Arriving at Narita

Australia - Part 3

Postby Michael » Thu Jun 04, 2015 2:04 pm

Third and final set from Australia. After returning the van we had a few days left, and one of those included a boat tour of Sydney harbour.
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A stopover at a small island used for holding prisoners.
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Lots of boats out, it was perfect weather.
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Anna had a hard time controlling her skirt in the wind - which Alex thought was very funny.
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Robyn and her father.
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The turnaround point for the cruise was Manly; touristy but really nice. Which reminds me, going from Tokyo to Australia was a cost of living shock for us...fish and chips were 20$ for a single order, beer is 20$ for a 6 pack (versus 5$ in Tokyo), and parking, OMG, I actually backed Robyn's fathers Mercedes out of a parking lot, up a spiral ramp, when we saw parking was 83.50$ for the afternoon! We figured it must be a mistake, this was the parking lot where they change the oil and do a tune up as well. But it wasn't, but I'm glad we did keep looking as we did find parking for 20$ further down the road.
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We had just missed the boat back, so had an hour to walk around the shoreline.
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Back at Sydney Harbour, and ready to take some photos of the Opera House.
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There were people climbing along the top of bridge; those are humans up on top.
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Anna and I headed up the the Opera House buildings, which look a lot more complex up close.
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Quite impressive architecture.
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A view of the harbour as the sun set.
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Our last trip in Australia was to the Blue Mountains.
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And the Jenolan Caves. This is the entrance to the main area.
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The main cave was huge.
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This looks like a closeup, but that is Alex in red for scale.
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A panorama.
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The back exit from the main cave.
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And finally, the Three Sisters...
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And so after a great two weeks in Australia we headed home to Tokyo.
Michael
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All good things...

Postby Michael » Tue Jun 16, 2015 2:04 pm

Hard to believe our 6 months in Japan are coming to an end, but in two weeks we will be returning to Canada. We have been told (and are realizing) that the culture shock when returning is often greater than when you come to Japan. This is home now; Robyn speaks Japanese very well, I drive on the left side of the road and the kids even sing the song from Frozen in Japanese. I'm also realizing this blog will come to an end; but not after another few rounds of pictures. We've done a lot in our last month here, and I will make a few more posts. I've also been thinking of consolidating this all into a better format, and adding in more of the photos and movies as I process them over the next few months. I did a quick check; I've taken over 10,000 photos while here! So lots more to come.

So since returning from Australia there are the following things still to post:

- a trip to Sensō-ji Temple to see the Sanja Matsuri festival
- a ride out at night to photograph Tokyo Harbor, Tokyo Tower and the Rainbow Bridge.
- climbing Fuji-san! Yes we finally got to see Mt. Fuji, and the experience was as impressive as we hoped.
- an overnight stay on the Izu Peninsula
- visiting Hakone, where we took the kids on a "Pirate" ship
- a photo trip to Mt. Tsukuba
- hiking Mt. Mitake and seeing the Rock Garden there
- another quest to Akihabara to find a "unique" gift, and then to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building for a spectacular view of Tokyo at night.
- a high speed tour of Tokyo and Mt. Takae, with our long time friend from Montreal who stopped by for a visit.
- last on the current list was an epic 11 hour ride out to the most eastern part of central Japan, the Pacific coast in Chiba.

I better get to work on them!
Michael
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Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Dec 10, 2013 10:43 pm

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