
20 december 2015
Resting in Newcastle.
So last Monday I was back in Brisbane, I was glad I had added one more night here, so I would have some time to see the city. With being sick last week I had only seen Brisbane from the river when I went to see the koala’s.
Like I said I was trying to plan some things for next week, but that didn’t really work. So Tuesday morning I was up early to see if I could organize something. And I did, but just as I had finally made up my mind about where to go and for how long, my bank card still wouldn’t work!
So I went to the desk to see if I could pay for it manually, but even that didn’t work, so I really had to use the credit card again.
With all of these holidays in between you have to make decisions faster, otherwise you will not be able to book anything. Add the not working of my bank card, which really made me nervous.
Anyway, I managed to arrange a couple of days in Newcastle and I will be in Sydney for Christmas, so that’s all good.
I came to Newcastle on Wednesday. My flight wasn’t until 11am and I wanted to take the 9 o’clock train to the airport, but since I was ready earlier and I didn’t want to wait at the hostel, I took a train at 8:30am.
I did get a message saying that my flight was delayed for about 45 minutes, but evenso I would rather wait at the airport. At the train station was a guy who asked me if he was on the right platform for the train to the airport and I told him he was. Turned out that he was also going to Newcastle, how weird was that?!
We talked a little on the train, he was going to his sister in Newcastle for Christmas and then he was going to go on a ship and haul ass basically, I wonder what he was running from!
Anyway, I thought it would be harder to get rid of my suitcase now that we were leaving later, but that wasn’t the case. I could print out the sticker to put on my suitcase and then I could just put it on the what-ever-you call it and away it went!
I had some tea and I wrote something in my diary and on my tablet and around 11am I went to check the boards to see if my gate had changed. Well, it had, but also the departure time! Now it said we were not to leave until 12:30 pm….so at least another hour and half! So I just walked around a bit, went to the gate I was leaving from and read my book there.
The departure time was to change again, 13:05pm, so another half hour later! That would be about 2 hours delay total, but they told us that there was some heavy duty weather up in Sydney, they had closed the airport for a while because of it and our plane was supposed to come from that airport. It was alright, I’d rather wait for the plane, than not have it come at all!
So around 1pm everyone was finally on the plane and we went to Newcastle. I had the $5,- voucher again and got some tea and a muffin. The flight only took about an hour, but the times change because we’re going to another state. I was in Queensland going to New South Wales, where it was one hour later. So it was 3:30pm when we got to Newcastle, where I went to the bathroom first. It was another bumpy ride! Must be because these planes for domestic flights are smaller, they take a lot more wind I think.
Anyway, I also checked where I could take the bus to the city and I got my suitcase. I found the busstop easily enough, but the bus had already left and the next one wasn’t to come until 4:30pm….45 minutes later. Since it was raining and cold I went back into the terminal and got some tea.
So around 4:30pm the bus came and the driver told me I had to stay on until the last stop. I had to put my suitcase in the seat beside me, instead of having it underneath the bus, good thing it isn’t all that big!
When we got to the last stop, the driver told me how to get to the yha and he apologized for the weather. I told him it was ok, it wasn’t his fault. He asked me where I was from and when I told him, he said I should be used to rain then!!haha I suppose you can never get used to the rain anywhere!
The hostel wasn’t all that far, but I did have to go up a hill again. I have a room to myself, but there was a bunk in there, so I went to the desk to make sure no one else was going to come and stay with me. I have room number 13 and the ladies bathrooms are on the other side of the building…which is very convenient if you really have to go!!
I had signed up to go and have a cheap dinner and the trivia night with some other people from the hostel. I hadn’t done that before, but it sounded like fun. There were not that many people that had signed up, most of them had been in the hostel for a while and knew each other already.
We got a huge chicken schnitzel for $10,- and I had some pesto and tomatoes on it. At around 7 or 7:30pm the trivia night started. There were 4 rounds with 10 questions each and in between were riddles for smaller prizes. The categories were general, geography, history and entertainment. We had started out with 2 groups, but some people had already left, so we made one group instead.
There was this drunk guy from Scotland who ended up beside me at our table, really annoying, but one of the guys from the group came to my rescue by diverting his attention from me to himself….fortunately he left when the quiz started. And in the end we won!!! In equal part because of the answers I helped give I can say, we scored 25 and a half points and won the top prize of $50,-. They went and got a pitcher of beer and a pitcher of cider for that, I had some cider, but I didn’t really liked it. At around 9:30pm I went back to the hostel, to skype with my dad for a while. It was about 11pm when I went to bed!
