I put up photos from the Adelaide part of the trip finally (March Madness distracted me for a few days). But first, the scores after all the first round games:
- Lew, Yut: 28
- CT(!), misa: 27
- Kitty, Steve, Yuhk: 25
- me, YB: 24
- Seth: 19
- Jimyo: 16
Lew is totally benefiting from beginner’s luck! Yut and misa are the previous winners and they’re both in the running for the top spot AGAIN. CT’s new tactic is really working out for her cos she’s tied with misa. Then a bunch of us in the middle. Then Seth! 2nd to last! But on the other hand, he was the only one that picked Bucknell over Kansas last year. (Yes I am still going on about how Kansas let me down last year.) And Jimyo is last cos he <hearts> underdogs. A lot.
Okay, that’s all the updates for today. Now back to talking ’bout Adelaide. My subject changes are so facile and graceful, aren’t they? B-)
We did a lot, different things everyday, in Adelaide. Come to think of it, I think most of the time my timestamps on the photos are off cos I didn’t necessarily remember to change the date/time on my camera. Oh well. On Friday, which was pretty hot (in the mid 30s Celcius, which is like 90+°F), we went to the beach at Glenelg. The nice thing about Adelaide is that even when it’s hot, at least it’s not humid. More like SoCal weather, less like Florida weather. We took the tram from Victoria Square in the middle of the city basically directly to the beach. Got some fish and chips for lunch, then hung out at the beach all day. The water at Glenelg was calm and clear, really nice relaxing time.
On Saturday we went to the Barossa Valley for wine tasting. I’m not really an expert on wines, but between the four of us, we got seven bottles!
This is the Kaesler Vineyard tasting room. I think they’re famous for their Old Bastard Shiraz, which they were out of (I think). We tried their Bogan Shiraz, but my favorite was the Stonehorse GSM (Grenache Shiraz Mourvèdre) which was lighter and easier to drink (to me). We also went to Chateau Barossa (CT and I got flavored grape liqueurs), Rockford, and Charles Melton, all worthwhile. Most wineries seem to close between 4 and 5pm, but I think all the ones we went to closed at 5pm.
Then Sunday we went to see the last day of the Clipsal 500 road race, which is the start of the V8 Supercar Championship series (sort of like a NASCAR season or whatever). Obviously I’m no expert in cars or races, but still, it was cool. They closed off one of the city parks and a bunch of the roads around it, there were tons of people — it was like a festival or something, and the cars are faster and noisier and the race is more exciting than on tv by far. There were a lot of races going on that day, so after we wandered around and got lunch, we took a nap under a tree between part of the track and a giant screen they’d set up. Then when the main race started it was easy to watch the race on the big screen, or go stand by the track. It was our first time at a car race, it’s really different with the sounds of the cars and actually seeing them go by (vs. just flipping past the channel on tv).
Afterwards there was a huge outdoor concert with lot of different bands (unfortunately the first bunch of acts were all stuff we didn’t care for), and then fireworks.
Monday was one of the best days in Australia for us. We took the bus to Cleland Wildlife Park in the Adelaide Hills (public transportation in Adelaide is pretty awesome) to see all sorts of Australian animals, and pet some of them. Before we got there, we were really looking forward to holding a koala, but on weekdays the park only has an afternoon session at around 2:30 (on Sunday I think there’s an 11am session too). The last bus leaves at 2:45pm or something, so there wouldn’t have been enough time. We figured we go to the regular koala petting session and then if CT, me, or Yut really wanted to hold him (Yut’s brother had already done the holding the koala deal before), we’d take a taxi (expensive) or otherwise figure something out. In the end though, after we’d all petted the koala and stuff, we decided that we didn’t care about actually holding him; getting our pictures taken with him and petting him was good enough. Koalas are actually completely uninterested in anything but eucalyptus and their fur is pretty rough. Speaking of completely uninterested, emus aren’t too friendly either. Really big and cool looking, but tended to ignore people. All the animals were really cool, but I think we had the most fun with the kangaroos and wallabies (they look like smaller plumper kangaroos).
We bought pellets from the park to feed the various animals, especially the kangaroos, but they’re pretty spoiled by visitors everyday, so some of them weren’t too interested. They’d lift their heads and eat if you walked over to them, but otherwise…
Yut was feeding this big kangaroo when it decided it wanted the rest of the pellets, bag and all, and just took it. Makes me laugh every time! :)) Kangaroo 1, Yut 0!
We saw a couple of wallaby fights.
I think one of the wallabies (a male) would go scratch and massage another wallaby’s back (a female), then a third (the alpha male!) would come fight and scratch (not the same kind of scratching) and chase the back scratcher away. And we played with the friendliest mother and baby wallabies ever.
Sooo cute! Cleland was totally awesome.
I think that was the last activity in Adelaide. Oh in Adelaide and the Cairns area, they had great Iced Coffees (espresso, milk, and gelato), which we got practically everyday. And we ate a lot on Rundle Street, which was just full of eateries, restaurants, cafes, and bars. We stayed with Yut’s brother most of the time in Adelaide, but since he’s in a 1 bedroom 1 bath apartment, we figured we shouldn’t stay with him the whole time (although he was really nice about it). We stayed a night in Hotel 208 by Constellation which we didn’t like, so if you are gonna be in Adelaide and you have a choice of hotels, don’t pick 208 unless it’s been a while since I wrote this and you hear it’s been recently renovated or something.
Okay, that was waaaaay long!