Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

Oct 30 2001

I Slept the Good Sleep last night, a full 10 hours…

I Slept the Good Sleep last night, a full 10 hours or more. The first thing I saw when I opened my eyes was the view of the harbour. After chatting with Jimmy and Rick for a few hours before they left for school and work respectively, I decided that I wanted to walk down to Double Pay -I mean Double Bay.

First things first, however. I went to a backpacker travel place where an alarmingly confused girl managed, after several unsuccessfull attempts, to book me a ticket to Perth (I’m flying this time; I think I’ve had enough continent-spanning train trips to last me for a while). Then I went to the mall across the street and found a Donut King. Yes, I finally found real donuts in Australia. They are no match for Dunkin Donuts, or even Krispy Kremes, but at least the folks at Donut King can spell (I do realize that it was spelled doughnut by people like Sir Walter Raleigh) and can even make a recognizable version of my favorite Terribly Unhealthy Food-type Material: Strawberry Frosted Cake Donuts.

Having thus satiated my donut craving, I went to the K-mart in the basement of the mall to look for a swimsuit, but all I could find were those skimpy speedo-type suits. This is probably because most Australians are so fit, just about everyone looks good in those things. I understand that there’s even a nude beach not far from here. The Happy Monkey, however, is not comfortable being Happy in a speedo, and hopefully this hemisphere will not have to be subjected to that unholy sight unless absolutely necessary. Start praying, folks.

After giving up on that search, I began to make my way downhill towards the water. The houses along the way were for the most part old and well-kempt. I passed through one large park area which, a nearby sign proclaimed, was going to be returned to its original bush state. The flies were out again as well. I realize that flies are not that big a problem, especially as other countries have problems like earthquakes, typhoons and god-awful TV shows like Everybody Loves Raymond, but the buzzing-around-my-head thing is really starting to get to me. I have to stifle every urge to yawn. I have to remember not to breathe through my mouth (yes, I am a mouth breather, I admit it), lest some little bit o’ hell with wings decides to take advantage of the openings in my defenses.

The Double Bay area is really posh. Bentleys and Porsches are sprinkled liberally through the parking lots. People in this city love their Mazda Miatas as well, it seems, and I can’t blame them. The weather is perfect for convertibles, or would be if it weren’t for the flies. I made my way down to the water and sat on the stone wall there. I took out a Cherry Ripe I had purchased at the mall because Jeb has sung its praises so often in the past, but to my dismay found it contained coconut, which is to me all texture and no taste, so I couldn’t finish it. The Taiwanese in me wanted to throw it into the water, but thankfully I stifled that impulse and stuffed the remainder of the bar back in my pack.

The bay was full of gently bobbing yachts, and people walked their dogs in the park. On my way back up to the apartment I passed an old guy sitting in the doorway of an expensive boutique looking somewhat less that thrilled at his wife’s prolonged shopping rampage unfolding within. I walked back through the nice neighborhoods, even being shocked when a couple of people actually greeted me, and then up the hill, where the neighborhood got worse as I closed in on backpacker areas. The more dodgy the neighborhood, the more I tend to adopt a sort of bogan swagger. Don’t know why that is; maybe I just do it when I’m nervous. Or maybe it was the donut.

Sydney is a city full of really healthy-looking people, bright, sharp sunlight, graffiti, flies, mazda miatas and blond girls that all look surprisingly alike. Either that or I’m being stalked. According to Jeb, Keanu Reeves and the Gang are in town filming Matrix II: Reloaded (sounded better than “Refreshed” or “404: Page Not Found” I guess). If I’m lucky I’ll run into one of the sexiest member of the cast: Tank (Apoc was sexy too, but since he died in the first film I doubt he’ll be involved in the second one).

Tomorrow Jimmy and I are going to go either to Chinatown or Manley Beach, since he doesn’t have class on Wednesdays. Either way it should be interesting. I will try to avoid that annoying urge to speak Chinese really loudly when I see some Chinese people, since I know how stupid it seems when Chinese people do that in Taiwan, trying to show that they know English and speaking it really loudly whenever they see a foreigner. I understand the urge to show off, but I also believe that some urges are better repressed, and that is one of them. I’m content that I know how to speak Chinese; I shouldn’t feel the need to demonstrate to everyone in the immediate vicinity. Perhaps one needs to be on the receiving end of such behaviour to realize how annoying it really is.

posted by Poagao at 12:41 pm  

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