I woke up yesterday morning with an urge to see something new in Sydney. I decided visiting the fish market would be worth my time, however it was too far to walk and I wasn't going to pay a cab. Some internet research indicated that a form of public transportation called "light rail" could deliver me to this location for a cheap 5 dollars, so I decide to skip lunch and get to the train station. After I made the walk down to central station and purchased my ticket, I asked the help desk where I could find the boarding area for this light rail thing. The answer I got was vague and difficult to understand through the Japanese accent, however I traced what little I could understand and ended up on the opposite side of the station at a bus stop headed for Thirroul. I didn't think light rail would be a bus, but there's been a lot of track-work lately and so buses have been filling in the gaps, I also didn't recognize the location, but that made sense because the line that stopped at the fish market also went to some place I didn't recognize. When the bus showed up 10 minutes later, I boarded with a great sense of accomplishment.

As each minute went by on the bus I became more and more suspicious of the direction we seemed to be headed. Were we taking some strange route that was city mandated, or perhaps avoiding a street which was closed due to a farmers market? While contemplating a possible alternative route that would get us to the Fish Market, a lady behind me answered the phone to what sounded like her husband. She explained to him that she had just left 15 minutes ago and that since the express bus didn't stop she would be home within an hour and a half. As this information sank into my brain like acid, my thoughts shifted from curiosity about where I was going to damage control. At this point I knew I didn't have my cell phone, that I hadn't eatin in 5 hours and that I had only about 200 dollars accessible on my banking card. What I didn't know was whether this place I was headed would be a lively town near transportation and hotels or a prison colony 50 miles from the nearest gas station.

I kept trying to erase my memory of what I heard the lady say on the phone, after all I was starving, maybe to the point of hallucination I figured. That was a much better explanation of what I'd heard then the rational one, I figured any moment the driver would pull over to the stop and prove what I'd heard wrong. After a while we were on a desolate road with no civilization in site, and desperately trying to maintain my cool I thought of all of the positive things I could think of about this situation. I was alive and very healthy, that was a good thing, I also was not in jail which is pretty awesome, and I didn't have anywhere to be that day or the next so I wasn't going to miss some important meeting or be late for work.

Eventually the bus got off the highway in a highly vegetated area and began navigating in a zig-zag pattern down a steep hill toward a pleasant ocean side community. I could feel my breathing become easier seeing this and I put aside my fears being stranded at some truck stop fighting off dingoes all night. The bus pulled up next to the local train station at 6:30pm and the driver declared that we were now in Thirroul.

hill @ Thirroul
road down to Thirroul
train station at Thiroul
Thirroul neighborhood

Looking North in Thirroul

Thirroul War Monument
World War 2 monument
I started my exploration here by wondering into the first bar I passed called Samuels. I was starving to the point that I couldn't think so I ordered the Chorizo plate right when I got in and then sat down to have a beer. The beer tasted better then any beer I'd had in a while, but at this point so would piss, I felt my attention zoning in and out on random stuff like the motorbike in the middle of the room and every once in a while I'd realize I was just staring at the stucco on wall. After 15 minutes of this I looked around and saw three other tables had been served. I approached the bartender and asked about where this Chorizo plate only to have him pass the buck and claim that the kitchen never took the order, knowing I would collapse soon without food I closed out my tab and walked across the the street in search of competent service.

Samuel's Bar

Motorbike in Samual's Bar
looking behind the bar
Samuel's on Urbanspoon

Ryans's Hotel was across the street and inside I felt confident this place would actually serve me. I ordered for the crumbed fish salad, although I was tempted for steak after seeing gigantic plates being picked up by other customers. After not eating for like 8 hours it almost didn't matter what I ate as long as the portion size was enough. After walking around in circles for about 15 minutes my buzzer rang and I picked up the food I'd been dreaming of all day. I made my way outside and found a seat in the patio dining area and as I ate I could slowly feel my senses return to my body.

Ryan's hotel
Crumbed Fish Salad

outdoor seating  at Ryan's

After my meal I had enough energy to walk down to the beach, unfortunately it was dark by the time I got there and there wasn't really anything to see. I decided that instead I'd checkout one of the places I'd seen half way between Ryan's and the beach. I walked back up the main road and went into a bar called Beaches. They were setup with a live band and it seamed to be the popular spot in town, everyone and there uncles were here to enjoy the show. I decided that here I could finally relax and waste some time, I ordered beer after beer and listened to the band play 70s cover songs while I got drunk at the slot machines.

Thirroul Beach
Beach at Thirroul
Main Street at Thirroul
main drag at Thirroul
Beaches Bar
Band at Beaches

Train at Thirroul
people drinking as they waited for the train to Sydney