Oz, Day 4: Watery Wildlife

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June 17, 2010 by 8junebugs

Tuesday was a bit on the ugly side, weather-wise. Undaunted, we headed out to the indoor aquarium and…well, Wildlife World, which is sort of an indoor/outdoor zoo.We took the monorail, but we needn’t have — it was cute, but we soon found we could walk almost anywhere we needed to be.

Meet Rex, the 15-foot croc at Wildlife World

Rex snapped at us. No joke. Well, he snapped more in the direction of a small child just ahead of us on the path, but we jumped, too. Wouldn’t you?

The rest of Rex

Graham tickling Rex's belly!

We wanted to see koalas, and see them we did! Meet Charlie, the alpha of the little Wildlife World pack:

"I am Charlie, master of all I survey."

"I may look cuddly, but I rule with an iron paw."

"You doubt my authority?"

"Watch how I repress a minion."

(I missed the actual leap. I KNOW! And he did it TWICE!)

"That's right! Bow down AND give me your branch, minion!"

This is a lot more activity than we expected out of these little guys, whose only occupations are eating leaves and sleeping. Their inefficient bodies only produce enough energy from the leaves to…find more leaves. So we got quite a show, we thought.

The ‘roo pen was also open to the elements, and they weren’t happy about it.

The 'roos -- all boys. Obviously.

"It's not you. We don't care about you. We're here for the shelter."

"Hey, lady, can I borrow a towel?"

Both attractions were indoors and super dark, which made navigating interesting. I didn’t take any photos at the aquarium, mainly because, hey! Fish? Not really my thing. They were pretty and we did enjoy walking under the tank of dugongs (like manatees) and sharks, but…fish, y’all.

After looking at lots of creatures in captivity (also not really my thing, but you work with what you’ve got), we took the monorail to Chinatown for a late lunch.

My friend Cat had told me that Chinese food (well, all food) in Sydney would be different, and by different, she meant much, much better. We dined at the Noodle King, and after a couple of bites, we were ready to swear fealty — he was, truly, king of the noodles. I had pork dumplings that were so good I ALMOST ATE ALL 20 OF THEM, even though each was the size of my head. I think we brought six home.

We hoofed it back to the hotel with our leftovers, having learned from our map that we’d be total wusses to get back on the monorail. (Also, there were very clear No Food Or Drink signs, and Graham prefers to follow rules to the letter.) Besides, 14 DUMPLINGS. In my belly. A walk would do us good.

Late that afternoon, we learned that a friend of Graham’s from his drum corps years had just passed away after battling cancer…in his 30s. We did room service for dinner (eventually), rented Avatar (which I slept though), and tried to figure out whether there was any way to make the memorial service on the day we got back to/passed through San Francisco.

There wasn’t.

(Next up, some iconic siteseeing and an afternoon and evening of feasting with friends…including shrimp. On the barbie. No kidding.)

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