What did we do today?
We woke up at 4:45 this morning. ‘Nuff said. It’s tired out. We got on the bus and drove to the Auckland Airport. Today we took a walk around the city. We went to the park and saw a fountain, we to the Sydney Tower, and saw Sydney Harbor. We went to an Opal Factory and had lunch in a giant food court. I ate a pide… It was like a pizza without sauce. It had cheese, chicken, and pineapples on it. It was delicious!! We went to an open air market and I got to try out my awesome China haggling skills. I could only get the price down minimally though… Australia is nothing like China! It started raining when we began walking back to the hotel. We must have walked two miles in the rain… it was crazy! Our spirits were high though and we made it through. We were really tired when we got back though… We ordered pizza and had fun bonding at the hotel.
Prompt: Talk about Sydney and compare and contrast it to other major cities you’ve been to.
Sydney is absolutely gorgeous! It looks more like Chicago than Auckland did because the buildings in Auckland were all mostly only a few stories high, whereas in Sydney there are plenty of skyscrapers. When we first arrived in Sydney, Katie turned to me and asked if we were really staying here for the next couple of days I told her yes and asked what was wrong with that. She told me it looks just like Chicago and that it was just a city. This made me think: well… why is this city so important? What makes it unique and stand out against all other cities across the world? It’s the similarities and the differences that make a place memorable. The similarities help connect the traveler to the place. Once the person has this personal connection to the area, they can understand and relate it back to their own lives. You’re no longer looking at scenery; you’re looking at something meaningful to you. An example of this is today when we saw how the buildings looked a lot like Chicago or when we saw a Subway restaurant. The differences between cities are important to see after you recognize the similarities. The differences show a city’s uniqueness and individuality. These are often the monuments, like the ones we saw today: the Sydney Bridge, Harbor, and Opera House. These things are unique to the city and make Sydney, Sydney. You can truly appreciate the differences once you can see the similarities.
The more you travel, the more connections based on similarities and differences you make. For example, the Sydney Tower allowed us to see for miles all around the city just like the Skydeck at the Sears/Willis Tower in Chicago. The Sydney Tower offers bungee jumping, but the Chicago tower offers aerial views. Another example is the smells in the city. It smells really clean and open in Sydney… I love it! Chicago doesn’t smell as nice as Sydney, and Xi’an smelled even worse than Chicago. There seem to be many green zones in Sydney which is similar to Hong Kong and St. Louis. Places such as Chicago and Beijing don’t have many of these.
The differences and similarities between cities is what makes you remember the important things in life and travel!