Friday, May 19, 2017

My Last Day in Adelaide (Postcards from Adelaide Airport...)

Day 6, my last day in Adelaide, started early.  I got up and ate what was left of my fresh food from the central markets and packed my suitcase. Checking out of my hotel early meant that I could tick off some of the items on my Adelaide bucket list.

By the way...  My serviced apartment had a luggage storage service, that means you can check out, but leave your luggage with them while you take a last look around (or whatever) and come back to get your luggage when you're done.  When booking your accommodation, this service is usually listed along with the other facilities/ services that they offer. If it's not listed, most would probably be happy to do this for you if you ask.  I was so glad this was available. 

I hopped a bus back to the Central Market and cut through the market to get to Gouger Street and find The Mars Bar.  It's the only LGBT bar in Adelaide.  Due to the early hour, it was closed.  But that was fine, because I just love the name of the place and I wanted a photo outside.  From the outside, it was a bit of a let down.  Something tells me, it is a whole lot different at night. 
Lacey got legless at the Mars Bar!! LOL

As you can see, I snapped a few photos then meandered back towards the Market.  I took a photo of the Chinese restaurant that my Uncle had recommended... it was closed too. I grabbed a hot pastry from one of the lovely bakeries at The Central Markets. 
The Fortune Duck on Gouger St, apparently does huge serves. 
I was a bit reluctant to eat there as I knew I would end up wasting food.

I hopped on a bus back to my hotel, retrieved my luggage and had a good old chat to the concierge (before you get excited, SHE was more of a 20-something kindred spirit, as we bonded over favourite Disney movies and books).  I hopped back on the bus to the airport.  That was sad.

Adelaide Airport does its job well and is a lovely small space, in comparison to Sydney or even Brisbane.  They have a few specialty shops and restaurants.  I stopped by Smiggle to buy some pens on sale.  They have a South Australia Icons store that sells everything from Barossa Valley wine, Beerenberg Jams, Haigh's Chocolates and more.  The selection is small compared to going to the real thing, but would be a perfect place to pick up some last minute souvenirs.  I visited a specialty chocolate shop (I can't remember the name), that is quite popular in Adelaide (not Haigh's), and finally located a chocolate peanut butter truffle.  I have a friend who loves this combination, so I bought one for him.  I also had one last gelato before I boarded the plane.  It was delicious!

The flight home was uneventful.  The family greeted me at home and we had a rather noisy dinner.  Shelly planted herself squarely on my suitcase in a rather obvious protest against my leaving for so long.

Then, that was that. 

Oh Adelaide, How I miss you!

See you all next week.  When I will update you on all the goings on around here, since I arrived home.  Which was almost six weeks ago.  So sad. 




Sunday, May 14, 2017

Postcards from Adelaide: Day 5

Glenelg

Everyone says that if you are in Adelaide you have to catch the tram to Glenelg.  It turns out, you can catch the bus too.  Glenelg is all about the tourists while Henley Beach is perfect for the "local" experience.  I hopped on a tram at King William Street (at the end of Rundle Mall) and rode all the way to Glenlg.  The trip took about 30 minutes.  The Glenelg tram stop is (literally) on the beach and about a two minute walk from The Beach House. This is like an arcade or beach side carnival.  There is a ferris wheel (although it was out of order when I was there), air hockey, video and arcade games, water tube boats, a café and (the main reason I went), Putt Putt a.k.a. mini-golf. 

I had fun moving through the 18-hole course, although there were several young people playing in their swimwear and that was a sight I didn't need.  If you look beyond the course while moving through it, you can see the beautiful blue water and gorgeous white sand of the Glenelg Beach.  I also had fun taking photos of my mini travel buddies.  Ha ha... he he he!!



