22 January 2013

It's Complicated

A couple of weeks ago I published the internet’s most explosive revelation since Isaac Newton tweeted his discovery of gravity: I’m dating Kirribilli Kim and while the entire blogosphere may have been set a buzz by the information, that’s nothing compared with the furore of comments that erupted when we updated our relationship status on Facebook.

I had a laugh when I changed mine, as realised that since the first day I logged on all those years ago, my status had been set to “It’s Complicated”. And just as you might expect, switching off the sign that says "it’s complicated" was just the signal the karma fairies had been waiting for.

After Tassie, I spent a few days in Sydney with Kim. We hired a car to drive up to the North coast of New South Wales for Kim’s best friend’s wedding. Having not driven in Australia much, Kim has a tendency to drive on the wrong side of the road, so it fell to me to take the helm for an epic journey of discovery.

It should have been simple enough: Get on the Pacific Highway and stay on it for an hour and a half or so. But Sydney has a nasty tendency to spring surprise lane changes, merges and inescapable exits on unwary drivers. If you don’t know what you’re doing it’s easy to end up on the fast lane to Parramatta when you’re supposed to be aiming for the Harbour Bridge. It’s complicated.

By sheer force of will (and blatant disregard of a few road markers) we managed to stay on the highway until we got out of Sydney, but at some point we teleported off the freeway and found ourselves on a windy mountain scenic route, without either of us having any memory of having exited the freeway. It was a lovely drive actually, but I still have no idea how we managed that one. Fortunately the scenic route met up with the freeway again further up. I don’t know how much time it cost us, how we got on it in the first place, or even exactly where we went. It’s complicated.

But it all worked out in the end. We made it to our accommodation in a little village called Long Jetty. As you might expect, the main feature of the area was a really long jetty, which we walked out along around sunset. It was one of the most amazing sunsets I’ve ever seen; Kim must have taken upwards of thirty photos. Even I took a few.

On the way back we were accosted by a little girl who asked us if we had any fish for her, in a voice that suggested she might have been possessed by elves. We didn’t have any fish, so we ran away.

The next day was the day of the wedding. Kim and I got dolled up and made our way out to find the wedding site to make sure we’d have plenty of time and wouldn’t be running late. Sure enough, we found with plenty of time, so we went for lunch in a café up the road. Something went wrong with time, but I don’t know what. It’s complicated. The next thing we knew, we were running late for the ceremony anyway. Fortunately we got there before the bride, so it was all good.

After the ceremony we milled about for a bit and then made our way up to the reception. It was simple enough; Kim informed me that the reception was at a lighthouse just around the corner from the ceremony.

The lighthouse was a beautiful location, overlooking the beach and with lovely conference rooms. It had everything that could possibly be wanted, but it was missing one thing.

It wasn’t actually the reception venue. We had got the photo shoot location and the reception venue mixed up. So now we got to drive around I circles in a sleepy North Coast town, looking for a bunch of people celebrating a wedding. We tried the bowls club and the beach and the lighthouse again, and eventually we had to call someone to find out what the hell was going on. It was in the surf lifesaving club as it turned out, which was both lovely and very difficult to find by accident.

The following day we made our way back to the city and I attempted the most complicated operation I’ve ever undertaken: I took Kim to a cricket game at the SCG and then proceeded to try to explain to an American how cricket works.

By the end of the first innings, she had got the basic idea sorted out, and we were all ready to settle in and put her education to the test in the second innings when the skies opened and the entire match was rained out. No matter, you can check her progress here. I was disappointed not to get to watch the full match, but in the meantime we also got ourselves up on the big screen doing karaoke (don’t ask) and bore witness to the largest beer snake ever constructed. It made it all the way from one end of the Victor Trumper Stand to the other; a truly epic achievement, but perhaps an inevitable outcome at a cricket match with no cricket.

And then before I knew it, it was time to pack up and fly back to Darwin. But first I had to drive our hire car through Sydney peak hour to return it. I had to do three laps of King’s Cross just to get into the lane I needed. It’s complicated.

But that’s Sydney for you, I guess. It’s a nice place and all, but everything you put your hand to turns out to be far more complicated than you realised.

Make of that what you will.





Garry with 2 Rs
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