Scenic World

My primary school trip to scenic world recalls some arcade games and the train ride to the bottom, a rock strewn landscape area where we walked around and I was snapped running up the side of the mountain. As a pre-teen, I was not concerned with issues such as paying tickets or where the toilets and eating were located. I distinctly remember trying to sneak away from the group to play the new machine gun game before getting back in line to catch that train ride. It was so disappointing they only had 3 machines.

Today’s scenic world is a really awesome day out for my family. Zero arcade games just shows how much more interesting they’ve made the rest of the place. The ticket price was well worth the day’s surroundings/activities.

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Picture: Seen from Echo Point, the main facilities for Scenic World sits a top of cliff edge.

We got there early, because we refused the kids request to do the Echo Point to 3 Sisters Walk (another story for another day.) During these school holidays they offered a discount for the early birds which made a good value activity a little cheaper.

Cable Way

Of course, the first thing you do when you get in is try to get on the the rail ride. Unfortunately, everyone had the same thought so we quick detoured to the Cable Way. Down on the Cable Way we dropped into the valley. Of course the priority at this point was to get to the front of the cab to ride it down.

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Our tour guide was explaining about the different rock structures, 3 sisters while we were awestruck by the height we were up and dropping from. Breathe in, don’t look down, stay away from the window. The temperature dropped noticeably as we went and down the bottom the air was ‘different.’

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It wasn’t until we were half-way down, when the captain of the boat directed us to views to the back (up side.) It was a pleasant surprise to realise that from any seat (not that anyone was sitting) on the ride there were great views (something immediately obvious to anyone obervant enough to notice there was glass all around? duhhh duhhh.

Walk Way

What can you find at the bottom of a steep ride, but .. a lot of walk. Wow, lush vegitation all over the place, I definitely don’t recall any of this from those hazey days as a primary schooler. Even better, they have elevated timber walkways all around so for all the extra traffic around, we’re not contributing any further to damaging the place.

Love the little signs explaining different aspects of the forest. Unfortunately, walking around with a 4 and 6 year isn’t conducive to long moments of contemplation. What’s this, let’s go over here, what’s that, tip your in…

There’s a fair bit of conservation work of what the property was previously used for, which includes retention of some of the things that we used to do down here that destroyed the place. Old mine shafts have been preserved and exposed highlighting the difficulties of early workers (no chocolate cakes for supper) and their hazards (ventilation into those mines looked real dodgy.)

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We ended up with 3 trips down here.

Toilet Runs

One constant about going places with kids, it’s not water that is a priority. You need to be perenially aware of the closest toilets. Unfortunately, everyone lacked the foresight to trash the forest any further by putting toilets down here.

Three times we went down, twice the time was cut short for the toilet run.

Be not surprised. The ticket staff clearly tell us before we’re given our tickets (wrist bands) that there are no toilets down in the valley. Repeat that, there are no toilets down in the valley.

Rail Way

The key benefit of so may trips into the valley? We get dizzy with all the rides, which includes 3 trips on the rail. And each of those runs had to be the front row seats.

Seating designed for 3, the kids squeeze it so they can all fit in the front row. Because there’s nothing like hanging out for an 800m free fall drop (should the rail fail.) We rush back up for the toilet run, and the first we they want to do afterwards is to queue back down. Guess what? Everyone wants to ride too, so instead of taking seats back at the back, we wait for the next run so we can go down on the front row.

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In my primary school days they had chicken wire type caging to keep the chooks in the nook as the train went down. Before then, one of our church members went down those original seatings, they did it with less safety. There was only one setting for the seats and it’s a weird ride. The ride is still weird, but this time the ride just seems way too safe.

The metal caging looks so ‘superior’ and safe it’s hard to feel in any danger. They play some sort of Star War’ish theme music which is cool. Definitely way too safe, good for those with a faint heart for heights.

Now, those early riders can definitely say you had to be seriously daring to get into a box car that dropped over the edge of a slide/cliff. And they wore their Sunday best when they were doing it too.

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Sesilia and Sisitoutai on a replica of the 1st Rail. Think about going down on that one, only for the cruelly brave.

Where else can you go?

Happy Australia Day 2012

It’s Australia day in Oz today (well yesterday by now) and what is more iconic for Australia (other than the Opera House) than Vegemite and Weet-Bix.

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What a crazy way to start off the festivities than to rush off to the local supermarket (Woolworths) to do some last minute groceries (aka. get the food needed for the day.)

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The produce section of the supermarket still had mangoes in season. Wow, we loaded up on the Watermelon yesterday, so we’ll skip the mangoes today until that’s worn down. Carrots never seem to go out of season? but that could possibly be another story altogether.

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Sesi and ‘Ofa did some early morning cooking, and we packed our lunch to head off for the Australia Day celebrations.

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2012 we celebrate Australia Day at the local (close enough to be local) swimming establishment (Homebush Aquatic Center) which was part of the facilities during the Sydney Olympic Games 2000.

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Do you think the kids loved it ? They were crazy dancing in the streets (pool)

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It was fighting kicking feet, and slamming hands to get them out of the pool long enough to get something eat. And it was another story getting them out at the end of the day so we could get home.

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We all hope you found something fun and interesting for this day.

‘Ofa atu from Sydney, Australia Day 2012

At the football

‘Ofa took Friday afternoon away from the cleaning jobs, to hang out with the boys and they tripped to the local football (rugby union) tournament. The finals between the Tupou College Old Boys team and Marist Bros team. The two teams have been combative and close through out the various tournaments this year and there were no favourites, going into the finals.

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Seluini and Sisitoutai were definitely in the spirit with their blue gear, and Sisitoutai went the extra mile (like his Grandma Fe) and had a bright blue hat on top that is noticeable to everyone.

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Of course, dressed in blue we were a little one-sided in our support.

Uncle Semisi (‘Ofa’s brother and Seluini’s dad) is coach of the Old Boys and Seluini was the sand boy runner (although these days it’s called a “kicking T”).

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Unfortunately, the Marist team weren’t accommodating to our aspirations. They went ahead and stole the show (they won.)

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It was a good hang out to be with family and friends, shouting at other family and friends (both in support and fun derision.)

We drowned our sorrows in bitter water.