everydaysparks

Stuff I see, which you might not.

View from the Bridge

Yesterday was a beautiful sunny day in Sydney and I was meeting my great friend ELW and one of her (very lovely) sons in Darlinghurst, one of Sydney’s inner city suburbs where the cool crowd crosses paths with the homeless crowd & ladies-of-the-night crowd. We were having breakfast so, in true Camino training style, I thought I would walk from my home on the north side to make the most of the beautiful day. And get in an 8.5km walk before breakfast.

Here are some pics from my walk across the Harbour Bridge. The view is pretty spectacular and I committed to walking that way more often to check out our pretty city. If you’ve not done it before (or not for a while), I really recommend that you do.

Our House

Our House

Our House, as seen through the Harbour Bridge fencing

Our House, as seen through the Harbour Bridge fencing

Looking up

Looking up

It looks like a cage, but I promise it doesn't really feel like it

It looks like a cage, but I promise it doesn’t really feel like it

Looking out to the Heads

Looking out to the Heads

And there's (part of) the city

And there’s (part of) the city

It reminds me of the Dr Seuss book…DID I EVER TELL YOU HOW LUCKY YOU ARE?

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Thankful Thursday – love ya, Sydney

Last night I went to the opera with my mum (Falstaff; very good) and we spent some of the twilight hours of a perfect Sydney evening sitting in front of the Opera House watching the world go by. If you’ve never done it, I highly recommend that you do. It made me think of that Dr Seuss book DID I EVER TELL YOU HOW LUCKY YOU ARE? Yesterday, we told ourselves again and again.

That sky isn't fake. Neither are those birds or the people. Or those giant shells.

That sky isn’t fake. Neither are those birds or the people. Or those giant shells. Sorry ’bout the glare.

The ship was getting ready to leave as it blocked the setting sun. What a way to start a cruising holiday!

The ship was getting ready to leave as it blocked the setting sun. What a start to a cruising holiday!

It's still a very weird looking building, but I love it.

It is a very weird looking building, but I love it.

Ahhh...

Functional (mostly) and pretty to look at…

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The ukuleles are in town

So, last night I went to see the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain at the Opera House. Oh yes I did. My friend Jane bought tickets and invited me to go along and it sounded just weird enough to be my cup of tea, so away we went. Before the show, we were at Opera Bar and noticed lots of people (ok, by ‘lots’, I clearly don’t mean thousands, let’s say at least 37) carrying little ukelele-shaped cases. At first, I was surprised that the orchestra members would be out drinking so close to showtime, then realised that these must actually just be random people carrying ukuleles. The ukulele carriers covered some pretty broad demographics – men and women, young and old, two eyes and four eyes. I know it sounds dumb, but I had never really thought of ukuleles as instruments before last night. More of a cute-looking joke present to give a niece or a friend who secretly wanted to be Slash, but lacked any musical ability.

Anyways, we got to the concert hall and it appeared that the gig was sold out, or pretty close to it. On our right was a fancy looking pair of seniors, who told us that they had brought their daughter and their grandson (with his ukulele). And their Indian parish priest from Maroubra (with his ukulele), who seemingly loves music and turns every church service into a singalong. On several occasions of audience participation, said priest thrust his ukulele high in the air, like some sort of salute to the gods. Rock on, Father. On our left was another fancy looking pair of not-quite-as-seniors from the north shore. Jan was learning the ukulele after completing some classes for beginners at an evening college and had recently enjoyed a ukulele jam session with a group in Sydney’s inner west. Even my friend Jane advised that she had taken ukulele lessons. I like to think I’m pretty down with current trends and I definitely love music, so I feel like I have missed something here. WHEN DID THE UKULELE GET SO POPULAR? AND WHY DID NO ONE TELL ME?

Whatever, the concert was fun, with everything from Beethoven to Lady Gaga to a Playschool-esque singalong version of the Sex Pistols’ Anarchy in the UK. The highlights for me were the emotional rendition of Wheatus’ Teenage Dirtbag and the upbeat, jazzy take on Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights. As we left, I was happy, but still not sure what to make of this new (to me, at least) ukulele world. However, I am nothing if not easily inspired, so thought I’d get home and google ukulele instructors in my neighbourhood and start taking classes. Then I ran into a group of youngish ukulele carriers near the taxis and my immediate reaction was: WEIRDOS. And that was the end of that.

PS, if you want to visit ukulele world without paying for a ticket, you can check out the Orchestra on You Tube.

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