What a whirlwind the past few weeks have been! I know I haven’t written anything in about 2 months. It’s definitely been on my mind, I just needed to find the time to do it. Currently sitting snuggled on the couch on Friday night, clean house, candles lit, waiting on Caleb to finish at the lab.
Caleb has done really well with school and research but I will get to all that in a moment because I’m overdue to share about our time in Sydney!
A few weeks ago, our friends Brent and Sam came out for an Aussie holiday. They wanted to see Sydney and Caleb and I hadn’t been there yet either. We all decided to meet there for the weekend before heading back up to Brisbane. There are so many things I could say about lovely Sydney, but I’ll just hit a few of the good ones:
One of Australia’s (and the world’s) most recognizable icons, the Sydney Opera House attracts over 8 million people each year! It was a bit surreal to stand in front of it, look at the details of its mosaic tiles, and stare at its architectural beauty from afar.
We decided to try something that everyone seems to recommend — and I can see why. We took a 1.5 hour tour around the harbour on the top deck of a Captain Cook Cruise ship. It was pleasant, informative, and we got to the cityscape from the water.
One thing I enjoyed was the number of street performers all around! It felt like New Orleans and Chicago and Nashville right there on the harbour.
Speaking of Chicago, if I could compare Sydney to any city, I’d say it’s a lot like Chicago. The burbs and neighborhoods have a charm of their own. Cozy nooks and different vibes all around, but a big city feel downtown. A short walk away from our Airbnb was the most adorable eatery called the French Touch –best cafe latte of my life, and amazing breakfast.
On the way downtown one morning, Caleb happened to see a billboard for a live spider exhibit at the Museum of Australia; it was all he could think about from that point forward. I wasn’t about to leave without him getting his spiders (it’s called love, and marriage) so he and I saw allllll the spiders. I must say it was actually pretty cool. Caleb’s still trying to convince me that he needs a tarantula for a pet, but that is not going to happen! NOT IN MY HOUSE
I’m saving the best for last, here. Who’s heard of a man called Zumbo? No? Well, he is a pastry chef who makes the most amazing creations. He has his own dessert competition on TV and a few shops all around Melbourne and Sydney. When we knew we were coming to Sydney, checking out a Zumbo shop was literally the first thing I put on our Excel Spreadsheet (um, yeah). BEHOLD
But guys, it doesn’t stop there! The next weekend, we drove up to Noosa Beach, north of Sunshine Coast. Sam and I needed coffee, of course, so the guys picked a spot on the sand while we went on our way. Then, there in the open window straight ahead, I happened to look up and see the man himself, Adriano Zumbo having a chat with a mate (I presume)! I did a double take, grabbed Sam, proclaimed the sighting, and became giddy with shock.
The award really goes to Sam for walking right up to him and introducing me as a big fan. He was super nice and so was his friend, who I could tell thoroughly enjoyed taking our picture. It was the white chocolate shell on top of the V8 Vanilla Cake (look it up). Basically, I left even more obsessed.
It was so great having good friends come out to Brisbane and stay with us. It reminded us how much we really miss all of our friends and family back home. And it allowed us to have a little fun as well!
Now for a Caleb update. Year One down! Caleb received “Distinguished” grades both semesters this year. On top of that, he spent time researching with a small team when he could, which will likely turn into a publication naming him as a contributor. Today was his last day of required shadowing for year one as well. He went 4 weeks under the supervision of the Director of Maternal Fetal Medicine at Mater Hospital, one of Australia’s top facilities for treating fetal complications. He was offered to come back whenever he has time to shadow again, and was offered some more research opportunities with the doctors there. It makes me so happy to see him enjoying his work and his experiences. He’s a hard worker, sincerely loves to learn, and makes friends wherever he goes. The medical world is lucky to get him. I’ll share, I guess 🙂