Wednesday, July 19, 2006

A report from the frontline

So, I'm in Sydney for work again and I have to say it's still not as good as Melbourne. The food is not as good, the coffee is not as good and the people are (mostly) not as good.

Sydney Uni, probably the oldest Uni in Australia, is where I am working. It's the equivalent of Melbourne Uni down south except for one stark difference. Sydney Uni is located in a shit-hole area. All the doors and windows on businesses are covered in armour, and the houses have bars on doors and windows. People look at you and wait for you to pass before they open their front doors.

The place where I am staying is next to Redfern railway station. It's nice enough, but you can get here two different ways from the Uni Project Office. One way takes you down a little residential street that has a couple of pubs, a little outcropping of cafes, newsagents, restaurants and grocers. Nice and friendly (by Sydney standards).

The other way, the way I will refer to as the WRONG WAY, takes you right through Redfern Railway station's car park. Now, I can take care of myself, and have not felt uneasy walking down a street at night since I was a teenager, but last night, I worried. I came around the corner that I thought would bring me to the door of my hotel, to be greeted by a bonfire and a large group of people. Some of them were lying down, most were drinking, and one was riding a skateboard around pretty erratically. There was vomit and broken glass everywhere. They were yelling and jeering at people as they went past, and one was following and mimicking a young woman.

Somehow, a dork in a suit with a laptop and a bunch of shit to carry (Me), managed to get through the middle of them without incident.

I have no witty comments about their ethnic background, mostly because there is nothing to say that hasn't been said, and it simply isn't funny.

When I walk to and from work the RIGHT way it seems like a nice enough place. I even found a café that makes coffee almost as good as the stuff I get in my favourite Melbourne cafe, and where the people talk to you.

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