Saturday 29th November
Well dear reader I am sure that by now you must be truly fed up with me bleating on about my adventures down under, particularly as it is now summer here and very much winter back home. That said we have had more than our fair share of rain and some spectacular storms.
Arriving back in Sydney very late Tuesday night I was then into three straight work days before getting the opportunity to relax. It has certainly been very busy at work, with plenty to keep me amused, but so good to be back. Everyone has been so welcoming. In fact, as I walked into the office Emma greeted me with a big smile and “welcome back, here’s your phone and laptop. Your car will be here after lunch.”
On my first Saturday back I went into Sydney to do a little shopping and sight seeing. Clearly Christmas had arrived as there were trees and decorations everywhere. I have never experienced a summer Christmas before and it certainly feels strange to hear people talking about summer, 30 degree temperatures, decorations and Christmas trees!
The best tree I have seen so far has to be the one made of Lego, just outside the Westfield shopping center on George Street.
Although good to be back, the heat was a bit of a struggle so back to the hotel air conditioning for me.
Sunday 30th November
With energy in short supply, after a lazy morning, I jumped in the car. With no real idea where I was heading I decided to go to the Macquarie Shopping Centre for a few bits I needed from Woolworths and then I headed north away from the city. After about half an hour of just taking what ever road I thought looked best I saw a sign for Wisemans Ferry. Now I am still not too sure why the name rung a bell for me, but no matter, it did so I followed the sign.
What a good decision if I do say so myself. For the next couple of hours, I generally don’t take too much notice of time at the weekends, I meandered through open country, woodland and valleys. At one point I stopped to have a look at Mill Creek Bridge, apparently an historic site, as well as the views up and down the river. Generally the weather hadn’t been great all day switching between sunshine and huge downpours, but at this point it was over cast but dry, however the storms were very nearby as you could hear the thunder rumbling around the valley and then the lightning would fork from the clouds and strike the ground way off in the distance. The storms here in New South Wales can certainly be spectacular!
Finally arriving at Wisemans Ferry I was not disappointed, there really was a ferry and better still it was free! As I waited for the boat I checked out a sign showing a map of the river. It appeared that there were a number of free ferries across the river which ran 24 hours a day as there were no bridges available as an alternative.
The ferry crosses the Hawkesbury River which I had been following for some time along the valley floor. On leaving the small town you have to take a very steep road which from the views back across the valley are truly magnificent even with the weather as it was.
On the way back towards Sydney I decided to take what I thought would be a short cut via Berowra Waters. Not only did it take some of the time off the journey it also provided some even more spectacular views and driving.
It is a steep drop down into the Berowra Creek to a small area which seemed to just about find enough space between the rocks and the water for a car park, restaurant, marina and, of course, another ferry! As you drive off the other side the road is narrow and even steeper; in consequence the views back even more spectacular.
A couple of lucky choices certainly made for a great drive. A route to be revisited should time, and perhaps better weather, allow.