niina.amniisia » bits, pieces and photos from sydney, australia and elsewhere

two weeks in 11 months (Thursday June 14th, 2001 - 00:00)

category: mmhuh?

For the first few days in Sydney I felt like a foreigner. People in shops were so polite, chatting away at me but I kept expecting them to talk to me in a foreign language, or for my own words to come out garbled leaving them with blank looks.

I found my way around town as always but each corner looked different. New shops and cafes everywhere. It’s as though I’d memorised a map in my head but I’d never actually set foot here before : my eyes were wide. To walk a block I had to peer in every shop I went past trying to memorise what was in each, take ownership of this city again.

Sun shine and blue skies during the first week : I felt like I’d not seen colours before. Reds were brighter, blues were more moody, greens shouted nature, yellows and oranges radiated. For some reason, London in reflection seemed so dark and monochrome, though with a non-jetlagged head I now know that’s not true.

Within half an hour of being in the city I saw a guy walk past who I’d seen around clubs since I was 15. Sitting at town hall steps for an hour, watching the world pass, a girl stopped to chat who I’ve known for about 5 years. In Chatswood mall the same old man plays a banjo-esque instrument. On George St, infront of the cinemas, another old man still sells those bracelets – talking a little less now, walking around with the lengths of string clutched in his hand. Seated at a cafe with my mother, a girl from year 9 (I spent about 5 months at that school) served us and she looked at me with what seemed mild recognition but I didn’t quite know how to ask.

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