Sydney - wow, what a place. I honestly couldn’t have wished for a better place to spend my Christmas and New Year.
The city itself was not what I was expecting at all. It may sound ridiculous but I never knew there was so much water there, it’s like a city built on water. And the amount of English people there either living or on holiday almost made it feel like home, to the extent that I feel as though I met just as many English as I met Aussies.
If you ever get the chance to get too Sydney, definitely take it. There is so much to do and no matter what sort of thing you are into there will be something for you and the sight of the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House together is something that can’t get old.
While we were there my friends and I spent most of our time either on the beach, in a bar, or shopping and I even experienced my first Thai massage. The holiday has definitely left a big dent in the bank account, but never mind, at least we were having fun.
I have discovered my new favourite bar, The Ivy on George Street which is a rooftop bar and a must go for anyone in the area and not just because it has a swimming pool in the middle of it.
We also spent a night camping on Cockatoo Island with my friend Dom’s family and a few of their friends. The main event of that night was Tequila tasting.. which as you can imagine left a few people a bit worse for wear and stumbling around the campsite in the early hours of the morning. It also allowed us to forget about the spiders that may have crawled into our tents, luckily we were unharmed.
We spent New Year's Eve in The Rocks which is a strip of bars by the Harbour Bridge. So, we were fortunate to be able to get quite a good view of the fireworks which were absolutely stunning and it was really something to be able to watch them and experience such a great city on New Year with two of my friends.
That, along with my two days spent at the SCG watching the final Ashes Test were the highlight of my trip. Sitting with the Barmy Army, singing, shouting and abusing the Aussies was a lot of fun, I wish I could repeat the songs that were sung at the Australians on here but I don’t think they would be appropriate.
There really is nothing worse than Australians when they are winning! My favourite area of Sydney was Manly, which is a suburb not far from the city. It is its own little world with beautiful beaches, lots of shops and a lively nightlife. I have already decided that I would love to play for the cricket team there next year so hopefully when I am back in England I will score enough runs to be able to warrant a place at their club.
Even though I was so far away and having such a great time I did think once or twice about home over Christmas and everything that would be going on. I did miss seeing all my friends and family over the festive period but quickly realised how lucky I was to be doing what I was doing. And the Australians were very hospitable on Christmas day, they made it rain all day so it felt just like I was at home.
Now I’m back in New Zealand I’m looking forward to getting back into training and working hard on my game for the next couple of months. Hopefully OC will be able to have a good second half of the season and make a real push in the one-day competition and try and get as close as possible to the final.
© Cricket World 2014