In our hip inner-west suburb, Marrickville, there’s a big shopping mall called Marrickville Metro. While it’s very nice to be able to walk back forth to do grocery shopping and all that, there’s one thing that is less great about having so close. Namely the problem with people leaving their shopping trolleys everywhere besides where they should be. Walking through Enmore Park which is situated between us and the Metro you almost always find trolleys nicely lined up on the paved path. And if not there, then anywhere else in the area.
The container from France long at last arrived in Sydney last weekend. We still have to wait a couple of more weeks until it reaches its final destination. We’re both itching to have our stuff back and to sleep in our bed again. It’s been since the end of February back on the farm when we did it last. Munson, however, couldn’t care less about a bed to sleep on. He’s happy to sleep wherever, as long as he can keep us under supervision.
In other news, I finally got a full time job this week. My new job is at a kitchen retail store called Victoria’s Basement. In the past I have only searched for jobs online but this time I walked into the store and simply asked if they were hiring while handing them my resume. I was called in the next day for an interview and a couple of hours after they rang again to let me know that I had gotten the vacant slot. I have no past experience in retail but with some training I think I’ll do just fine. It sure as hell going to feel good to have a secure income again.
Just in time for the Eurovision finale last weekend we took our rented car and headed out of Sydney and up north to visit friends. Before I got there I new that it would be somewhat remote but I didn’t expect it to be totally off the radar. It took some time for the brain to process but while there, it was no biggie. I tried to get a good photo of the house but it proved to be more difficult than expected since it was surrounded by lots and lots of vegetation. See for yourselves.
The absolute highpoint of the visit was when our hosts took us for a walk in the nearby forest on Saturday. Big parts of the area used to be under water and therefore, wherever you looked you found fossils. While me and Mike turned every other stone, Munson was enjoying himself running around and feeling as free and happy as a dog can be. He eventually found a pond which he half drenched to quench his thirst.
The vegetation of the forest was a new experience for me as it totally differs from what we have in Sweden. There were thousands of different Gumtrees, Wild Passionfruit and Mahoganytrees, but the one that really caught my eye was the Grasstree which starts from being a little shrub to grow to a 4 meter tall tree. The fully grown to the right was expected to be over 70 years old.
I don’t remember how or exactly when I started to listen to The Gaslight Anthem. But I instantly fell in love with their second album, “The ‘59 sound”, and since then they have released two more albums which I’ve played many times. So when last year when we still lived at the farm in France I saw that the band was scheduled to play in Sydney it didn’t take many seconds for me to log onto the net and book two tickets. They’ve been playing in Sweden a couple of times but I have never been able to see them and I thought it was about time that I brought Mike to a concert and not the other way around.
The concert was at Enmore Theatre which is a 15 min walk from the house, we passed it the same day during the afternoon and we could clearly hear the band doing the last practice/sound check before the show. The doors opened at 19:00 and the supporting act entered the stage about a half an hour later. When he was done we waited about 20 min until the stage went dark and out stepped the main act. Besides the excitement of seeing my favourite band play live, the first thing that came to my mind was how damn loud it was. Let’s just say that if I didn’t know most of the songs already I would have a hard time trying to figure out what the hell Brian Fallon sang. I quickly exchanged looks with Mike and we decided to move further back for our ears sake. The loudness was a damn shame because I really like Brian’s voice. The set was 22 songs long and the only bad thing I can say about that is that they didn’t play enough songs from their third album “American Slang” which happens to be my favourite album. All in all, I was satisfied with the concert, after we moved further away from the stage the sound wasn’t unbearable loud anymore and It’s not every day that you get to see your favourite band play.
On a sidenote, as we entered the venue I quickly spotted their touring guitarist, Ian Perkins, who in 2011 formed “The Horrible Crowes” together with the singer and released one of the best albums that year titled “Elsie”.
Here’s a iPhone photo of us.
Since I last wrote two major events have happened. Firstly, after we’ve been couch surfing since we got here we’ve finally moved into the house in Marrickville. I had seen a couple of photos of it from the time when Mike didn’t live in France and Munson was only a little puppy but clearly not enough. If you look at the house from the street really plays a number on you since the house is much more longer than what you think at first sight. I know it would be smaller place than the house on the farm but I think there will be plenty of space for two guys and a big dog. One thing that I really like about the house is that the ceiling in the house are very high with beautiful decoration. The kitchen and the laundry room, which leads out to the backyard does not have the same high ceilings since it was built as an extension over 20 years ago. The house needs to be fixed up a little bit, but it’s a very cute house. Since our furniture haven’t arrived yet the house is very empty. We’ve made lots of trips to warehouses and malls to get the essentials. The guy we last stayed with was nice enough to lend us a mattress and we was able to take over an old washer machine from one of Mike’s friends.
