Going for a walk about


Going on walk-about
Now that Testdrive has finished, I've been doing a lot of wandering about Sydney. What a loner you're probably thinking. But I actually firmly believe in solo time. I've had time to digest some of the training I've had recently, as well as develop my ability to observe other cultures and people and learn from them. This comes hard. This post is a description of some of the things I've observed.


Homeless or houseless?
One of the things that struck me while walking the streets of Syndey city is the number of homeless people. This really puts a face to the statistics. It's not that I've never heard that we have homeless in Australia, actually quite a lot! But someone pointed out to me recently, I think it might have been my brother, that the 'homeless' have their own inner community. Interesting. Anyone been involved in a soup kitchen/ homeless outreach before? Do tell…




I've included this picture of this guy that I bought some lunch for. I agonised over giving anything to him actually as I wondered about his circumstances and what he was doing about them.
I decided not to give him money, but instead buy the food for him (doesn't give him a lot of choice does it?) I really don't know what's the 'solution' to getting homeless people off the streets--
I'm sure it's complex and probably individual-based. Some just need a job. Others are trying to run away from something but are quite ordinary people, perhaps just a little crazy. Comments?


The funny turns in life
Last weekend I visited Liverpool, west Sydney and wandered around there for a bit. I just so happened to be in completely the wrong suburb of Sydney for an appointment, so that was interesting…* But one of the great outcomes of going to Liverpool was that I got a chance to see what Serbian and Macedonian men do on their weekends in Australia…would you believe…play chess! Loved it. Not that I understood a word of what they were saying…It was funny seeing these old men energetically discuss the game as they were playing it!


*I was going to meet up with a french guy to help me with my French and me with his English.
In theory, we were so organised as guys, we sms'd each other, sorted out the time and then place (or should I say rendre-vous?) but strangely there was an Elizabeth St and Park Rd/St intersection in 'Town Hall' and Liverpool! Ops… I must have been quite confusing to this guy when I
said "I'm sure there is no Starbucks in Liverpool!"


Doing things differently
Last night, I figured: sure, why not? I'm in Sydney. I'm young and I don't think I'll get many chances to do this again, so why not go for it? And so I did! I decided to go with my friend Raph to Circular Quay, leaving at 4 in the morning to be
ready for sunrise. We were pro photographers
(me with my little Lumix x2 optical zoom compact) and Raph with his truckload of Canon camera accessories. We were the A-team. Check out how excited I am!


We got lots of photos (to widely varying levels of quality) and had lots of fun. Brekky was great. Hash browns. Ah…. I learnt a bit more about my mate and I learnt to be alert to what distinguishes places, like malls/ bridges/ skies,etc. For example, it's often good to take photos of buildings with shadow rather than when it's midday, as my mate says it adds depth to the picture. As you probably can guess, photographers look at their surrounds with a particular mindset, just like engineers or architechs,etc. It's quite interesting how frameworks like these really focus and colour our perception of reality.






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