"To strive, to seek, to find and not to yield"
- Alfred Lord Tennyson, 1833

"live deep and suck out all the marrow of life"
- Henry David Thoreau, 1845

"Some guys, they just give up living
And start dying little by little, piece by piece
Some guys come home from work and wash up,
And go racin' in the streets."
- Bruce Springsteen, 1977

"...to the heart, there's no time for you to waste.
You won't find your precious answers now
by staying in one place."
- Frank Turner, 2009

"The best things in life aren't things.
They're living and breathing."
- Michael Franti , 2011

"I owned every second that this world could give,
I saw so many places, the things that I did"
- Ryan Tedder of OneRepublic, 2014

All written content and photos by Rob Fulfer unless otherwise indicated.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Hello Brisbane!

Friday, August 29th - Brisbane, Australia - blogged from the hotel on Sunday, August 31st Wow, what a beautiful city! Split right down the middle by the Brisbane River, it reminds us both of Chattanooga, TN...only about 3 times as big. Lots of use of the river including walking trails along it, river taxis and ferries shuttling folks back and forth and up and down the river, attractions and restaurants overlooking the river, etc. Our lodging is at the Conrad Treasury Hotel and Casino (sorry, no poker tournies, Rob). The Conrad is a beautiful old building that was originally built as the land surveying offices, then it became an art gallery and finally the hotel that it is today. And we do mean old, the floors creak when you walk on them, it's only five-stories tall dwarfed by the modern high-rises around it, and the rooms are overly large and roomy. The casino is housed in the old treasury building (hence the name) right across a courtyard from the hotel. We spent the afternoon walking around the city and our best (and cheapest) find was the aforementioned river public transportation called The CityCat that gave us a perfect tour of the city from the water for $5.50 each that was good to use all day. We got off about dark on the "Southside" of the river across from our hotel and explored the walkways and parks that surround a couple of small universities there. Preparation was being made for the city's annual spring gala, Riverfestival, which kicks off tomorrow night with Riverfire (more on that in the next blog). Two attractions opening for the festival were Frogforest which allowed you to walk through a beautiful botanical garden and learn about the dozens of different tree and water frogs in the area. Each has a distintive call and you could hear those calls at each info station by stepping on a sensor in front of it. Very cool. The second attraction was not open for business yet, but is already an impressive site is this huge ferris wheel similar to one at Navy Pier in Chicago (we've been on that one) and The London Eye (not yet, but it's on our list). It opens tomorrow night and we hope to catch a ride on it before we leave. Dinner tonight was at our first-ever-to-try Vietnamese restaurant, Viet De Lite, and the food was great...especially the appetizer: prawn spring rolls. The service was brutally slow again. It seems that Australian folks working in the service industry don't really expect tips since most credit card receipts don't even have a tip line and people seem really surprised when you tip even a few cents for a beer (it's just 50 cents, dude, it's not like I made your car payment this month for you), but unfortunately that really seems to affect service somewhat (we encountered that in Italy last year as well). Not sure if it's a good trade-off to give up tipping for prompt service.

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