La Traviata at the Sydney Opera House

Another beautiful sunny day in Sydney.  We were intending to go back to Camp Cove today, but I’d not had a good night’s sleep – indigestion due to a most enjoyable over indulgence in roti probably – so we decided to stay downtown instead.  We went off to buy a replacement suitcase for the cabin bag that has disintegrated but the market is not open today, (story of the day really) and we couldn’t find anything else at the price we wanted to pay.  Will go back again later in the week.

Had a nice quiet afternoon around the hotel and then an early dinner at an Irish pub, just at the top of George St. called the Mercantile.  Bob had a pie.  Of course he did!!!!!  I had barramundi.  Good pub food.  No more.  But the price was right and it was a good atmosphere.

We then walked down to the harbour for our big night: Bob’s birthday treat: La Traviata at the Sydney Opera House.  Had a couple of glasses of fizz before it started out on one of the terraces.  It really is a most spectacular location.  Surrounded by spectacular lights, water, buildings….. Super!

The production itself was spectacular and to a full house.  The sets and costumes were amazing as you would expect.  We had some more champagne at interval time!  It went by very quickly.  I haven’t been to an opera in decades, but really enjoyed it.  Not often you see a full orchestra, massive sets and around 50 cast members on stage.

Afterwards, we slowly walked back to our hotel.  I had been hoping for a gelato from a very good shop down on the harbour called Messina.  But it was closed…. Lots of things were closed.  Nearly everything.  Without going into too much of a rant, I do find it quite extraordinary how early everything shuts down here.  Sydney after 1030 is quieter than York after midnight.  Why would businesses close down just as two massive concert halls are emptying and spilling people right past them??  England used to be like this in the 70s, but its unimaginable now.  I lament the loss of some of the aspects of 20th century UK society but the lack of anywhere to eat after 10pm, shops closing on the dot of 5pm, malls closing at 5…. these are things I do not miss.

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