Australia – December **Millenium Change**

December has arrived, and much has happened as usual, main things are Hook Island and Sydney.

======== Sydney ========

Okay, this is what many of you have been waiting for… And I can tell you that I have been waiting for this as well…

I know that I have been bragging about this for a long time and I remember last New Year back home in Höganäs where I celebrated New year for my self. I remember that, when I fired my fireworks that night, I said to my self “HAPPY F**KING NEW YEAR” in a very depressed way. I also promised my self that, that time would be the last time I celebrate New Year alone and that New Year 2k should be at a very special place, in a very special way and hopefully with very special people. I also promised myself that I would start a new life when I got down to Australia.

I had heard that Sydney’s celebrations 1999 were astonishing. The thought was therefor born to celebrate it in Sydney but nothing was still decided. As you all know I started Uni. where I meet a girl named April. We became friends and after we have had the conversation about New Year, she insisted that I should come and stay with her and her family that lived right there in Sydney. I was very happy to get that offer cause I knew that finding a place to stay in Sydney during that peak week was to be considered impossible.

The 20 th of December I started my journey from Townsville to Brisbane, this journey was done by rail. The rail in Australia is really not what it is back home. The rail makes you feel that you are just about to de-rail, and the resent accidents in New South Whales and Victoria was brought to my attention. From Brissy to Sydney I took a bus and that was uncomfortable, no room for the legs and so on… But hey, the goal of reaching Sydney kept me from complaining.

Now I have had my shower and I meet April mum, and they are all very nice and friendly.

Something has happened during my stay in Australia, or maybe I should say during Hook Island. I don’t know what really but I wrote this email to April about Hook and she told me in her past email that they where going to the church on Christmas Eve. I wrote; after this week on Hook, relaxing and letting the body rest and recover from the stressful exam period. I like to come with you to church so I maybe can get some peace in my soul as well…

I did not think so much about it until now, when in the room I have been allocated is filled with quotes from the bible and I remembered Elida, a ship I was on during my conformation. I must confess that I don’t remember the text but I remember Johannes (or John as he is called in English) 3:16 or something like that. That was a verse in the bible that the ship Elida used as a motto. I am not sure about the numbers but I am just about to look it up for you. Scary, I remembered the numbers correctly…

It says;

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemn, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everybody who does evil hates the light, and will come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.

Ahh well, I don’t know what this means but so I should probably just go on telling you about Sydney, because I think that is why most of you guys are here to read about.

======== 991222 ========

First day in Sydney, I saw the opera house twice and went over the Harbour Bridge twice as well.

After chatting to April’s mum for a while she revealed that we where going out tonight at a concert with dinner, and best of all, it there treat!! I am speechless over what they have done for my already, I mean I have been in Sydney now for 4.5hours and they have offered there home. They even told me to use anything that could suit me, like telephone, email etc. etc. With the telephone they asked if I didn’t wanted to call home and say that I have arrived safely, but I told them that that was out of the question because its very expensive to call Sweden from here. Hopefully I will have time to write a couple of lines every day about how amazing this city is.

After getting home from the concert was I tired, but stunned  the dinner was really good and the music was Jazz played by people in my age that had been training for a couple of years. The whole thing was really good, though most people were dressed up as a music stars, and I could see Madonna, Cheer, The Spice girls, Kizz, The Jackson five even Harrison Ford showed up and many more… This evening was really nice and I really appreciate that April’s parents brought me along. Unfortunately April had to work so it was only April’s parents and me that went there, but I meet some of April’s friends and I felt that I would fit right in.

======== 991223 ========

After the first good night sleep – slept like a king in Faith’s bed (she’s in Hongkong so I take care of her bed while she’s there) and woke up about 9am when – I was ready to experience Sydney.

After some breakfast April and me went into the city where we took the boat over to Manly and went for a stroll down the beach and later had some lunch which was terrific. On our way in we almost hit James Cook’s ship; The Endeavour, with the ferry when we past it. Took some nice photos from the ferry over the opera house and Sydney Harbour Bridge. After returning to central City, we strolled around and witnessed a guy that swallowed a sword. After that we went window-shopping and found a very nice present to my sister which April’s mum estimated the prize to about $370. So what was it? It was an opal necklace with some other crystals.

Back home again I started to plan for tomorrow and found some nice things to do around Sydney harbour and Darling harbour. I am going to National Maritime Museum and PowerHouse that is also a kind of museum. I found also some other stuff that might be good as presents both for April, my uncle and Granddad as Xmas presents.

I hope you all have figured all the present at this time, Xmas tomorrow, and I still believe it’s summer. The temperature in Sydney at the moment is very much alike home during summer and have even the cool breeze from the ocean like we do. I reckon that I could live here with out missing Sweden so much. It got it all, the nice beaches (with everything, waves, women etc.), you have the opportunity to get a job like anywhere and a great climate.

