All Under The Place, 5 September, The Blue Mountains

Had 2 lovely days off in Perth, even if most of it was spent in the hotel lobby drinking up the free wifi (Australians have an outstanding quality of life in many respects, but once you’re out of the cities their Internet access under performs as badly as their current sportsmen). Spent another day flying back across the entire continent to Sydney, and then driving up into the nearby Blue Mountains.

Surprisingly, for a country fond of the literal naming of things (see “The Great Sandy Desert” and the “Powerful Owl”), the Blue Mountains aren’t blue. As we saw this morning, the name actually comes from the slight blue haze in the air above the trees, created by the eucalyptus gum evaporating into the air. I was prepared to be a bit underwhelmed by the place, as a few Sydney dwellers I’d met were a bit sarcastic when I mentioned we were heading here. However, the crew and I were pretty impressed. We took the Skyway cable car across a ravine, and travelled halfway down the valley on the Scenic Railway (officially the steepest railway in the world), and never ceased nodding in appreciation at the tree lined expanse below us.

Having indulged in some rather unsuccessful on camera bird watching, we headed into the nearby town of Leura to meet Maurice. He’s a teapot collector with over 3,000 teapots, and after perusing his collection/gift shop/tea rooms he observed and marked our tea drinking skills and then stood looking slightly bewildered as Cel and I launched into a parody of the TV dating show ‘Take Me Out’ called ‘Take Me Spout’. Cel did a sterling job as Paddy McGuiness and set me up on a date with a lovely 1950s coronation bone china teapot.

I wonder what our contributors say to people after we’ve finished subjecting them to this nonsense?

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