Sunday, September 8, 2013

Saturday seventh September Sydney

There was not a cloud in the sky on election day in Sydney. We could feel the unaccustomed warmth in the sun the minute we left the apartment and headed down Coogee Bay Road to the beach. By 10.00 am the weekend crowds were already building.

We thought it was a great day to do the coast walk to Bondi Beach - enjoying the bays, the beaches and the spectacular views of this most beautiful coastline with its constantly changing foreground of emerald and sapphire ocean swells, crashing waves and white sandy beaches.

Gordons Bay looked as beautiful as I've ever seen it today.

We could tell it was Spring - the ubiquitous coastal pig face was flowering madly.

And these hardy yellow everlasting daisies looked right at home among the sandstone outcrops above Bronte Beach.

I took the pic below to show how the luckiest people in Sydney get to vote - at the Clovelly Beach Surf Lifesaving Club. It was not just the setting that interested me it was also that at about this point two important federal electorates: Wentworth and Kingsford Smith border each other. So there were a lot of candidates on show here - from both electorates. I was pretty sure even by this stage in the day that Malcolm Turnbull would be the chosen one for Wentworth. But I was less sure about Matt Thistlethwaite's chances in Kingsford Smith.

His advertising reflected all the values that people living in these beach side suburbs seem to admire: family man, "one of us", long term president of the surf club, long term president of PCYC, strong ties to the Catholic church, good decent Aussie bloke etc etc.

I noted with interest that Matt Thislethwaite did actually win Kingsford Smith in the end - replacing Peter Garrett (now retired) as our (Coogee) federal member.

 Tamarama Beach looked more sporty and down to earth than its usual "Glamarama" today...

Bondi Beach looked as beautiful and crowded as ever....but I decided to focus my camera on the Bondi Icebergs pool, just to be different.

We rewarded our efforts with lunch at our favourite Sabbaba on Hall Street (at the Jewish end).

We ended up staying for ages, drinking Israeli beer (Maccabee beer was the first one we tried - sweetened with date syrup) and reading the papers, with all their pre-election punditry.

By our second beer (Israeli Goldstar) we noticed we'd been joined by Lachlan Harris (sitting behind Rob's shoulder. Lachlan was Kevin Rudd's Senior Press Secretary in his first round as PM up until 2010, founding member of the of the online activists group GetUp, and CEO of swimwear brand  Budgy Smuggler. Most recently we've enjoyed his appearances on the Gruen Transfer. He's a real Bondi identity and we overheard him (accurately) predicting the way the election would go to any of the locals who stopped to chat.

Later that night as the election results rolled in with the outcome we were expecting we enjoyed a moment of excitement when a fire truck pulled up at the party house over the road from our apartment (sirens blazing). Apparently the hosts had allowed a bar-b-que in the back garden to get a little out of hand. The firies mopped it up very quickly and got a huge cheer from everyone for their efforts. The party continued!

And so Australia has a change of government (she says somewhat joylessly). No surprises there!

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