"Canberra, why wait for death?"

Trip Start Aug 17, 2004
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Trip End Aug 16, 2005


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Flag of Australia  ,
Sunday, January 9, 2005

Canberra! Not everybody's favourite place. Bill Bryson, while watching a promotional video called "Canberra, it's got it all", renamed it "Canberra, why wait for death?" It is pretty weird, like Washington DC meets Milton Keynes. There is that strange sense of history having been created on a big flip chart and then turned into a real life city over a weekend. They went for a sense of grandeur which translates as having to get a bus from one building to the next because they are so far apart. But, we must remind you again, this is Australia so the bus driver just takes you where you want to go, bus stop or no bus stop, having had a long chat about where it is exactly you are heading. And they have things like Jazz in the Park - who'd have thought it - Australia - they'll be drinking wine next!

After one night of luxury we moved to a campsite outside the city and got stuck visiting Canberra's museums for days; they're marvellous. A combination of being fun, thought provoking and sometimes very moving. The playing of the Last Post at the close of the National War Memorial Museum had me going.

A great place to visit, but somewhere I'd definitely think twice about living, jazz in the park or not.
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