Our trip from Melbourne to Sydney got off to a great start; Qantas oversold Economy Class and we were bumped up to comfy Business Class. If only we could have such luck on the mind-numbing flight back to the States come next Saturday.
We arrived in Sydney as the skies began to clear from a morning rain and Saturday ended up quite sunny and hot. Arriving at the hotel was a challenge. Our taxi was redirected to the back of the hotel because Superman Returns was filming on the street in front of the hotel.
After getting settled into the hotel, we headed to Circular Quay, which has Sydney icons Sydney Harbor Bridge on one side and Sydney Opera House on the other. For lunch we went to Wolfie’s Grill (located in The Rocks precinct) and had Australia’s Famous Mixed Grill. Like Vlado’s in Melbourne, this dish is all about being a carnivore. Kangaroo tastes good, but the plate didn’t include crocodile as listed on the website.
We then made our way to the far side of Circular Quay and explored around Sydney Opera House. Totally fried from a long afternoon under the sun, we went back to the hotel to crash.
Unfortunately, Sunday wasn’t as nice as Saturday. An early morning drizzle quickly became a chilly rain. We worked our way over to Darling Harbor and did some shopping. By afternoon we visited the Outback Centre, which has some great items in their store, including a fantastic selection of didjeridoos. We attended the Sounds of the Outback show, which was educational and entertaining.
On Monday morning, the rain had abated and decided to do one of the harbor cruises, which was chilly but fun. An hour later we were back at Circular Quay and had lunch there before heading to the Hilton Sydney to start preps for Tuesday’s launch event. Once the demo machines were set, we headed out to North Ryde and the Microsoft Sydney building for the community launch event.
At the community event, I met several people, including David Gardiner, Dan Green, and Adam Cogan. After closing down the community launch, my wife, and I went out for a bite with fellow out-of-towners Joe Sango and David Lemphers, and then it was back to the hotel for e-mail and blogging.
Update: The main event went well. We had Prashant Sridharan doing the keynote demo, which means it went swimingly. In the afternoon, Andrew Coates, Dave Glover, Joe Sango, and I gave our final performance doing the software development life cycle session. Now it's on to Canberra, where Chuck Sterling and Anthony Borton will take Dave's & Joe's places. Post-launch event in Sydney, Andrew Coates held a fabulous event at his & Samantha's place in Maroubra, NSW. Awesome food and a good time was had by all.