Sunday, February 12, 2006

sock lag

Woke up semi-bright and early at around 8:30 AM local time, which is somewhere around 7:30PM yesterday back in New York. Staggered down to find Claire, our irrepressible tour manager and off we went for a walk in King'’s Park, an absolutely huge land mass in the middle of town here. Being respectfully scared of the Australian sun and having spent the entire summer indoors rehearsing this show, I slathered up with sunscreen, put on my new mall flip flops and my new t-shirt and my decrepit jeans from the plane and off we went. The first part of the park is your botanical gardens situation, manicured and tortured into submission, but featuring the many varieties of plant life that are special to the very special ecosystem of Australia. These plants look like nothing I have ever seen except in the world of Dr. Seuss. To my eye, strange segmented greenery and incredible succulents of various types that have adapted over the millennium to this special climate. I guess I have just outed myself there, and the blog-reading public can now confirm what was long suspected: I am not a creationist, but am an old school believer in evolution. What can I say? It was drummed into me by my biology teacher Ann Terry in jr. high and I have not had the available cash to check myself in someplace to get the deprogramming done. Please do not hold this against me.

But before going to the park, I had an interesting discussion with Joe and Neal regarding the disappearance of socks when one crosses the international date line. Both these fine fellows have been here for a few days longer than the performers, setting up the show and getting all the technical aspects squared away and somehow, they both reported that they needed to do laundry again, though they had only been here a few days. We devised a theory that not only time is lost when crossing the date line, but so are socks and clean underwear. So there is also sock lag, in addition to jet lag.

As it is a day off today, everyone went their merry ways. A day of snorkeling and exploration awaited the ambitious among us who took off for Rottnest Island and its special ecosystem and reefs. Claire and I observed nature in its unnatural setting of the botanical park and then we hung a right and in about two minutes time found ourselves in the middle of the bush! Let me explain for those of you who do now know this expression. To say we were in the middle of the bush does not mean that there is one specific bush that we stumbled into in some tragic shrubbery mishap. No, "“the bush" is what the Australians call the woods or the forest or anyplace where there are not a lot of people and there is a bunch of nature. So, Claire and I were deep in the Australian forest, but it is entirely an urban forest, one way more forest-like than anything either Central Park or Prospect Park or the Bronx Botanic gardens has to offer. Amazing!

We walked for hours and finally made it back to the hotel where I searched hopefully for my suitcase which had not yet arrived. A few hours later, it had and I and the rest of the New York contingent enjoyed tearful reunions with our toiletry items. I spent the rest of the evening staring dumbly out the 14th floor window of my room, watching Perth get all twinkly before turning in to sleep after I had deemed that I had stayed up late enough to try and regulate my sleep cycle.

I will try to add a picture of some of the animals on Rottnest, as soon as I get one off Claire. There is a really cute one of Dan with a really cute Australian animal!


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