Sydney Mardi Gras

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BY EDOUARD L GARCIA

Docked at Sydney Cove*

Sailing into Sydney Harbour at 4:30 a.m. is one thrilling sight with its glittering bridge looking like a rainbow in the dark of night, the shadows of the Sydney Opera House lurking like a ghost ship with its hoisted sails.

We were booked at the Pullman Sydney Hyde Park with a 17th floor room and a picture window overlooking the landmark Hyde Park. I chose this hotel because it was right at the starting point of the Gay Mardi Gras Parade and knowing the rowdy crowds attending these events, it was easy to watch from the confines of the secured hotel sidewalk and more convenient to go back to our room and watch the parade on TV rather than paying $150 for a grandstand seat to wait for it to finish in 4 hours! I saw the preparations for the grand parade starting from early dawn till the last of the revelers straggled back home at 6 a.m. while I rushed to a nearby convenience store for a sandwich and some milk because all the restaurants were fully booked that day and Pål refused to go out in the crowd in fear of the incoming onslaught of Covid-19.

Well, I could say that I have attended Pride events from Norway’s Top of the World to Australia’s Down Under and I enjoyed every one of them. Sydney earned more than $30M for this year’s Mardi Gras! And that’s for 3 days of events ONLY!

If one would ask me my opinion on Sydney, it would be my next destination AGAIN and I wouldn’t mind living there for a while. Besides the cleanliness and the friendly people, there’s the wonderful choice of all kinds of food – especially the best Chinese restaurants serving the freshest and largest seafood on earth! There were clams bigger than trays, the variety of fishes and crabs looking like monsters. Foodies will adore the inventive fusion restos that abound in every nook and cranny with exotic fruits and flowers adding novelty to each dish.

There’s Bondi Beach where the bodies and faces are the world’s best and the sand is super clean and the temperature is ideal. Life is safe and everyone speaks English! You can walk all over Sydney although public transport is readily available. The Royal Botanical Gardens was a marvel, and jet boat in Sydney Harbour was my fun treat. If only my life would be a jet boat ride forever!

My prayer: Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more…And he who sat upon the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new”. Also he said, “Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true” Revelation 21:1,5,RSV*

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