On Thursday it took me a while to get out of bed, I have not gotten up after 8am, but then I didn’t go to bed around 11pm either while I have been in this country.
I got up got dressed and had breakfast. I was out of the hostel around 10am. I didn’t do very much that day, I just walked into a street where they had all kinds of shops and restaurants. I got some stamps to mail some postcards and then I went into one of those restaurants to have some tea. And to see about plans for New Years!
I have asked the people I’m going to meet in Melbourne if it would be alright toe meet up for New Year’s eve, since that would be the only time I would be there. And they said it would be alright! So now I will be in Melbourne on the 31st and they want to take me to a country race on the 1st of January, no idea what that is, but it would be great to see! Then I will go to Adelaide, on an Ocean Road trip ánd I can still go to Tasmania! I had kind of given up on that when I was looking at places to stay, it was all fully booked. But there are more YHA’s on that island, so now I can go after all! I love it when a plan comes together!
Still my bank card wasn’t working, so I had send another email. Then I had some beef pie and salad for lunch and I went back to the hostel to get rid of my backpack, the thing was getting heavier by the minute!
I asked for directions to the nearest supermarket and I got some groceries there. I took a nap for about an hour and I wanted to sit in the park to read and write some more, but it was really windy, even more windy than earlier that afternoon, it was kind of chilly to sit in the shade and the wind. So I ended up going back to the hostel to write and read in the livingroom.
I was there until 20 after 6, then I went up to my room to put my stuff away and I went back down to the yard for the free BBQ I had signed up for. This time there were a lot more people who had signed up! It was a pretty simple BBQ, sausages or a veggie burger on slices of white bread with ketchup on it. I had two of those and that was enough. Afterwards the guys I met the other day were playing some weird game, it was more funny for me to watch! Around 8:30pm I went inside, it was getting really cold. I changed into something warmer and sat in the livingroom writing some more.
This morning I didn’t really want to get up, but I was up early anyway, because close by they are doing construction work….and these guys start early!
So I got up, got dressed, had breakfast and I was out of the hostel around 10am. There was another street with shops and things and I took another route to get there. I went through King Street to Darby street. Which was a pretty hilly street, I had to climb up and down!
Darby street wasn’t as full of shops as they said it was, but there were plenty of places to have some tea. I went into one and got some tea and a huge apple/walnut muffin. I sat there for an hour typing away again, sending messages to my mom, who was already in bed!
Around noon I crossed the street to see what was on the other side, but also here there wasn’t a whole lot to see. There was a secondhand bookstore though! It’s entrance was on the other side and I got tempted to go in!
It was pretty cool, I have bought two books, one I was looking for already and one more to trade at the hostels…although so far I haven’t found anything interesting to trade with…
Anyway, the guy that was running the store looked like Jesus, you know the long hair, beard and I haven’t looked, but I’ll bet he was wearing sandals too! When I paid for my books, saw he had more sections in the back, it really was chuck full of books, it was great! I asked him how he had gotten so many books, he said he had been there for 30 years already, so yeah I guess that’s the way to get them!!
Then I went to the Civic Park to sit and watch the world go by for a while. But I got a bit restless about my plans for New Years, so I went to the library where I got sit quietly and work on what I had thought about.
Still my card didn’t work, really have no clue as to why that is. Anyway, I have managed to book flights from Sydney to Launceston, Tasmania and then from Launceston back to Melbourne and I’m going to spend a couple of nights in Bridport on Tasmania. So I’ve got that all taken care of!
I went to sit in the park again, I love airconditioning, but I got really cold sitting at the library! I sat there until my ass hurt, it being a wooden bench and then I went back to the hostel. I didn’t do very much that evening, I had a pizza somewhere and I tried to skype with my dad, but for some reason that didn’t work.
Saturday December 19th 2015
Again I didn’t get up very early today, must be something in the water here! This morning after breakfast I decided to walk over to the lighthouse to look back at the city. It turned out to be closed, only open on Sundays, so I couldn’t go up. I decided to walk all the way to the end of the pier. There was a small tower which provided a little shade, so I stood there to drink some water. Then out of the corner of my eye, I saw something come up and dive under in the water…dolphins, 3 of them!!!!
So I walked back to the other side to see if they were still there and they were! They were swimming around the pier to go to the open waters! Someone told me they always come back again at 5pm. This was really cool!!! They didn’t jump or anything, they only came up for air every now and then, but that’s okay, I saw them, that’s what counts!!!
