A friend of mine who is in Tokyo at the moment took this photo at the airport. Some interesting things must be going on in these toilets.
It was my cousin’s engagement party on the weekend. The happy couple celebrated at Golden Century, in Chinatown. I’ve never been there before but from the quality of the 10 dish banquet I can say that it’s a good place to go if you want good Cantonese food. The pipis were very good, and so were the lamb and the scallops.
“What did you do on the weekend?” asked a colleague this morning.
“Well, I went bushwalking on Saturday…”
Yes, I knew it was going to be wet, but for some reason I’m a sucker for walking in the rain. After all, I did a whole week of it in Tassie and after that experience I thought I could handle a few hours in wet shoes.
Saturday morning, I was up bright and early to meet up with members of the Bankstown Bushwalking Club, a nice bunch of folks they are, to tackle the clifftops of the Grose Valley, deep in the Blue Mountains. No blue haze on that day, but there was plenty of mist.
The weather actually wasn’t that bad – I had more trouble with the miles and miles of stairs (well, it is the Blue Mountains after all). 3 hours later I was thoroughly soaked, but surprisingly contented, because despite the inclement weather, the valley was still beautiful.
I only found this place yesterday, but it’s on my list of favourites already. Not ‘found’ exactly, since I’ve known about The Basin for ages, but I have never managed to rustle up a trip there until yesterday.
As with most natural still water swimming spots, access isn’t easy. To get to there one has to drive all the way to Palm Beach (that’s as far away from my place as you can possibly get in Sydney) where a 20 minute ferry ride across Pittwater into Kuringai-Chase National Park awaits. But the effort is worth it, because The Basin has to be one of the prettiest places in all of Sydney.
Now, I’ve always thought that Wattamolla was lovely, but this place is even more lovely and 10 times the size. Surrounded by bush, the lagoon is blue-green and goes for a mile or more. Because of its sheer inaccessibility (the only other way to get there is by foot via a 6km track), I don’t think it would ever get full. It is so pristine and calm and beautiful that I liken it to an Aussie version of The Blue Lagoon. Only without Brooke Shields.
Since the weather’s still damn hot with no sign of letting off, I’ve taken to exploring Sydney’s natural still water swimming spots. After Wattamolla, another favourite of mine is Karloo Pool. Karloo is a secret and cherished spot to people of the Shire and avid bushwalkers. It’s reached by walking 45 minutes into the valley from Heathcote Station to where Kangaroo Creek makes a lovely, deep, freshwater pool. It sure was a welcome sight on this year’s visit in 30C heat and humidity. The water was cool and refreshing and there were some rock platforms on which to sit and take lunch. Apart from other visitors, there were no other signs of civilisation though we’re only a mere 2-3 kms from the edge of Sydney. The uphill return trip was rather interesting in the heat, but the discomfort was worth it.