Sunday, December 12, 2004

Another blast of summer heat. Already baked an uneven shade of pink on the forearms and on my face. A pretty colour, if somewhat sensitive, in the not-too-painful sense.

Having a nice, lazy Sunday afternoon sitting in the balcony of Room 108. Am listening to the rock fountain cascading into the swimming pool below. Not much else to see, hemmed in as we are by several other high-rise hotels closer to the beach front.

Woke up at 0530 this morning but the sun was already pouring through the gaps in our curtains. It was so bright I thought it was well past our wake up time. But no, it was bright, it was hot, and it was still an ungodly hour in the morning. We were right on schedule then, heading for the Carrara Markets which open at 0600.

Since the Markets open so early, we couldn't believe that the 1st bus there only started running at 0800. Our concierge told us to wait at the Marriott, the Marriott told us to wait at the ANA, the ANA gave us a bus schedule that confirmed in black-and-white that our pickup was indeed at 0808. We had plenty of time for breakfast and a short stroll along the beach to marvel at the surf.

Pancakes at the Platinum Cafe, a 24 hour place and one of the few eateries that served breakfast this early in the morning. Perhaps we should have been more specific with our order. Instead of getting breakfast pancakes, we got pancakes (good), syrup (ok), butter (fine) and chocolate sauce and ice-cream on top (arrgh!). They did serve a good coffee, though.

Bus came more or less on time. $1 return per pax, nice! Carrara Markets is wonderful for bargains. I expected fruit and veggies, but there was a lot more! Fresh produce from the local farms were in abundance and smelled wonderful. But there were also jewellery, headgear, local arts and crafts, candy, collectibles, gardening stuff, pet stuff, Chinese massage, toys... and if it wasn't for the heat we would probably have spent the rest of the afternoon there too.

I bought a shark's tooth pendant for myself and June got one tiny tooth attached to a tiny surfboard to wear around her neck. The fresh peaches we bought are now chilling in the minibar. For brunch we had 2 meat pies -- one chunky steak and one chicken and vegetable. Hand-sized for convenience. The meat filling was really chunky. The pies were rough and satisfying, and went well with the lemonade that we shared.

Lots of cheap sunglasses on sale too. $10 each, $15 for polarized lenses, but I couldn't find a design I liked. Pity.

Came back to our hotel to nap in the early afternoon. As I sit here and write (at the moment I'm handwriting my blog in my pen-and-paper format) I can see dark clouds returning . Thought we'd seen the last of the bad weather but it may just have been a temporary respite. Hope this doesn't bode ill for tomorrow and Warner Bros. Movie World!

Now transcribing my notes back at the Platinum Cafe. Until next time!

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