Secondly, everyone’s favourite fluffy Malamute was finally released from quarantine. Ever since we picked him up he hasn’t left us unsupervised, he’s even neglected the meaty bone we gave him as soon as we came home yesterday. It’s truly wonderful to have him back with us and I’m certain he feels the same way. He’s been to the dog park twice already and according to Mike he was beyond bliss this afternoon when the two of them went there, while I was busy playing football with the Sydney Rangers FC. It was only casual but they wanted me to play in competition, something I would love to do if a membership wouldn’t have cost nearly 400 dollars.
These two pictures down below were taken last week when we visited Mike’s uncle and his wife in Dee Why which is a fancy neighbourhood in north Sydney. On our way there we stopped at one of the few dog beaches in Sydney. But since Munson was (and still is) in quarantine there was not much to do until I noticed the tiny crabs occupying the rocky sands. I remember myself as a very good crab fisher when I was young and I was pleased to find out that those certain skills haven’t forsaken me. These crabs were very fast and tended to run and hide in the tiny holes they had dug in the sand.
Mike’s uncle, Llyn, took us for a walk around the Long Reef Golf Course which is situated on a peninsula not far from Dee Why. As we arrived to the beach I asked Mike why the water was in a reddish colour close to the shore and he simply answered that the sharks must have killed a couple of surfers recently. I chose to ignore that answer and let the conversation slip.
Since I’ve been ranting about how how I didn’t like the Australian beer very much Jean, my ex neighbour in France, suggested that I would review a Australian beer every now and then. She also suggested a beer that she liked, Tooheys Old, which I decided to do my first review on.
The beer came in a 0,75 L bottle, 4,4%, just more than enough to get me through a standard meal. As I’m a big fan of dark beer I had good hopes for this one and it didn’t let me down. It’s not the kind of dark beer where you feel that you’re done and can move on to another sort, such as Guinness, but one you can have a few of in the same evening. To explain further, it wasn’t a creamy kind of beer. I don’t remember the exact price I’m guessing around 4-5 dollars for a bottle which isn’t that bad considering the amount of liquid you get. I will probably buy this beer again but there are many other beers to try!
Since I last wrote we’ve been visiting Munson who had to celebrate his 5th birthday in quarantine but he was happy as ever and enjoyed the chewy rawhide we brought him.
After we had left Munson we went and had lunch at Bread & Circuses and it felt as if we had died and gone to hipster heaven. My overall impression of the cafes and restaurants we’ve been at so far is that they are trying to set up some sort of organic, gluten & fat free image.
Anyways, after the lunch I bought a pair of boots for work before we headed to Ikea to purchase some new kitchen ware since our container has been delayed for another 5-6 weeks. While we’ll need more than just kitchen ware for an empty house at least we’ll be able to eat. Before exiting I convinced Mike to buy two bottles of Swedish Påskmust. I’m not sure how to explain it to people who’ve never tried it but all you need to know is that it’s delicious. And yes, ít’s very festive.
Fish swimming in the pavement at Woolloomooloo bay.
Our friend Ben and his girlfriend Leah swung by Sydney for a few days and we decided to take them for a spin around across Sydney. The weather gods wasn’t on our side that day but experiencing a desolated Bondi beach with crashing waves was pretty cool.
At last, I snapped this while we were standing on the bridge crossing Parsley Bay, which is quite a secluded small beach. We had a swim in the rain here during our first week in Sydney.
When Mike let the world, a.k.a facebook, know that we had arrived in Sydney a friend of mine was sitting at his Campus in Vancouver when he read the news. And he quickly let me know that he’d be arriving in Sydney in a couple of weeks to see his sister and to spend some time out in the sun, something that is considered a luxury where he had been for the past 4 months. So when I met up with him yesterday around lunchtime we immediately took the bus out to Bondi Beach. By the time we arrived we both felt in the mood for lunch so we went into the nearest cafe/restaurant. After skimming through the menu I ordered the kangaroo burger while Daniel settled for something less exotic, namely a chorizo burger. I was excited to see how kangaroo would taste but sadly I didn’t find the taste much different from regular hamburger meat. However, Mike later pointed out that kangaroo meat does best when cooked as steak and not minced. The servings you get here are quite large so the hamburger and fries filled us both up until the evening.
I celebrated my 25th birthday a couple of days ago and let Mike take me to his favourite indian restaurant. Served with rice, I had beef curry, mango chicken and some sort of chick pea stove while Mike had butter chicken along with palak paneer which contains of spinach and cheese.
In other news, I woke up to the sound of my phone ringing and a woman’s voice letting me know that I had got a job. It’s located a 10 min walk from our house in Marrickville. My main tasks will be packing and unloading and I’m starting tomorrow.
I’ve posted two food related pictures already so I thought I’d break the pattern and show a picture of Sceolaun (Ske-lawn) which is the ten months old Malamute puppy we’re living with at the moment.