DAY 4: PLAINS, TRAINS & AUTOMOBILES…AND BUSES AND MORE TRAINS AND SOME MORE BUSES AND A COUPLE MORE TRAINS.

8 Jun


Today was our first day “off”. There was nothing on the schedule, which provided a great chance to figure out how to get to Macquarie University – where I will be working. It was a great idea…in theory. I had no idea what I was doing and spent a lot of time wandering around and looking like a tourist. What’d I learn? I do not have enough patience for public transportation. The trip that I thought would take one or two hours took 5 or 6 hours.

I headed out at 9 a.m. for Central Station. This is the central hub for almost all off the trains that run out of Sydney. However, they were doing track work and the station was closed to all non-interstate trains.

Plan B: I head to Wynward Train Station to catch a train to Chatswood to get a bus to Macquarie. Simple enough. So I hopped on a bus and made it to Wynward. Hopped on a train and made it to Chatswood. Asked an Aussie where to get a bus to Macquarie and they laughed. They said that I needed to get on a train and take it in. This was good news except for the fact that I had just gotten off the train I needed to be on.

Plan C: I waited for about 25 minutes for the next train and finally made it to Macquarie. One problem, I wasn’t technically allowed to be there. Oh the technicalities. My transportation pass is for Zone 1 and this station laid in Zone 2. When I went to swipe out, the gate didn’t open. I might or might not have had to jump over the gate. Deal with it Sydney, no need to come after this poor college student. I wondered around campus for a good 45 minutes trying to find my workplace and finally found it. It was closed. Perfect. I decided to go ahead and just make my way back to Waterloo. Easier said than done.

Plan D: I tried getting back into Zone 1 via bus but that didn’t work because I accidentally got on the bus out of town instead of in to town. I ended up riding the same bus for about half an hour out and half an hour back. I was back to where I had originally started.

Plan E: I was now in Zone 2, back at Macquarie, couldn’t get back in to the train station and this time there was a security guard at the gates – probably my own fault. What’s that they say about Karma? I had to cough up the $3.20 to get back into Zone 1 via train and switched several trains and busses but eventually made it back.

I was extremely frustrated and upset that I had wasted most of my free day “navigating” Sydney. However, there was still a glimmer of hope. My roommate Jeramey and I decided to try to go to the Jazz Fest. If you’ve read my previous blogs, you know we were 0 for 2 Friday and Saturday night due to rain. Tonight was a success! If we were playing baseball, we’d be all-stars. Either way, it was awesome and I’m extremely glad we decided to try it one more night. We had a great time. A string duo opened and they were incredible. There is nothing better than sitting in Darling Harbour and listening to Jazz Music. The coolest part was the stage. It was actually set up in the harbor. The stage moved with the water and created an atmosphere like nothing I had ever seen. It was beautiful.

The main act was the winner of Australian Idol. He sang everything from worship songs to Jay-Z and Beyonce. He was truly a musician. It was fun to listen to and even funner (yeah, I know that’s wrong but you know what, it’s my blog. I do what I want) to experience the atmosphere. I have included some videos. His name is Stan Walker. Enjoy!

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