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Brisbane City Tour by Foot
Tuesday 22nd February – Brisbane, Australia
Having spent a large part of yesterday playing cat and mouse to the weather, I had hoped for a more settled day to enable me to complete my tour of Brisbane City. I wasn’t entirely sure how much there was left to see, but if the weather was dry enough for most of the day, I could easily fit everything in.
I made a discovery this morning that left me feeling both happy and stupid at the same time. Up until now I have been taking a mini hike to get from my room to the kitchen. The journey takes me along corridors that weave left and right, even up and down, up stairs and down other stairs, outside, around the bar and up into another building, up some stairs and into the kitchen. It’s a long way to go just for something to eat, and actually completely unnecessarily as I was soon to discover. Just at the end of the corridor outside my room is a door that leads outside. I imagined this was a fire door, but upon closer inspection it was open. I looked outside and couldn’t believe my stupidity. There was the kitchen, right outside the door. So instead of walking around the building for 5 minutes, all I had to do was step outside and walk into the kitchen!
After my momentous discovery, I found my food to have some breakfast. The kitchen is the hostel’s only WiFi hotspot, and as such, at any given time in the day the kitchen is overrun with people, all sat in front of their laptops. Everybody scrambles for a little piece of table or floor, and it is almost as if I were in the minority going in for some food. I felt uneasy somehow. Nobody was speaking to one another either, and no one returned my gaze. I was in a room of robots where the only noise came from the tapping of computer keys. I think back 6 years to when I first travelled, and tried to recall how many people had laptops with them compared to nowadays. It is astonishing to think how much has changed in just a few years. It almost seems uncommon to be travelling without a laptop. I can’t judge though, as I am as guilty as the next person is.
So, I set out into the city again by foot, and attempted to see all that remained of this large city. The weather was good at this point, and I was optimistic about completing the tour. I re-visited sights from yesterday, and saw new things also. I ended up back at the Botanical Gardens in the early afternoon having seen all I wanted to see, and sat on a sheltered seat to enjoy the rest and the peaceful surroundings.
Close to me a guy was practising what looked like tight rope walking. He had suspended an elastic rope between two trees and was attempting fancy tricks whilst maintaining his balance. He looked very accomplished, but looked to be having trouble on a particular move that demanded a strong level of skill. He was dropping onto his backside on the rope, springing back up and twisting in the air before landing on his feet facing the opposite direction. Rather him than me I thought. His frustration was evident, and the small crowds that gathered soon moved on, probably in fear of having something thrown at them by the angry man.
I found a memorial site in the city, and stopped to regard the burning flame, and to think about the fallen, then set off again. Next was the Southfield Man Made Beach, but I was presented with a building site, and nothing more than a pile of rubble and dirt. Most places around Brisbane seem to be cordoned off at the present time, disallowing me any real photo opportunities. Even the Botanical Gardens had a large section fenced up to stop the public entering. I stopped to assess the situation, and concluded that I was finished with this sizeable building site, and was ready to move on. Noosa was next, and I have high hopes for that place.
The evening was spent watching movies and talking with my roommates until the early hours. Brisbane appears to be a great city, for those who like cities. I was just there at the wrong time I am sure.
Written by Daniel Stevens,
Founder of Roundtheworldtrip.org.
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