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September 24, 2015

Cross city

Just a catch-up on Tuesday night, the events of which were, as usual, directed by what we felt like eating.

Started off at the Town Hall terrace, which is doing live music for a few nights as part of Art and About.

Nice concept, nice setting, but the first band was underwhelming and it was starting to rain so after a beer we decided to bail.

We went to Vapiano, where I'd been once before and had pizza. The pasta is really good, with surprisingly reasonably priced happy hour. I'd go back for more.

We then decided to head onto The Rocks for dessert, since it was a nice way to walk off the dinner beforehand. On the way, with two drinks in me (I'm a lightweight) and feeling both exuberant and slightly aggressive, I cussed out a man who said something racist to us and it felt amazing and basically made the night a success (my friends disagree).

We ended up at Ananas where we split two tiny yet expensive desserts we really can't afford.

It's a French bar/restaurant which is kind of fancy, kind of kitsch (I mean, it's pineapple themed).

As you can see, I'm quite enjoying exercising my new camera. It definitely does better in low lighting than my old one, and it's so easy to carry around and whip out.

September 20, 2015


Last night YY and I went to check out Beams festival. It was a one-night event in Chippendale, around Central Park, with art and music (as well as food, but we were stuffed from YY's favourite dumpling place). I'm not sure how many years it's been happening, but this year was the first I'd heard of it.

Lucky I had YY to explain art things to me.

There were installations in the small terraces along Kensington St.

A 3D thing you watch on your phone inside this headgear.

As expected, we found our way to the bar.

My new favourite drink is rum and ginger beer. Also, check out the nifty cups, sealed like bubble tea.

There were tables with blank plastic pots and paint you could decorate them with...

And take some herbs home with you in (for free)!

I have no painting skills so my basil looked like a serial killer's basil.

We went around the corner to the green behind the shopping centre.

There was a silent rave (look I'm basically a party photographer now).

There was more happening on the streets behind the grass.

Intermittent smoke machine usage.

Interpretive dance, which I don't understand.

A small entranceway jammed with giant balloons...

Music YY was really digging.

I'd never actually set foot into this part of the city before last night. I'm thinking Chippendale isn't this exciting every night, but it had us drafting plans to move there.

Overall, it was heaps of fun! It was a great atmosphere but it wasn't overly congested. I'd say it attracted more of a young-adult crowd than a family one (like Vivid does). I love events like these, especially when they give you a new perspective on Sydney.

September 16, 2015

Second chances

I was pining after this parka all winter. It first caught my eye when I was walking through the men's section of Uniqlo, and I stopped to admire its many pockets, as well as complain about how women's clothing never seems to be made to be as practical. Then I made the fatal mistake - I tried it on.

But still, I persevered. I don't need a light jacket. There is no room in my life for a jacket like this I thought to myself as I clicked onto the website at least once a week to gaze at it. I thought I was going okay until I was window-shopping in the city Uniqlo one day and saw that they had sold out of my size and preferred colours, and in a classic want-what-you-can't-have moment, realised that I should have bought it all along.

However, not all hope was lost! Uniqlo in Miranda is not far from me, and I told myself that if they had it in stock there, I would buy it. And they did! I kept the tags on for a week and tried it with every outfit I wore each day to make sure it would work with my wardrobe before I could finally bring myself to cut them off.

UNIQLO parka, t-shirt, jeans (I need to be stopped) / Dune boots / Fjallraven Kanken backpack.

The inside pocket! It's massive! I've seen guys put newspapers into their inside pockets and I've wondered how... this is how! The outer pockets all have velcro closures as well, so my pocketable items have never felt so safe.

And that is the latest story from my love life. In its usual frustrating way, the winter to spring transition here has gone pretty quickly and jacket weather is pretty much over now. But I am planning on getting good wear out of it for travelling this summer.

September 13, 2015

Ko & Co

Ko & Co is a soju bar with Korean/Mexican food that I came across while browsing for new places to eat. It's tucked into a part of Surry Hills I hadn't been to before (as Deb, Waka and I found, it's a comfortable distance from Messina on Crown St - short enough so that it's not a trek, long enough to feel like you've walked off the gelato). It was early on a Tuesday evening when we went, so it was deserted, but it has a nice setup which would give it a good atmosphere when there are a few more people around.

Terrible photos I know! The fried chicken (hiding in the shadows) was really good. The Korean BBQ beef taco I got was okay, but whenever I eat tacos I freak out about the mess I'm making. The kimchi fries I enjoyed, but I enjoy all fries. I also got the cold press watermelon soju, which just tasted like watermelon juice. $9 watermelon juice.

I'm definitely going to try and find an excuse to go back for the fried chicken and a beer (or cocktail, if I'm feeling spendy), and maybe the kimchi fries to share (I'm not planning to share the chicken).

September 10, 2015

City snaps

As I said yesterday, I wanted to bond with my new camera, so I went to the city looking for some scenery. I started off with a walk through The Goods Line, which opened a few weeks back. It's a leisure space/park built on a disused railway line, like The High Line in NYC, but The Goods Line is currently only 500m long so comparisons are a little premature.

It kind of runs through the collection of buildings that UTS calls a campus (ha I'm just bitter that whenever I need to go to uni I have to get into The Bus Line From Hell).

As I'm sure all Sydneysiders know, that crumply building is designed by Frank Gehry, part of UTS.

It ends at the Powerhouse Museum, which I haven't thought about for years, and wasn't in the mood for because I was starving, so I continued on through Darling Harbour.

I won't comment on what I ate apart from the fact that a certain fast food chain is once again doing their peely stickers promotion and it's basically my favourite time of year.

I ducked into a cafe to study for a few hours, and emerged after it was dark to test out settings for city lights.

Better than an iPhone, definitely!

September 9, 2015


The latest addition to my family, my new weapon of choice.

The Sony A6000. Look at how small it is! So dainty! So elegant!

I'd been thinking about getting a mirrorless camera for about two years. My trusty Nikon D40, now in its seventh year of life, has never let me down, but it came to the point where the quality payoff vs. the weight and size wasn't worth it anymore. My iPhone camera is almost as good in bright lighting and less conspicuous to use. However, I'm never 100% pleased with my phone photos, and I still wanted to be able to have more control (and lens options) than what a point-and-shoot would give me, so a mirrorless was the natural choice. I went with this one because it has an APS-C sensor, (electronic) viewfinder, a built-in flash and was generally well reviewed.

I'm really excited about taking this travelling this summer (no more back spasms!), and will probably have it on me a lot more often than my DSLR was. I've got a prime lens all picked out as well, but I'm holding back for when I've used it a bit more and know what I need. I will take it out for a walk tomorrow and will be back with photos!

September 7, 2015

VFNO '15

On the first Thursday of September each year, Pitt St mall holds Vogue's Fashion's Night Out, when stores have promotions and discounts to try and create a general feeling of excitement to get people to spend their money. My friends and I attend, swing into the participating stores, grab what free food we can get our hands on, abuse the photobooths, and leave without buying a thing. I propose renaming it "family photo night", because it's the only time of year we have photos taken that get printed. Real talk though, I love it and it's always fun, if not slightly stressful with the pressure of needing to hit up every single store which is handing out ice cream. I can't believe it's been another year and September already...