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Sydneyharbour‘Giù di Sotto’… is my attempt at ‘Down Under’ in Italiano. As some of you know, or figured out from my Instagram posts, I was in Australia for a few weeks. 8 days in Brisbane for a work-related course and conference, then a week of vacation. A week isn’t long, so I had to plan wisely. When I visited Australia in 1988, sailing in the Whitsundays was my most memorable place, so I decided to spend 5 days there and 2 days in Sydney before flying home. This is the first of 2 blog posts with a few scatti (shots) to highlight my quick but fabulous trip.

The Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary in Brisbane is the oldest and largest in Australia.  Koalas are molto cute.  I cuddled a koala named Cat right after she woke up from her nap and she smelled like eucalyptus. Koalas sleep 18-20 hours a day!  Their diet is only eucalyptus leaves, so their bodies have adapted to this very low energy diet.  So much for the theory that you can lose weight by eating very little!Koaladiptych

I also fed free-roaming canguri (kangaroos) while trying to keep an aggressive emu and Australian Bush Turkey from stealing my bag of kangaroo food.Canguro

aggressiveemuI met up with Lyn and  Zoë, 2 virtual friends/fellow bloggers in Brisbane, which was molto cool. Lyn and I went to Redcliffe, where the Bee Gees are from.  The beach was nice, and we saw Australian gabbiani (seagulls).  They are so tiny!Redcliffegabbiani

One night while walking along Brisbane’s South Bank, I noticed people holding paper lanterns and I knew I should investigate.  I bought a lantern and joined the crowd.  It was the ‘Light the Night’ 3Km walk for leukemia, held all over Australia.Brisbanelightthenight

My last day and a half was in Sydney and I actually had to wear a jacket at night!   Sydney is a really large, spread out city of 4.8 million.  About 23 million people live in Australia, so that is 20% of the whole population! I spent a lot of time on ferries, which is a great way to see the city if you don’t have a lot of time.Sydneyoperahouse

I took the ferry to Manly and met a friend.  Jelena and I had a wonderful day at the beach, walking and watching surfers ride the waves.Manlybicicletta

ManlysurfOn the ferry back to Sydney, the harbour was filled with sailboats.  SydneysailboatsChe peccato l’Australia è troppo lontano!  What a pity Australia is so far away!  I didn’t meet a single grumpy person the whole time I was there!  Hopefully it won’t be another 27 years before we meet again!  Check out some seriously beautiful Queensland scatti in ‘The Whitsundays~Giù di Sotto Part 2’.  Ciao, Cristina