Visit Australia in 2002

from 19 to 27 October, 2002

Quite Upset but Very Happy (Yasuichi Yamagisih)
My Trip to Sydney (Miyoko Uchiyama)

Quite Upset but Very Happy

Witten and Translated into English by
Yasuichi Yamagishi

I had long wanted to have a chance to visit Australia and this time I could fortunately get it. However, I had too many things to do when I was invited to the tour to the attractive continent. I had to manage to change my schedule to make time before I finally determined to take part in the tour party. The party members---Yoko Ishizuka, Yukio Asano and Miyoko Uchiyama---waited for me for a few weeks. I appreciate their kindness.

Australia was in spring when we arrived there on September 20, and the season was quite different from Japanese spring. I found nothing of young green leaves, flowers or blossoms like cherry blossoms and warm sunshine. In Perth, where we had a-four-day stay, the temperature was so hot and the sunbeam was so strong that I felt the season rather summer than spring.

I had believed that Japanese people are rarely tender-hearted in the world, but I found in Australia that my opinion was quite wrong. Australians were more kind and familiar than Japanese. Neil, Owen, Jack and his son Peter took us in Peter's car to a lot of places in Perth.

Let me show you here how hearty the welcome barbecue party was. It was held in the garden of the Davis'. First, salmon was served. I thought it was a salmon barbecue and I ate pieces of big sticks of the fish. But the party was not a salmon barbecue. The fish sticks were just the starter for the dinner. Soon, Davis, his Italian and beautiful wife, their three children brought a large amount of beef, a lot of glasses of beer and wine, and they said, "Please more beer or wine", "How about more beef" again and again. We were quite upset but very happy.

During the party someone said, "How about going to a zigzag drive?" I couldn't understand what he/she meant, but a few minutes later we started for a drive running a zigzag way up to the mountain located behind the Davis'. At the top of the mountain we saw a wide and clear night sight of Perth. I'll let you image how it was. On the way from the mountain we fortunately got a cute welcome from kookaburras and three kid kangaroos.

Arriving at Davis' house, I thought we had to say goodbye to them, but the kind and tolerant Australians offered us another welcome party. They served us a lot of fruits and wine as well. Their service was much more than the desert. I was deeply surprised at their kindness, warm heart and tolerance at the familiar entertainment.

Anyway we were so welcomed at lunch or dinner party almost every day that we didn't need to expense for meals during our stay in this country. Leaving Perth we went to Sydney and stayed at Rod's house. It was another unique and interesting experience in Australia, but I don't mention about it here, because I think other person of our tour party members will describe it.

Now I thank for the kindness of Australian friends.


My trip to Sydney

Written and Translated into Enlgish by
Miyoko Uchiyama

We arrived in Sydney at 4:00 pm on Oct 24. Mr. Ian MacPherson came to visit us at the hotel with a nice suit. He looked very smart in his dark suit. That night he invited us to a Chinese restaurant. This was not the best of ideas, as Mr. Yamagishi and I had stomach trouble due to the flight. Despite the condition of our stomachs, we drank a Tasmanian beer named "Kascade" (I'm sorry I can't remember the right spell). It was the most delicious beer that I have ever drunk. Even Mr. Asano, who drinks beer or wine everyday, was very satisfied with the taste. Even if he drank as much beer as he possibly could, he wouldn't be hangover. I asked him the reason. He answered that the water used to make Tasmanian beer is so clean.

The next day Rod came to see us at the hotel. First of all, he took us to Mr. Cook's house. We were made welcome and we ate a delicious lunch that his wife, Terri, had prepared. There was a comfortable terrace on the second floor from where we could see the Indian Ocean. After having a nice lunch and an enjoyable chat, we said good-bye to them and headed for Rod's house.

Rod's house was exactly as I had imagined. Anyone who has ever visited his house can understand what I'm trying to say. Yoko, Mr. Yamagishi and I were to sleep in beds, but poor Mr. Asano had no choice but to sleep on the floor.

The time came to take a bath. It was our only chance to take a bath in Rod's house. The bath was designed in a jag gee style, but no one knew how to use it. As a result, we had to bath in lukewarm water. The towel rail was a branch of a tree and the door of the bath resembled "Japanese Shoji", with no lock. When we used the bathroom, we had to shout first to let everyone know we were in it.

Later, Yoko began to prepare the rice for dinner. But we changed our mind and decided to eat "udon" for dinner, because we found some on the shelf in the kitchen. To tell you the truth, the kitchen was in a mess, so it took time to look for the things we needed to cook. To my surprise, I felt so at home in his kitchen.

While we were making "udon", Rod's friends, two couples, came over with salad and cheese and then the party began. The Australian wine they served us was so delicious. After the party finished, I witnessed how good Rod was at cleaning the kitchen. A man can't survive without any household skills!

I was wondering if I would be able to sleep at night, but thanks to the rhythm of the falling rain that muffled the noise of the traffic outside, I could sleep well. The next morning when I got up, I found that Rod was not in the house. A couple of minutes later, he arrived home with some food. When he took the orange juice from the plastic bag, he winked at me and said, "Some people have a stomachache". I was happy to hear his words and felt that he was so thoughtful. I felt like being more comfortable to stay in his house.

at QVB
At QVB. (from left to right)
Miyoko, Yukio, Yasuichi

Next it was time to go shopping! Rod sent us to the Queen Victoria Building and we shopped for two hours. Mr. Yamagishi didn't seem to buy anything. I think it's because he has got used to traveling. Mr. Asano had a gift for finding bargains. Yoko got into the spirit of buying souvenirs too and didn't hesitate to buy many things. As for me, I took my time, stopping by many shops to buy souvenirs for. I bought them for the people who had given me some money as gift.

After shopping, I decided I would like to try a kind of meat pie that Mr. Kondo had strongly recommended, at a place near the port. We asked Rod to take us there. It was different from what I had imagined. Inside the pie, there was something like beef stew. We ate it with "Favorite Sauce". Rod joked about putting sauce on the shirt that he had bought for Yoshi. I thought he really wanted to meet Yoshi in Sydney. Actually he said to me that he had recommended Yoshi's family to come to Australia.

It was 1:00 p.m. We were going to leave Sydney at 10:00 p.m. We still had time to spare, so we decided to go back to Rod's house. On our way to Rod's house, we came across the Double Bay. Rod joked again, saying double bay was double pay.

There was Koala Park just in front of Rod's house. Yoko had visited Rod's house many times, but she had never been into the park. She had only peeped into the park over the fence. It would be the last chance to go into the park, because Rod was going to move to another place, So Yoko, Mr. Yamagishi and I decided to go into the park and took a look around. This was my first time to see Koalas; they looked really like stuffed Koalas. When the park ranger took a sleeping koala from the tree, I asked his permission to hold it in my arms, but he turned down my request. The koalas have so thin bones that are apt to break.

Ahead, we found a koala eating gum tree leaves. After he had finished eating, he climbed down the tree and came over the fence toward us. We were going to pat him, but one of the tourists advised us not to touch him because he was a wild animal. This is the manner we are in the nature.

Afterwards, we went back Rod's house. He made us delicious pan cakes with whipped cream and honey.

We left Sydney with many wonderful memories.