Then I walked back into the city and this time there were 3 dolphins swimming into the harbor, which I thought was a bad idea, with all of the boats out and people swimming with dogs…but they didn’t get that close and they knew the boats were there. I didn’t stand there to watch them for too long, it was getting hot and I felt like I was burning already.
In the shade at the beach I ate my apple, before going up to Fort Scratchley. This fort was build around 1885 for the sole purpose of keeping Russians out, who had an eye on the coal this town was producing. But it never fired a shot until 1942 when there was a Japanese submarine, that fired at them. The fort is now dismantled, but the guns and barracks and everything is still there to see for people. They have some displays about who was there, the first and second world war. All very interesting, but I didn’t feel like reading all of it.
I was on time to watch the canon go off at 1pm. One of the volunteers told us about how it was done in the old days. On the top of the spire of the church was a ball, that would go up and come down at exactly 1pm. Now in those days there were a lot of ships in the harbor and not all of the captains could see the dropping of the ball, so they would fire this canon as well. Then they could set all of their instruments to the correct time. Now why they would do this at 1pm I didn’t quite get, but I’m sure there is a logical explanation for it! It was a pretty noisy affair! The picture I took is a little off, I guess my hand shook as the canon went off!
Then I looked around some more, got myself some ice cream and I went back to the hostel. When I left there that morning there was a little market in the park in front, so I thought I’d take a look there, but by the time I got there, they were packing up already.
Yesterday when I was walking through King Street, I saw the cathedral, this time I went up and I took a look inside. It was a pretty big cathedral too, looked pretty good. The lady at the shop had given me a sheet with explanations on it, but I hardly looked at them. I mostly go into a cathedral or church, because it’s nice and quiet.
When I was done I talked to the lady for a while, because I was the only one there at the time, wondered if it weren’t very boring. But she told me that normally there were two of them there and it was a lot busier, I guess people were busy with their Christmas shopping that day.
Which is also a funny thing, come to think of it. I heard Christmas songs like Dreaming of a white Christmas, Baby it’s cold outside….well, like hell it is!!! It is really hot here and I had just heard on the news that in Melbourne it has been about 40 degrees already for a couple of days, so that white Christmas really is never going to come!
I went to the Civic Park again, to cool off and read a little. But here was also a market and these people were also packing up already. So I found a bench in the shade in front of the library and I sat there watching all of these people being very busy! I sat there for about an hour, when I went back and got a sandwich at Subway’s for dinner.
I went back to the hostel, I was very tired and also very red!! I had gotten a major, major sunburn, even worse than last weekend! Don’t understand because I keep putting sunscreen on! Anyway, I didn’t feel like going anywhere. So I ate my sandwich and watched some tv, Polar Express….
Sunday, December 20th 2015
This morning I really didn’t want to get up, I was really tired. Plus I had decided to stay inside today. This sunburn is a good one and I don’t want it to get worse. So I took my time in getting breakfast. I read a while, I wrote a while and I did some laundry.
Tonight I want to go and see a movie called The Dressmaker, with Kate Winslet. About a woman who’s creating quite a stir when she comes back to her hometown in Australia after having had her fashion training in Paris. Seems pretty good!
21 december 2015 17:15 | Door: Doris Edwards
Hard to get my head around a hot Christmas. I talked to my neighbor from New Zealand last night about growing up there. Adventures like this are great. Savor. Love Doe
12 januari 2016 03:27 | Door: Michelle
This sounds silly, but have you bought Australian sunblock or European sunblock? If you haven't got Australian sunblock, I would recommend getting some. It is different from European sunblock and works better in Australia (I found that out when I tried UK sunblock in New Zealand and it was hopeless). If you are using Australian sunblock I'm not sure what to suggest - sorry!
I'm a bit behind with your travels but I'm enjoying reading them slowly. Hope it's still going well!
12 januari 2016 03:28 | Door: Michelle
PS. Did you enjoy The Dressmaker? I loved it!
13 januari 2016 07:56 | Door: Linda
Thanks, but yes I am useing Australian sunblock! I figured what you seggested, that the Dutch variety wouldn't work here!! I have bought the one from Banan Boat, factor 50, which was the highest factor I could find.
I guess I should just put more suunscreen on, more often, I'm usually good at it in the mornings, but then in the afternoons I forget about it!1
Thanks!! it's ok, I'm writing slowly at the moment too!!
Yes I did like the Dressmaker, loved Kate and Liam!!!