Manly wharf

Well… breakfast came well and truly second to a lie in. At 7.30am only Mr Thomas and myself are down for bacon, poached eggs, muffin, toast and fruit.


I needed breakfast to help me warm up because overnight it had been absolutely freezing. A lovely day in Sydney is generally followed by a cold night and last night had been no exception. When we were in hotels, the heating and air conditioning systems kept you warm or cool as appropriate. In keeping with many of the residences, the Collaroy doesn’t have any heating and it was certainly a shock to the system.


At 9.45am, all are up and at the morning briefing. The plan is for us to head towards Manly Wharf where we set up a central meeting place where there will be a member of staff on duty during the day.


The students have a number of options;
1. Catch a ferry to Dalling harbour or Circular Quay
2. Stay on the beaches around the wharf which are more golden sands similar to all the others we have seen in northern Sydney.
3. Stay in the Manly area itself with its proliferation of shops and restaurants.


A group decide to take on the challenge of walking across the top of the Sydney harbour bridge. The intrepid group of Freya Fleming, Millie Steadman, Ethan Harris, Ben Brown and Sam Hughes are accompanied by the fearless Miss Smitham and Mr Lewis. As you can imagine, I have no intention of leaving terra firma.


All but the bridge walkers, who can’t start their walk until mid-afternoon, are back at the Wharf by 4.45pm. Timekeeping continues to, by and large. be excellent and we are on the buses and travelling back by just before 5pm.


As well as the suggested activities a large group of boys had gone sea kayaking. They really enjoyed it and it was quite arduous-Max Treharne couldn’t repeat his heroics on the rugby pitch and ended up ‘grounding’ on the rocks.
I heard a helicopter flying overhead mid-afternoon, and I have to admit that my heart missed a beat (or two), but they all returned safely.


There were two aquariums to visit one in Manly and one in Dalling harbour and some of our party visited one or the other.


A group of girls hired bikes and cycled up and down the front for a couple of hours.


The weather was warm and dry and it was another relaxing day.


We are back at the centre by 5.30pm and en route pass the Manly Sea-Eagles rugby league ground in Brook Vale, it is relatively close to the Collaroy centre and we should be able to get there easily tomorrow afternoon to watch a rugby league game if we wish to do so.


Back at the centre, we have our evening meal of lamb and roasted vegetables and chocolate sponge and caramel sauce all very tasty and then go for a briefing before Mr Thomas considers the Donkey of the day contenders. As usual, the group has been on top form and it’s probably easier to name those not nominated than those who were. In the end the main protagonists were;

Charlie Baker who couldn’t understand “Why the penguins don’t fly out of the enclosure?” Someone told her the reason was because they liked having the free fish.

Tiffany Thomas turned a few heads when she asked “What’s an aquarium?”
Someone explained that it was a building in which tanks containing a variety of fish are kept.
Sean Collins asked “Are there any flamingos in an aquarium?”

You may smile at home, but think kindly about those poor teachers who are charged with the responsibility of getting these young people through their exams-it is a heavy burden to bear!

Max Treharne was nominated for grounding his sea kayak an act that nearly led to the scrambling of Air/Sea rescue as well as having the potential to give Mr Mason heart failure.

Mr Thomas bought some joke sweets with a variety of nice and horrible flavours. He gave one to Ehsan Yadollahi who swallowed it whole. “Did you have a horrible or nice one Ehsan?”
“I don’t know, i thought you were meant to swallow it whole.”

Mr Thomas also gave one to Lewis Hyatt-he had the ‘vomit’ flavoured one and enjoyed it. Well there’s certainly no accounting for taste. Lewis wasn’t content with that but also asked “In rugby leagues do you needs arms?” “Only if you want to catch the ball” someone told him. His piece de resistance came when he asked, “Is it called a rare steak because it’s difficult to find?”

Sam ‘Romeo’ Nicholson was not going to be outshone by the Bondi beach chatting up of Joe ‘Casanova’ Bright yesterday.

He saw a ‘hot’ young lady walking along the promenade and started to follow her, only to walk straight into a cyclist knocking him off his bike. I’m sure that that’s the way to make a lasting impression if not a favourable one.

When the votes were counted it was another tight run race with Sam ‘Romeo’ Nicholson’s 27 votes just pipped by Lewis Hyatt’s 28.


We move to the Auditorium, where we show some videos from tour including the jet-boating. We also prepare for the ‘whole school’ assembly in Mater Maria on Monday when our captains are all to say a few words each and we are to sing the National Anthem. We ask Trystan Williams to give us a rendition-it is fantastic and I am still tingling minutes afterwards. We decide that there can be no better way to represent us than for Trystan to sing the verse and for all of us to sing the chorus.


We sing a few other songs including ones from the Red hot Chilli Peppers and Journey and then go for supper at 9pm.


As we leave, four of the group arrive who have been ‘awol’, it has caused real consternation and a concern that they were off site and in potential danger. There return is a relief, and an examination of the details reveals that they had been innocently chatting with a friend they had met when Mater Maria had toured Wales two years ago. However, the fact that we didn’t know that, had caused a lot of concern to us and that was not acceptable. We will consider what actions need to be taken tomorrow having had time to reflect upon it.


We finish the evening with a briefing at 10.45pm when we set out a variety of options we hope to do tomorrow;
1. Kayaking on Lake Narrabeen
2. Shopping in the Sunday market in the ‘Rocks’ area of Sydney
3. Viewing Sydney by walking up the pylons in the Sydney harbour bridge
4. Watching the Manly Sea Eagles v Newcastle Knights rugby league game.

It promises to be a busy day and all are in their rooms by 11pm with the option of breakfast at 7.30 am or a lie in until 9.45am.

Featured Gallery

Featured Gallery

Comments ( 4 )
  1. Cath Simons

    Thank you so much for the witty blogs. A great read for us back home! Am loving the donkey of the day section! Thanks to the whole teaching crew looking after our little blighters and for giving them a tour and memories the will never forget. #teamgowerton

  2. Laurie Higgs

    Many, many thanks to the staff for what is effectively real time reporting of the success of the tour. Not only leading the group, looking after their needs and coping with the occasional difficulty but spending time and effort to keep us all informed. The information has been viewed by Miriam’s grandparents in Cornwall this week and has been a great source of pleasure for them to see what is going on 11,000 miles away.

    Jane and Laurie Higgs

  3. Kelly collins

    God love these write ups……laughing out loud……are there any flamingos in an aquarium…….really Sean???

  4. Schwartz Family

    We had the absolute pleasure of hosting Olly and Trystan for two nights in Melbourne. Great boys, excellent guests and only sorry it was so short. We are reading this blog with such interest. Very amusing. Donkey of the Day leaves us shaking our heads (while smiling) – the teenage brain is an international problem. Hope you videoed (our) Trystan singing the anthem and post it. Good luck with the rest of the tour, keep the posts coming and travel safely.
    From Henry, Bob, Anna, Tim and Sally Schwartz

Post comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© Gowerton School: Powered by just 2 easy & Hwb