======== 991224 ========

Xmas eve, today as I already told you I went to the Maritime museum, but skipped the Powerhouse and went in to cheek the timetable for the IMAX theatre. After that I walk around and looked for presents for both April and the family back home. I ended up buying a necklace for my self and on the way from The Rocks to the station I bumped into a street actor that I had meet the day before with April but we did not stay to watch him so I thought I might as well… The show was about half an hour long and he did a lot of different tricks like somebody from the audience wrapped him up in a ‘hug-yourself-suit’. Above that he got a 10-12 meter long chain around him self and the guy helping locked the chain with a pad lock and put the key in the middle of the stage. His job was now to escape from the chains and then from the ‘hug-yourself-suit’. After about 10 minutes he was loose!! He also swallowed a sword among other things…

When I got home I had like an half an hour to get ready for the Christmas play April and her parents was dragging me along to which was not to bad actually. After that April and me went with her friends to the Greengate hotel and had a couple of beers and then back to April’s house. There all the friends were gathered to swoop presents, I did not expect any presents but got some anyway…

======== 991225 ========

Xmas day, after a long sleep in I managed to get up and have some brekky, and after that it was time for the Bull’s present swooping and even this time I got some presents, thank you Mr. and Mrs. Bull!!!

Just when we were finished, the Christmas dinner was ready; ham, turkey, salad, potato salad etc. which was really yummy!!!

After the nice meal, April and me went home to Ruth where I got more to eat and even more presents… Thank you!!!

When we got home April and I saw the Titanic which I hadn’t seen… Pretty good movie!

======== 991226 ========

Today was the day to go to the beach! It was not that good weather but what a heck… Craig told me how to catch the waves by waiting the right one in, and by using flippers swim as fast as possible inwards so you could feel the wave push you forward and some times down into the substrate!! Heaps of fun, but little bit cold in the water though.

After that we went home and in the evening we went out to St. Patrick’s and had a few drinks and danced, the night-club was all packed unfortunately so there was no room for swinging around the dance floor…

======== 991227 ========

After a very nice night and long and pleasant sleep I went up and into the city to see the Galapagos movie on the IMAX theatre. This movie was amazing because it was 3D, meaning that you could see the movie coming out from the screen, almost like you could touch ’em. It gave me some new ideas and choices to my future education as well, which I need now before I start to make any drastic decisions about me future career and before the second year starts at Uni.

I also witnessed an artist making paintings with remarkable precision with SPRAY-CANS!!!! The paintings where $20 each so I did not buy any for that reason, but it was sure some pretty paintings!!

======== 991228 ========

Today Paul and me went down to Bobbin Heads (National park) and did some kayaking and it was really nice!!! I just wanted to stay in the creek for ages and not go back!! Some fish was jumping over the surface and you could hear the birds and the other animals on the hills surrounding the creek. The weather has not been good at all the last couple of days with some showers and thunder.

======== 991229 ========

Today April was free from work and went with me to Australian Natural History Museum,  where I meet one of my tutors from Townsville, pretty awesome to meet people you know in strange places… After the museum we went down the aisle in St. Mary’s cathedral, I decided that I would get married in a cathedral and not a ordinary church, due to the long aisle (took for sure 2 minutes to walk the whole aisle).

Now when our brains have gotten some intellectual stimulus we were on our way back home to see the movie blade…

======== 991230 ========

This was a beautiful day! The sun was shining and only some small clouds on the sky. The plan was that Ruth would pick me up around 11ish and we would go for a drive around some of the parts of Sydney that I had not experienced before, that is Kings Cross, The Gap, Rose Bay, Bondi Beach etc. The pictures will be shown in the gallery ASAP, or as soon as I have developed them. I can only tell you that it was absolutely beautiful!!! *** *** *** ***

When the time started to get closer to 4pm Ruth started to drive towards Chatswood where she works and dropped me of at the big shopping center and she went of to work and went around to look for presents. I bought some going away presents for the Bull family (some plastic cups and things to use at the barby) and some toy dolphins for April and some other toys for Ruth.

======== 1999-12-31 to 2000-01-01 ========

New Years eve!!! This is a day many people have been waiting for! To bad the weather is not as good as yesterday but it’s not raining and that’s what counts. I hope you guys back home will have just as fun as I will. Tonight’s plan follows, Going over to Ruth’s house @ 3pm and have some pre-drinks and join everybody together. At 4.15-4.30 we will take our selves down to the station and meet up with more friends and head into the city. When we get of at Milson’s point we just wander down beside the bridge and find our selves a good spot to defend against other drunk people *smile*. The first fireworks is according to tradition at 21.00 (or 9pm) and after that it’s a boat parade with all kinds of ships, everything from the ferries to the tall ships, that is ships that look like Captain Cook’s ship The Endeavour. (Gustav Wasa’s ship is the same era).

After that some other fun stuff and finally the midnight fireworks that goes from 00.00 to 00.30, half an hour!!!!

Hopefully I will bring back some good photos of the thing.

After the fireworks we will go over the bridge and head down towards either Bondi beach or Manly beach, depending on the ferries and the buses. There will we just crash and hopefully wake up to witness the new millennium’s first sun rise in the civilised world!! And don’t you guys worry, I will take some marvellous photos of the whole night!

The day after will be fairly quick though I am going to the airport around 9ish and leave Sydney @ 12 noon.

Well, write to you all in the new millennium then!

Till then, have a great New years Eve and don’t think about the hangover the next day *smile*

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