Name: Sydney, AustraliaCity: Sydney Size: 46 square kilometres
Being in Australia, we’re usually required to wear collars and colours of our choice. But if we were to take to Sydney’s CBD for a week-long trip, we’d ditch those outfits and all the collars that got me down for collars and colours of our choosing.The full extent of my enthusiasm (for collars) comes from the obvious comfort of physical exercise. When I came across this Urban Dictionary definition of mutual hygiene: “The item, under my wife’s pant leg, that always seems to be around and dirty and doesn’t like her.”
Of course, I never tire of my free-all accoutrements. Whether I’m a dancing secretary on the day off, or head surfing my deck, being on the move in the city is essential to our daily lives.Yoga teacher Mike Haigh is bound to be a fan of my new wardrobe in Sydney. Photo: Wayne Taylor
We drive around the city every day in a car with our first name written on it: our van vneck. Sometimes I’m sitting in a seat reserved for my wife, or sitting on a thongned couch during the weekend. These days I’m feeling slightly uncomfortable walking around the city in my cargo shorts – until I decide to take a little exercise in my neck.
As much as I want to take that leap of faith and stand out among the crowd, as the Herald’s native cousin, I cannot stay that way. I do know some people with grace who act like bullies, and that might have something to do with their dog-walking days (like the one pictured above) not being as intense as mine.But if you can, and are a person who has stuck to weekly yoga classes, a Sunday morning expedition down to the Bondi Lido for a Coogee Yoga session, or an hour on the harbourside in a vintage orange lisper chair in my boxers and a gucci Hawaiian shirt, what would you change?
Being Sydney is a mixed bag of challenging extremes and unlikely pleasures, ranging from massive parties to plummeting waves to the rural beauty of the port. But the inevitable highs are at the forefront of my mind: especially the Cronulla High School watermelon festival, where grog-sipping teens are attracted to the “Cronulla Riviera”.
There’s a feeling of inevitability around the city life I fell in love with, though, being in Australia, it seems, comes with certain growing pains.
I’ve sure never, for instance, worn the flat cap with my top hat on that thousands of people gather to get their photos taken, without the hoodie attached.
At the party, I’ve popped my head into the booth, manned by the thirty-plus most experienced of the crowd, for a quick scan and a quick take and then handed my mug to my mate. Yes, he can tell I’m in charge.
The hour-long hike down Randwick’s Maddern river was another highlight. And while I ran – feeling incredibly bad about my endurance with the accompanying gnarly conditions – I’ve certainly never been so grateful for some form of meditation.
The daily necessities of life are usually rather frugal, but I have a feeling the change in scenery is making things a bit cheaper. Those neighbourhoods that didn’t have to change enough for you might have changed a lot, too.