Ok, I'm now in Sydney. I was told to be prepared for a buzzy; hip-happening sort of place. While Melbourne's conservative (small c; maybe a big one too), arty and sporty, Sydney's 'out-there.' I grabbed the Aussie-English dictionary for an explanation of that one: it's A Good Thing.
I've had the best of all starts here. Wandering along the waterfront I saw some roadies busily setting-up for a performance near the Opera House - for Coldplay. I grabbed one of the guys in black who looked rather important and told him I'd love him forever if he could get me into see the band tomorrow; to end a run of bad luck as it were. "So you're a Brit, and you're telling me you haven't managed to get to one of their concerts yet...what's all that about? Struth. See what I can do." So helpful, these Aussie chaps.
Anyway, I was given the nod, and at 5am the next morning I clapped, sang along and looked suitably besotted through four great songs (broken-up by some nice audience-band interaction, and a bit of hanging around), at the free mini-concert live on Channel 7's Sunrise programme. Brill.
After all that excitement I was rather peckish, and caught-up with some friends in the Strand Arcade in the City's shopping centre for an Italian; at what turned out to be the noisiest watering-hole in town. So why so busy? I asked the manager. "Don't you know, Thursday's the new Friday." Ok, so what do I do tomorrow then?
Later on I met an interesting chap wandering around in the arcade wearing a fetching fedora. It turned out he was promoting his hat shop by offering passers-by free gin. Would I like to slug a tipple or two? Worth a shot I thought...