So here’s an interesting fact for ya’ll.
If you go to the Lonely Planet website and look for Things to Do in Sydney, the Harbor Bridge and the Sydney Opera House are #2 and 3 respectively. Number one is the Thai restaurant Spice I Am.
So I decided I’d check it out to see if it really does deserve to be ranked higher than Sydney’s icons on the guidebook’s list. That being said, I had quite high expectations for it, and I probably didn’t get the best experience, as I grabbed takeaway Beef Pad Thai as the kitchen was closing for the evening.
But it was still delicious. Served with a lime wedge, the noodles went perfectly with a few glasses of the Sauvignon Blanc I’ve been drinking for my wine class. I didn’t have high expectations for the pairing, but I think the lime really accentuated the fruity citrus of the Sav Blanc, especially on the tip of my tongue. I guess at this point I’ll stop pretending like I know what I’m talking about and get to the point: by itself the pad thai was inferior to the legendary Nud Pob Crispy Chicken Pad Thai. But with half a bottle of Deakin Estate 2009 Sav Blanc, I think I’ll give Spice I Am the edge.
So with that little review aside, let me describe my day.
It was quite a Manly day. Yes, I went back to Manly Beach to tie up some loose ends and do some things before I leave. First on my checklist was to look for ‘Manly’ shirts for souvenirs. But I couldn’t find any that I thought were worthy so I ended up passing on the purchase.
Second on the list was to lay out on the beach. A cloud cover rolled in right as I was settling in, but I did enjoy watching the surfers and listening to Jack Johnson. Can you say ‘Bi-winning’?
Third up was a visit to 4 Pines Brewery. I tried the sample rack, which included 5 tastings which were all quite good. The Heffeweizen was good, although not my typical style. But oddly enough, I liked it more than the Pale Ale, which is the type of beer I’ve generally come to like most.
And then to wrap up my day I walked along the Manly Scenic Walkway to The Spit in Mosman. This walk, the ‘Manly Spit’ walk as I refer to it, was charted as a 10k, 4.5 hour excursion. I saw the sign at 4:40 pm, about an hour before sunset, and I chuckled. Ha! Since when has darkness ever deterred me? I figured if worst came to worst, I could always abandon my trek and catch a bus back to Sydney along the way.
I figured wrong!
While there were a few opportunities to leave the track near the beginning and the end, there was little I could do to bailout after about 3km when it started getting dark and civilization began vanishing and I found myself hiking through wilderness…alone….with a dying phone battery.
Why do I always do this to myself? My first week in Sydney I got lost in the streets alone with a dead phone at night. My first night in Melbourne I got lost in the streets alone with a dead phone at night. And now at the end of my semester it’s all come full circle, as I found myself lost in Sydney Harbor National Park alone with a dying phone at night.
The battery ended up holding up for the duration of the walk. I think my constant use of the flashlight feature is what drained the battery. One thing’s for sure though: the next time I get a cell phone upgrade I’m making sure it has a flashlight built in. It’s been surprisingly useful.
So even though I was on edge during my whole stroll to the Spit and I didn’t get to see much of the scenery on the scenic walk, I wouldn’t take back the experience at all. I actually think it was quite beautiful seeing the lights of civilization dot the horizon across the black abyss of the harbor.
I would have to say the most stunning lookout was a rocky ledge a little off the trail that looked out over the harbor to the distant Sydney skyline. I had to climb down a rock, and peered down at tree tops and endless darkness below me, but being the confidant youth I am, I proceeded slowly and surely.
The view was fabulous, and the only thing that would make that memory better would be a few beers and a few friends (in that order, jk). I’ll upload the picture I took of myself on the ledge. I really like the image, because for me it gives my whole Sydney experience some closure, just as my photos of the New York skyline gave my High School experience closure 3 years ago.
So this has been quite a long post, and if you’re still reading at this point, give yourself a pat on the back. I will be doing likewise on the other side of the planet, because that means my superior writing has kept you enthralled. :)
Keep checking in for updates. Hopefully I’ll keep you all fascinated, and you can live vicariously through me.