Just some stuff I want to share with you

Posts tagged Australia

A walk in the park

It’s been a great day today. Although we had some light rain in the morning, the afternoon weather was fantastic. I walked along the river towards the Botanic Gardens. In this area you will find the Queensland University of Technology and therefore when walking through the park you will find a lot of students relaxing or studying here. The birds in the pictures are all over town. I have no idea what their name is, so if you do: leave a comment….


Close to the Botanic Gardens there’s a footbridge (the Goodwill Bridge) to cross the Brisbane River. This brings you to the South Bank Parklands. The first 2 pictures show the Parklands, the next 2 are the City side (where my hotel and the shopping area is).


The Parklands has it’s own “beach“. Now the sun is shinning, students from the universities located in the Parklands (University of Queensland and the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University) hang out here or come for a swim. And then there’s of course the great view on the City side again. If you zoom in on the last picture, you can see the 2 towers (the big ones on the left) they are building “in front of my hotel room”…


On the South Bank you will also find the Queensland Performing Arts Centre, the Queensland Art Gallery and the Queensland Museum. I haven’t visited them. The weather is to nice to go inside; perhaps later. Crossing the river via Victoria Bridge brings you back to the shopping area on the City side of the river. The first picture shows my hotel and the construction sites. The others give an overview of the South Bank.


It’s been a nice day out here. I must get some sun block tomorrow, since my head is turning red…

Thursday 12 March 2009

Relaxing in Brisbane

Watching the news last night explained the showers and wind in Brisbane: cyclone “Hamish”. The cyclone is losing its strength but for the next few days we will keep the rain and wind. Luckily it’s not raining constantly, so I started my day with a nice walk along the river. But then it got darker and darker and that’s not what should happen at 9:00 in the morning. So after taking a few pictures of the high buildings in the center of town, I started to search for some shelter.


And just in time, I found that this city has a nice shopping area with loads of shops and surprisingly big malls. Well, I had to buy a mobile phone and have a look at shops that sell Tom Toms (I want to buy the cheapest one available for the driving part of my holiday) so strolling through these streets was good fun.

It was interesting to see how many people were on the street and not only to do shopping. Starbucks and the other coffee corners/cafes (there are so many of them as well) are constantly used for business meetings. Underneath the shopping malls, there is also a bus stop so this also explains the constant movement of people in this area. This constant movement makes it a very lively scene.

After a relaxing day strolling through town, I got back to my hotel to find an email from CASA: my flying license and security card have been sent to the flying club in Toowoomba. Yihaa!!!! This was the last step required in a long administrative process in order to have some real fun: flying in Australia. But more on that later. For now I need to add the contacts to my new phone and plan for the next days.

Wednesday 11 March 2009

The eagle has landed

The rain in Singapore has had a lot of effects. As you can read from my previous post, it is not pleasant to go outside. But if the sun does not show, the temperature drops to a nice 20 – 25 degrees level.

Another interesting thing (and this is a worldwide effect): you will get traffic jams. And that’s not what you want to end up in when you are trying to get to your plane. Well I did… This nice 4 lane road from Singapore to the airport was packed, because of 2 stupid accidents (nobody got hurt, just a lot of bumps and scratches on the cars). I got to the checkin-desk just in time, but the pilots didn’t…. So there we were all waiting for our “drivers”. Delay: 45 minutes. But they were not the only pilots stuck in traffic, so several flights had severe delays because of these 2 small incidents.

We took off with a delay of just over 1 hour. The first 2 hours we had all sorts of bad weather in the area, so the plane had to make several detours/route changes to stay away from the lightning. And we saw loads of flashes all around. Nice to look at, especially when you know you’re not even close to these bad boys. The captain tried to make up for the loss of time due to the traffic jam, but he couldn’t. So after a 7 hour flight, we arrived just over 1 hour later than planned in Brisbane.

But who cares? Well, not me! I am “on the island” of “no worries mate”.

First impressions of Brisbane: the temperature is good (25 degrees), it’s very cloudy and windy and they expect rain for the next few days. We travelled from the airport to my hotel, which is in the center of town, in the timeframe that everybody goes to work. So I expected a lot of traffic. But it wasn’t there.

The hotel is not very inspiring. When I look outside (I am on the 14th floor) I see…


The room itself is big and clean, so it will do for the next few days.

I have done my homework: informed CASA that I am now in Australia (So get my flying license organized and give me my security card. A bit more on the frustration related to that in a future post.), I have browsed through the stack of hotel vouchers that were waiting for me when I arrived here and my blog is up to date again. Time to unpack my suitcase, take a short nap (my internal clock is totally messed up now…) and then explore the neighborhood.

Tuesday 10 March 2009