Australia, by Eric

Botanical gardens and the Sydney Opera:

We were in the superb botanical gardens of Sydney! Inside there was the Sydney Opera! I really wanted to see it after knowing that it was the great monument of Sydney. We walked through magnificent plants. One had yellow pollen that stuck like paint and my big brother and sister put some on their face. Then my mother told them it would be hard to wash and my sister started rubbing her face to take it off. It was funny. We saw a giant tree that was home to numerous animals. We heard and saw many cockatoos: white birds. And different birds. I wanted to see a kookaburra and hear it shout because they were reputed to laugh. Unfortunately I didn’t see or hear one. We passed enormous trees and beautiful and colorful plants. In a big tree there was a big ball of fur which was maybe a koala! I was very excited! It was maybe the first koala I saw in my life! When it didn’t move we went away uncertain if it was a koala or not. We then strolled by the sea and arrived at the Sydney Opera! It was like in photos I had already seen. Here I could see it with my own eyes! It was giant and magnificently built. In front of it was a sign explaining how it was built. Beside the Sydney Opera we could see Sydney harbor bridge! It was a giant bridge and people were climbing it! We looked at the small figures climb the giant bridge. I would have wanted to do the same thing but we couldn’t. The next day we came back and went in an exposition of mountain plants and we saw carnivore plants! Some seemed like small long baskets filled with water. They ate insects when one would come and swallow it when it was in the water. Others had mouths with teeth and when insects touch a sensitive part they would close their mouth and eat. I tried to trigger one but it must have know it wasn’t an insect or I hadn’t touched a sensitive part. My brother succeeded in triggering a carnivore plant with a thin stem. We saw plants of yellow and purple. Going out of the exposition we saw a big lizard of about 70 cm! It was the biggest one I had ever seen! I saw its tongue as he opened his mouth! We stayed till it disappeared under a rock and continued our walk We saw other extraordinary plants and finished our walk in the Botanical gardens.

Blue mountains:

We were going to the Blue mountains in our rented car. In the Blue Mountains were the Three Sisters: mountains naturally shaped. The parking we needed was expensive, so we decided to find another parking. We ended by arriving at a few hours walk from our start point! We parked and started walking. My brother and I went quicker than the rest. Because my parents did long stops at the view sites. There were stairs and at the bottom of them after a bit of path was a waterfall! It wasn’t very impressing because of the other waterfalls I had already seen, especially compared to the one in South Africa. Then there were new stairs this time going up. On the way up my brother found an echidna: a type of porcupine! We all stopped to see it disappear in the vegetation and take photos. We then continued our walk. I arrived at our start point and waited for the other ones to arrive as well. My father took the longest because he had been talking to other people. Then we started our real walk. We first got to the giant stairways descending a cliff towards a forest surrounding the three sisters’ mountain. We descended the steep stairs stopping occasionally at the views. I heard some bells ring which actually were birds! At the bottom my brother had already continued to walk. As it was lunch time we gathered and found an eating place and ate what my parents had brought After we continued and I was given permission to go to the end directly without stopping to wait! I walked for a long time and finished at the same time as Xavier. I waited by looking at the train we were going to go on. It climbed and descended a really steep path! When my family came we went on the train! At first it went up diagonally quite quickly then it started going vertically! It was super! Like a small roller coaster! We went up looking down and it was finished. It was too short. Like a small pleasure which finishes. We had also finished our trip in the Blue mountains.

WaggaWagga:

WaggaWagga means place of many crows. It was the place where my parents had been fifteen years ago and where my big brother was born! The first thing we did was see the house where they lived! It hadn’t been demolished. There was still the tree my parents knew and the same house! It was a small house because at that time I wasn’t born. My parents explained to us the rooms. My sister then walked towards the door and a women then opened it and seemed surprised by our presence. She then asked us what we were doing, and we explained. We took a photo of us all in front of the house and departed. We then went in front of the hospital where Xavier was born! We passed it and my parents remembered old souvenirs. We also passed the cathedral he was baptized in!

Amanda and Father Murphy:

We went to Amanda’s farm. She is a friend of my parents. She lives on a farm and has 4 young children. Some people sometimes come to help manage the farm. It was a giant place, there were horses, goats and kids, geese, ducks, dogs, a black and white cat and an enormous and hairy pig! The first thing we did was see the pig. I climbed on him! It was a dream! Seeing a pig was good, but climbing! I was very pleased to have the privilege to go on a pig. When at the end depart was needed I sadly came off fearing it to be the last time I was so privileged. We then fed the horses and I was able to make one eat directly from my hand! (spilling loads). It started to rain and then poured hard and water rushed down to hit us, as we went back to shelter. Fortunately, it stopped quite quickly. I went out and saw a constructor working. I went close to look for a while. After a few minutes he asked me to help him! So I helped him till dinnertime. I helped him to cut wood, to draw lines, to find the tools, to check things and to carry some tools. It was really fun! When it was dinner, I stopped to eat, it was delicious! Next day, we went to see Father Murphy. He is the priest who baptized Xavier. I was very surprised of how he looked because I hadn’t imagined him like that. He took us to see different churches. One of them was made entirely of compressed earth! Another one had a garden with crosses everywhere. We then bought some catholic books and had an ice cream. We also had lunch. In the afternoon we went back to the farm and I went once more on the pig!