You can easily spend a full day in Glenelg with the beach, boardwalk shopping and dining, and special events.  On the holidays they have a moonlight cinema open on the beach.  Purchase a ticket and you can watch a new release laying on your beach towel.  I only spent the morning there as I had more things to do in the city.  By the way, there are mini-golf courses at West Beach, Victor Harbour, Semaphore and Hahndorf.  If I had more time in Adelaide I would have played on all of the courses.  At least I can add them to my list of things to do next time. 


After a game of Putt Putt, I checked out a few shops on the boardwalk before hopping on a bus back to the city centre.  After a light breakfast in my apartment, I had quite a day of dining out.  Considering I hadn't eaten out that much, I decided to check out a few places that I'd heard were worth a visit.  The afternoon was spent just exploring and it was great!  

Adelaide Dining

St Louis Desserts- they have restaurants at Glenelg and in the city.  It was definitely worth a visit.  There was a selection of cakes, slices, gelato and made to order delights such as waffles, fondue, crepes and churros.  I had fun just reading the menu.  The range of hot and cold drinks include the humble cuppa as well as some fancy, sweet creations.  They also serve breakfast.  Check out the website (linked above) for more info.  I had the strawberry Nutella crepe, which was divine!


Peter Rabbit- is a restaurant on Hindley Street. You can visit the real live rabbits in their hutch behind the restaurant, while waiting for your order.  I had poached eggs and bacon on sourdough with avocado, which was delicious.  I would liken the experience to having lunch in Mr McGregor's garden.  The décor suited the theme which was lovely and, perhaps the best review, it was busy.  I loved the comfy couch, books and piano in the corner.  It's worth a visit and is a nice place to catch up with friends or sit alone and enjoy.  The menu included vegan options too!


Hindley St - is another dining hub.  I was told by a friend that I "had to" walk up Hindley St.  They failed to mention that the best experience would be had at night when all the clubs are open.  So, my mid-afternoon walk was exceptionally uneventful, as I walked past dozens of closed bars and night clubs.  I did happen upon a little independent book store and enjoyed reading the titles, old and new, on the shelves.  The store itself was just a wonderful place to be.  I could have spent hours there.  Unfortunately, I don't remember the name of the store. 


The Bunker Sports Bar and Grill
After another day of walking far and wide, I was not in the mood for meal preparation, so went to The Bunker, which is the sports bar situated under my apartment building. The restaurant is a big space with lots of booths and dark alcoves.  You can be in the middle of the action or hide in a corner if you like.  Now I can say I have been to a sports bar.  I can't say I will do that again, but the food was yummy!


That was Day 5.  Next week, I will tell you all about my last day in Adelaide. 
Sigh... I miss it.


Sunday, May 7, 2017

Postcards from Adelaide: Day 4

Day 4 was Cat Day... it was busy and relaxing.  It was exactly what I wanted and needed.  I was truly content when I finally fell into bed at the end of Day 4.  Sigh, memories of Day 4 will always make me want to return to Adelaide. 

Big Cat Interactive @ the Adelaide Zoo

All the interactive and special experiences at the Adelaide Zoo begin early in the morning, well before the zoo opens.  It was an easy walk and bus ride to the Zoo from my hotel so I was very early! We were met by a volunteer and entered the Zoo using a staff entrance.  The volunteer walked us to the Big Cat Building as she told us about the history of the Zoo and some of the buildings we were walking past. She introduced us to Matt, the Cat Zoo Keeper.  He was a really nice guy who has two cats at home and was happy to spend an hour with some crazy cat ladies. The group was made of myself and a small family (Mum, Dad and 17 year old daughter), and they allow a maximum of 6.  Four was plenty of people, in my opinion. 

We started by meeting the gorgeous tigers and hearing about the breeding program, the daily routine of the tigers and their diet.  The others in our group were able to feed the tigers a treat of lamb leg bone.  We spent about 25 minutes in the tiger building and looking into the main tiger enclosure.  The tigers at the zoo are quite old and no tiger would live so long in the wild. The eldest of the tigers takes a strong pain medication to treat arthritis.  I laughed when I realised it is the same medication I take for my chronic pain.  It was at this time the Zoo keeper revealed he takes the same allergy medication that the Zoo's panda has been prescribed.  Obviously the dose is different. 

