It’s currently 2 am here but I thought I would write this now, as well tonight has been truly magical.
I’ve had a bit of downtime lately, and well as is my luck, Sydney has been hit with some of the worst storms it has seen in decades, they lasted pretty much three days, there was a vapour tornado circling the harbour, streets were flooded, electric was lost in some parts; and well what did we do, we had a bbq of course.
Here’s a local news story so you can see what was cracking off.
However, I did get a chance to see some of the city and learn about the history which if you're not aware is very interesting.
In January 1788, 11 ships arrived from Britain into Cove Bay (now Sydney) carrying a number of convicts from the Uk, crimes included stealing a loaf of bread and cutting down a tree without permission. As the prisons were full in Britain, this practice continued for 80 years and so began the colonisation of Australia. Here’s a link with more info.
It's all very interesting and quite disturbing what happened during these times, and in parts is very hard reading. The impact on the natives was shocking and to this day this is acknowledged by e.g. when you land on an aircraft and especially during the pride speeches a statement is read which say's
“I would like to acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of this land, and pay my respects to the Elders both past and present.”
Anyhow, on a cheerier note - and with the weather back to normal, today (Friday) is the start of the big celebrations, starting with an open-air concert tonight for 20,000 people headlined by Kylie, but first was the press conference this morning.
This is designed to welcome the world's media, give highlights of what to expect, and give you the chance to meet some of the people who organise it, as well as remember those who were the founders. To give you an insight The 78ers are a group of LGBT activists who marched in the original Sydney Mardi Gras on 24 June 1978 and participated in the subsequent protests against police violence and the arrests of participants. The parade now still follows the same route that they did ,be it on a much bigger scale.
Again here is a link if you want to know more.
Now truth be told, I didn’t actually have to cover the concert tonight, due to the high caliber of acts, media access was restricted, however, me being me still managed to get myself in and well I can honestly say I have never experienced anything like tonight.
A full concert of opera, choirs, drag artists, ballroom showcases (the ballroom scene over here is massive), an incredible drone light display above the city, Charli XCX, and finally Kylie closed the show, brought the house down, and just when you thought it was over surprised everyone by bringing her sister out to sing with her (that’s Dannii in case you didn’t know) all of which was topped off by massive firework display, There were tears everywhere and as the people piled into the streets to continue the party the feeling of love, happiness, and celebration spreading into the street of Sydney was electric.
Here are some links for the highlights.
I really can not describe the feeling of being surrounded by 20,000 people (admittedly a little drunk) celebrating love, equality, and each other. As I sit here typing I have hairs standing up on my arms, I feel a tingling sensation all over ( not just the watermelon spritzers I have become a fan of) and I can't stop watching Kylie highlights. It truly was magical.
So as everyone is out partying, alas not for me. I’m sitting in bed with a Maccies writing this and preparing for the parade tomorrow. Rock N Roll huh?