Car breakdown:

We were in our car. Suddenly a strange noise in the engine happened. Our car started to slow down! My dad tried to accelerate but nothing worked! He veered to the side of the road as the car stopped completely! We went out with our small bags and jumped over the fence! We then climbed down a steep path. My dad called the road assistance. My brother started to make a shelter. We ate some bread and cheese. After hours of waiting, a big truck came and took our car. We climbed in and waited.

The next day, we flew to Cairns.

Crater:

We went to an old crater. It was filled with water and fish lived there. There was a platform a few meters from the land. I swam at first as my brothers and father jumped into the water with loud crashes and splashes. I tried to jump into he water eyes closed and expected to touch the bottom with my foot at least. I didn’t. I marveled at the depth of the crater. I then pushed myself down in the water from the platform and didn’t touch the bottom! I then jumped again and dived. It was super!

The Doig’s family:

At last my most wanted moment came! The Doig’s family and their ten children: Emelda, Angus, Harold, Brendon, Francisca, Andrew, Claire, Bernadette, Patrick and James. I mostly played with Angus and Brendon. With Angus I played monopoly and risk and sometimes chess. Each game I won. It became boring after long games and I started playing with Brendon. At first he asked me if I wanted to swim in a mud bath. I went with him and my brother and we had a fun mud fight. I pushed aside the mud in the water to get some more sticky mud and changed it to ball which I mainly threw at my brother. Aftersome time went past we ended our mud fight. This became a habit. Angus was displeased with Brendon because he said he was “stealing” me. One day we brought boards to the river dam and I used them to protect myself from missiles and collected the mud on the board which hadn’t slipped off to make my missiles and throw them. Christmas came. I became worried with the fact I had nothing to give. The Doig’s father gave out the presents at nine in the morning. I was a bit sad I had nothing to give even as I received unexpected presents. They were unexpected because I was prepared to receiving nothing apart from a few sweets. But I got a “sock” for my MP3 I got for my birthday in India and a boomerang that I had hoped for but had never expected to have. We then had lunch. We were around a long table. We were 17 gathered around the table. We each had a cracker and popped it open. Inside there was a crown, a joke and stickers. We then fitted our hats and ate. There was ham, turkey with additional gravy, baked potatoes, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, peas, beer and ginger beer, cans of fizzy drinks and for desert a giant Christmas pudding. There was lots of food and drinks for everyone. At the end their was a lot left and a lot of Christmas pudding. We then played with our gifts and everyone’s gifts. Harold and Angus got guns which shot noisy bullets. Angus or Harold received a missile shooter and everyone tried it and shot people. They also got water guns. We played with the water guns and metal shields. We also saw Prince Caspian. I was too busy playing to notice Kung fu panda. The next day we went to the swimming pool in somebody’s garden We jumped on a trampoline, swam in the water, wet people with guns and ate a delicious banana cake with icing. The last day came and we parted, sadly.

Great Barrier Reef:

We went to the Great Barrier Reef. We went on a boat for three hours and had a mid morning tea. A photographer was taking a video of the day and asked me to act. I happily did. When we came in view of the barrier reef and the long type of boat anchored in the water I waited impatiently ready to jump out. I waited till we anchored to the pontoon and went out. As my family had chosen to do the semi-submarine first, I followed It is a boat which doesn’t really go under water but which has a bottom with glass windows. We looked for half an hour spotting fish and coral. We then went out and prepared for snorkeling. We also put an anti-stinger suit. When we were ready, we swam on the top of the water with our head in and our tube popping out. I saw magnificent fish and superb corals. I couldn’t go under water much because I wasn’t diving but still I could do and see a lot. I touched jelly fish and tried to catch a fish but they swam too quickly for my slow movements. I was with my Dad and he popped in the water with his tube! I stayed on the surface of the water. Sometimes my tube would fill with water and I would have to empty it. I went to a second type of long boat which was still smaller but it was closed, so I had to go all the way back with my Dad stopping at moments on a floating rectangle tube. When lunch time came, I took my equipment out and ate. Everything was cold but it was nice. Afterwards I went back in my equipment and swam a bit on my own. When the whistle was heard we had to go back to the boat. Getting out, we saw a sea turtle swimming. We then went back in the boat which went away from the snorkeling and diving boat and we went back home. On the way back, there were muffins and tea and lots of fruits. After about ten minutes the film of the day arrived. I saw myself a few times in it and saw a whale which was false. Then there were photos of the day. When we came to the port everything was finished.

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