Mudjimba, the lion top left, likes to greet keepers and guests by
standing on his hind legs and scraping the bars on the door of his enclosure. 
Top right: the lioness I got to feed. 
Bottom Right and Left: the oldest female tiger living at the zoo.

We moved into the Lions' building, next, where we met Mudjimba - a gorgeous lion, who likes to act tough.  He actually has a lot of ongoing medical conditions, which was sad to hear about.  We also met his girlfriends, a set of lioness twins who were born at another zoo.  They bully Mudjimba quite a bit.  It seems they're very catty!  LOL.  I fed a treat to one of the lionesses.  She was only interested in the food!
Meet Mudjimba.  Isn't he gorgeous.  Those eyes. 

Our volunteer escort accompanied us the whole way and took some lovely photos for me when I was busy (feeding etc).  When we finished with the Zoo keeper and seeing the cats, the volunteer took us to the Zoo Gift shop and we received a FREE water bottle with a small booklet of discount vouchers for the café, gift shops (yes, there are two) and membership.   Then, our tour was over.  I headed off to see a few of the animals - Cyrril the emu and the Meerkats, the pandas, the lemurs and more - before rushing off to Hashtag Meow. 
Cyrril the Emu


Meerkats are so CUTE!

Hashtag Meow - Cat Café

Another easy bus trip and another short walk got me to Hashtag Meow (click here for more info).  It's the only cat café in Adelaide and has been open since December 2016.  They already have 21 cats in residence and I wouldn't be surprised if they continue to grow.  All the cats have been rescued from homes where they were no longer wanted or the street after being abandoned.  Most of the cats are pure bred and absolutely gorgeous.  The owner/ manager, Amelia, is a lovely young lady and she welcomes all her guests with a smile.  She is happy to chat or leave you alone to relax in the company of the cats. She told me about all the cats and listened to my stories about Shelly and my holiday.  Most of the cats were happy to join in a game or curl up beside you for a pat or a neck scratch.  As it was a fairly quiet day (mid-week afternoon), Amelia let me stay a little longer than my allotted hour (for no extra charge) and it was really hard to leave.  I felt so at home there. 

I took dozens of photos of the cats at Hashtag Meow.  These are just a few of them. 
I loved the kitty scratching train. The kitties loved playing on it and sleeping in it too!


The State Library of South Australia

The Mortlock Wing


The almost puurrfect day (see what I did there?!), was wrapped up with a visit to the Mortlock Wing of the State Library of South Australia. They had an exhibition of the History of Toys and Play, which was just lovely. They had toys, games, books belonging to prominent Australian families (historically).  They also had letters and diary entries of the children and adults who had owned the toys.  It was beautiful. They had some interactive exhibits for kids to enjoy as well and a guest book.  The whole thing probably only took about 40 minutes to explore but it brought back some truly fond memories for me. 

There is little I can say about the Mortlock Wing - because if I start, I won't stop! - except that it is the original building that housed the State Library Collection.  The architecture is beautiful and it now houses the original 'general collection'. The books are very old!  University students sit among the old books with their laptops and ipads.  Anyone can wander in and take a book from the shelves to read or simply smell.  It's beautiful!! I didn't get to the library until after 3pm but at 4:45pm, the security guard had to come find me and tell me it was time to go.  I could have spent another two hours there, at least.  Oh, what am I saying? I could have easily spent another day there! 
Photo from the second balcony of the Mortlock Wing.

That's one world class library ticked off my bucket list, just another hundred or so to go. 

It wasn't until this particular day that I realised how close my apartment was to the Cultural Precinct including the Library, the Art Gallery and the Museum.  It was not just Walking Distance!  It was a short walk!! Thank goodness for that, because my feet were very sore by the time I found the exit to the library. 

That was that, I meandered back to my apartment and had fruit and cheese for dinner.