DailyAfirmation (dailyafirmation) wrote,

50th Birthday Vacation in Australia—Day 4 (MY BIRTHDAY)

I woke up at 5:30, after a wonderful, uninterrupted night's sleep. The sun was up already and reflecting off the Blue Mountains, and looking out our "Executive Valley Suite" picture window, I saw the scene I had been imagining since I made our reservations at the end of June.

Robert made us some coffee while I lounged around in the Lilianfels robe.

Under the category of things I had not pictured myself doing on my birthday, I turned on the TV, and we watched an Aussie movie video station called Max.

We saw a George Michaels and Mary J. Blige video, one which contained about 30 copies of each of them singing in what looked like a bar. Egotistical-seeming on the surface, visually it was technologically interesting.

A very cute song and video came on with an Aussie girl, who had a lovely accent while singing, and the video was about her trashing her boyfriend's apartment and slipping a laxative in his drink when he stepped away from the table.

Cyndi Lauper's True Colors came on, and Robert and I both sighed when the date of the song showed: 1986. Twenty-one years ago. "Where does the time go?" I cliched.

On a more recent note, Pink's Who knew? from 2006 came on, followed by Rehab, which I've heard dozens of time at karaoke, but had no idea who did it or what she looked like. 5 years, 7 months now with no television. Who's counting?

A "full Australian breakfast" was "free" with our room rate, and we went down to enjoy it shortly after 7AM.

Note: So as not to end up on The Blog of Unnecessary Quotation Marks web site, "full Australian breakfast" is in quotes because I'd never heard of it and I'm about to enumerate what it consisted of, and "included" is in quotes because at $550 a night for this room, I'm thinking the breakfast was actually paid for. But I digress...

Our full Aussie breakfast included a choice of anything from this unbelievable (tasting, as well as looking) breakfast bar.

On top of that (mostly) healthy stuff we got to order an entree from the menu. I had an omelet and Robert had Eggs Benedictine. (Not quite sure what the "ine" part was; I've only ever heard of Eggs Benedict, myself.)

After breakfast, we walked down to Echo Point to see "The Three Sisters" again—in the daytime, and then came back to the hotel to enjoy more of the spa area.

The Three Sisters

The Four Sisters

And beyond the sisters, there's the queens...

We took a trail back up to the hotel, where we saw trees like this one, whose trunks I really like:

Back at the Lilianfels, we walked through the lobby, where we saw these cute stuffed animals just sitting on arbitrary chairs:

We checked out at around noon, and before heading out of Katoomba back to Sydney, we stopped at the Scenic World, where we rode the Scenic Railway, did the Scenic Walkway, and then rode the Scenic Cableway back up. 

Along the Scenic Walkway, they had various educations signs telling you about what you were looking at. (You know where I'm going with this.) Fortunately, since I didn't have my red pen with me, one of my editor forefathers had already done the work:

I love how just circling the incorrect apostrophe wasn't enough, but that whomever it was felt compelled to draw that line up and put an "x" at the end of it, as if to say, "Wrong. Wrong. Wrong."

We had an uneventful drive back to Sydney, stopping at a McDonald's, where everything we expected to be was. 

I was a real bitch when we got close to the Westin in downtown Sydney, but couldn't get to it. I'm sorry I got frustrated, Robert. And, thanks for your help and patience with me.

This style of the room in this Westin hotel is ridiculously modern. Let's just say the jacuzzi tub in the room has a glass behind it which opens up into the bedroom. There is a button to push to draw a shade down in case you do want privacy in your bathroom. What a concept.

We had a stressful drive to the Marrickville Town Hall, where we met two people I know from IBM Sydney. Well, I say know, but the fact is we've been contributing to an IBM GLBT discussion forum for a long time now, but have never met in person of course. 

They had invited us to a GLBT event put on by the Pollys Club, and that's what we were meeting them for.  The evening consisted of lots of dancing to 70s and 80s music, followed by a drag show with the theme of "Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch."

Here's the six of us together. Andre and Richard are a couple and Jayne and Barbara are a couple.

For one of the numbers, which wasn't drag, they did a line dance! And one that Robert and I know!  The Boot-Scoot Boggie.  Cool!

Our guests were so kind in getting us back to a road to make it easy to get back to the center of town.  We did make it back with no trouble in terms of the directions, but once we got to the main street that would take up to the Westin, we traveled in bumper-to-bumper traffic for what would normally be a 5-minute trek, for 50 minutes.  Excruciating.
Tags: travel

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