Exhausted from the late night on the town after the Opera, we slept in and relaxed in our cabin until noon. We had planned to take the HoHo bus in the morning, but resting seemed far more inviting and it was good to recharge our batteries.
Refreshed, we headed off the ship and summoned an UBER to take us to Bondi Beach. Another pretty day was in store as we drove thru the Sydney streets, taking about 30 minutes to get to Bondi Beach. The beach was absolutely stunning. Having spent my adult life in and around beach towns, having lived in Hawaii, Florida and California, I have seen hundreds of beaches and Bondi is very close to the top. The sand is the perfect color and contrasts nicely with the blue water and white surf. Sitting below the main street, the beach has a beautiful crescent shape that is quite stunning, especially from the vantage point of an observation deck at the beach’s south end.
Perfect temperatures, comfortable humidity and a gentle breeze completed the package as we walked from the south end to the north and enjoyed a wonderful day in a wonderful spot. We had about an hour and ½ to walk and do a little shopping. Near the center of the beach is the Bondi Pavilion which has a few shops, restaurants, restrooms and free Wi-Fi, which was surprisingly fast for a free hotspot.
It was now 3:15 pm and we wanted to go back to the Rocks to visit the Ken Done Gallery before heading back to the ship. Another UBER and another 30 minutes and we were getting out of our car in front of the gallery. Judy has been a fan of Ken Done’s work since she bought a shirt with one of his designs in the early 80’s. Many of his pieces are about the beach or feature the Sydney Harbor Bridge and the Opera House. www.kendone.com
We wanted to get back to the ship by 4:15 pm giving us a buffer before the all aboard at 5pm and the ship’s departure 6pm. While Judy was shopping I found a mailbox to mail some post cards back to friends and family in the USA.
Our final UBER for Sydney arrived within a few minutes and we pulled up to the White Bay Cruise Terminal in about 20 minutes.
The all aboard time in the On Location guide was listed as 5:30 pm but the sign by the gangway said 5pm. This is why we always take a picture of the sign when leaving the ship as the sign will always have the most accurate information.
About 150 guests joined the ship here and they had their lifeboat drill at 5:15pm. They divided the new arrivals into two groups, with everyone who had an even lifeboat muster on one side, while the folks with odd lifeboats mustered on the opposite side. I went down to see the new arrivals and say hi to any familiar faces from our cruise critic roll call. I did notice that Orlando Ashford, HALs CEO, and his family were participating in the drill and paying close attention. They will be here thru Cairns, Australia.
Since this was the start of a new segment, they held a special sailaway at the Seaview pool with complimentary beer, wine and soft drinks. The weather remained spectacular and the views incredible as we made our way out of the harbor. As we passed under the Sydney Harbor Bridge, we returned the wild waves and cheers from a group of bridge climbers waiting at the top of the bridge. The sailaway party continued as we passed by the Opera House, Watsons bay and the other familiar sights we have come to know in our brief time in Sydney.
Orlando Ashford, HAL CEO, making the rounds
Before we had left the Harbor, we coasted to a stop and the Captain announced that we had to evacuate a person with a medical emergency. They lowered the tender platform and the person was picked up by a small boat and they were on their way ashore – not sure what the nature of the problem was – but we will probably find out later.
At this evening’s dinner, three people at our table ordered the Prime rib and the portion sizes were HUGE. I suspect that since we were on late seating they realized they were going to have plenty left over and started to get more generous with the size of the cuts.
The entertainment tonight was the latest Bond movie – Spectre. Anticipating a huge turnout they scheduled the showing in the Queens lounge, but both shows were lightly attended and probably could have fit in the Wajang Theatre which has a better screen and can get darker than the Queens lounge making it the preferable venue for movie watching.This entry was posted in Uncategorized