Who said that low-cost airlines were uncomfortable? We had an amazing flight from Singapore to Sydney with Scoot Airlines. The seats were indeed not the best we’ve ever seen… but each of us had an entire row of them to sleep on! Leaving at 2am in the morning has its perks.
We arrived at Sydney on a beautiful day, and took the bus directly to Bondi Beach – the most popular of the Sydney beaches – towards our hostel. It’s nice to be back in an English-speaking country!
One of the first things that stroke us was the number of foreigners in Sydney (and especially Bondi). There are so many backpackers from all over the world, it’s almost surprising to meet with a real Australian. Although it’s amazing to meet with people from all over the place, we found that most over them were not the brightest people on earth – alright let’s say it, most of them are incarnations of the perfect douchebag – and that there is way too many French people (that we’ve been avoiding like hell).
Thomas trying to blend in
Settling In Bondi
As always, things never go according to the perfect plan. Nobody was waiting for us at the airport to offer us cool jobs and the perfect house-share – swimming pool included, it goes without saying. Instead, we started to stress a little bit when we realized that it was actually quite hard to find housing for two at a reasonable price, and the prices of hostels in Sydney are crazy expensive – A$70 to A$80 per night for a double room.
We wanted to stay in Bondi, probably one of the nicest suburbs of Sydney:
- The beach is amazingly beautiful and a true surfer paradise
- There is a big mall and commercial streets where we can find anything
- It’s only 20mns from the city-center by a direct bus that runs day and night
Our rooftop apartment
After a few days of unsuccessful search (at some point we even though about booking an apartment through AirBnB with a AU$4000 monthly rent, just to get it over with), we finally found the perfect place:
- We have a great roommate of our age, Anna, an Italian girl working as a waitress
- The location is perfect: right in between the beach and the mall, we are only 10 minutes-walk from each of them, and the bus-stop to the city is 25 meters from our doorstep.
- Most importantly, we have our huge private rooftop terrace, on which we can have diners, barbecues parties… the perfect place to spend summer!
The rooftop. We’re still missing a barbecue (not for long!)
Thomas with Anna (on the right) and her friend Serena
Scoring jobs at the same time of the apartment, that’s how we roll
On the day we moved in, we helped the previous occupant, one of Anna’s coworker, to move out. That was a good call, since as a thank you he introduced us to a hotel owner in Bondi who needs workers to help her on a regular basis – an easy way to pay part of our bills.
Thomas’s way of gardening
He also help us having a trial at the Icebergs, Thomas as a glassier (polishing the bar glasses, organizing alcohol stocks), and myself as a runner (bringing plates to the tables in the restaurant). The Icebers is a fancy bar-restaurant right on the sea, and the atmosphere in the staff areas of that place is absolutely intense, stressful and unfriendly as hell. Everybody is yelling around, and there is absolutly no place for training or coaching. Although Thomas didn’t hate it as much as I did and worked there for 3 weeks, the bar staff being a little bit nicer than the restaurant one, we didn’t want to waste the Sydney part of our trip by working in such an horrible atmosphere.
The Bondi Icebergs
Oups – we just bought surfboards
After two weeks in Australia, we finally went to a surfshop to buy a couple of shortboards (a JS 6,3 and AH 6,5, shaped in Australia). Living 10 minutes away from the beach, we can go down there every day for a quick (or not) surf session. As much as we love those boards, we’re also looking forward to go surfing on the Australian coast instead of on a beach, where there is tens of surfers a square meter. But it’s definitely nice to be back in the water.