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|| News Item: Posted 1998-12-13

Observations From Sydney, Australia
(where I am currently on assignment)

By Robert Hanashiro

- Steaks are better at the Outback Steakhouse...

- I haven't had better Asian food anywhere.

- The expression "ball on bat" has a whole new meaning here.

- It's interesting to see that replay controversies aren't just limited to America and the NFL...headlines in the local papers today concern a replay call during a local cricket match.

- At least the Australia professional basketball league, the NBL, IS playing.

- It's nice to spend a week NOT reading about Randy Johnson, Mo Vaughn, Kevin Brown or some other baseball player getting an $80 million contract...

- But I am tired of reading about two Aussie cricket players who took an $18,000 bribe from some Indian bookies.

- The Olympic Park, located in Sydney suburb Homebush Bay, will be a first: a central location with 8 venues within walking distance of the Main Press Center...

- But how easy will it be to negotiate the walk to the Aquatics Center with a backpack full of gear and about 500,000 other people milling about (OCA's estimate of the crowds anticipated each day of the Olympics)?

- I've never seen cabs like the ones in Sydney: the driver's seats are enclosed in a bulletproof plexiglass shell... it looks like something out of a sci-fi movie like "Aliens" or "Blade Runner". I guess it's for protection of the drivers, but try to understand them when they try to tell you the fare (if they speak English).

- On the other hand, Sydney is an easy city to walk around, but not in the Kings Cross section! I haven't seen street barkers like these since the good old days of San Francisco in the late 60's-early 70's.

- The expression "dry as a bone" here is "Drizabone" and refers to a brand of "duster" over coat.

- And finally...why is it when you visit the famous Bondi Beach, the women who are sunbathing with their tops off, are the ones you wouldn't look at even with their tops on?

If you're coming here for the 2000 Summer Olympic Game (Sept. 15 - Oct. 1, 2000) you're in for a real treat and a good time.

G'day (couldn't resist)!

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