A week in Sydney Australia

The adventure continues

A week in Sydney Australia

The last 2 years have stopped many opportunities for people to meet in person for conferences and professional development opportunities. In August I took time off to visit Edutech in Melbourne, which is a massive conference dedicated to oddly enough, education and technology. 

As an Adobe Education Leader, I was invited to the Adobe APAC Education Summit to present a workshop along with many other Adobe Education Leaders to the more than 4000 education folk who had signed up to participate in the event. 

Adobe Education Leaders with Dr Tim at the 2022 APAC Summit

This event along with Adobe Max are personally my 2 most anticipated technology events in the creative multimedia education space. What made this year even better was that we were meeting face-to-face with fellow education leaders who are to all of us, more than professional colleagues. We are friends. 

The embedded story below was created with one of the great multimedia journaling tools we use with students called Adobe Express Page. Take a look at a different way we can share a multimedia web journal story.

Adobe Sydney 2022

To keep things simple, I take recreation leave to attend these events and this allows me to visit family in Sydney, enjoying their company and the wonders that Sydney has to offer. 

It is still not South America, but I use the opportunity to pay close attention to my packing as I only carried an overnight bag with a 7 kg limit for the entire week which included my laptop and a cut down version of my AV studio. It also gave me a chance to try out the GOPRO 11 and I share photographs below. 

…and also a chance to be a bit silly.

For those of you from Sydney or who often visit Sydney, the following may be a little bit boring. I got off the plane in Sydney at 7 AM and made my way to the train station which was a short walk away from my arrival gate. My brother was dropping an old friend of add a suburb near the airport, and we had arranged to meet in the suburb where he was to be dropped off. As I had time to spare, and just a small backpack, I planned to take the train into Circular Quay, which offers a wonderful view of the harbour, including the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge, Luna Park and the opera house with the city skyscrapers as a backdrop. I would grab a coffee, take a look around and then make my way out to our predetermined meeting point. What I immediately found to be super cool was that I could use my credit card, phone or watch to tap on (buy a ticket) without the need to purchase an opal card. Not only that, but the price for each ride was also ridiculously cheap.  

After coffee and some eyeball rejuvenating scenery, which I captured on the camera, I felt confident enough to visit the sunken gardens on Oxford Street which are located right next to Victoria barracks, a location where in a previous life I had conducted the Victoria barracks guard as a young officer. 

These sunken gardens are located in the remains of Sydney’s first water reservoir. The brick structure with curved ceilings and pillars provides a wonderful historic framework and backdrop against which the gardens were established. As I didn’t know the name of the gardens I was able to offer a sensible word suggestion to Google which provided me with the correct name and then it was a quick task on Google Maps to find when the next form of public transport was leaving for that location. 

After a walk through the gardens and past the barracks reliving very old memories, it was back on the bus and off to Marrickville. The shopping centre there gave me the opportunity to secure something dear to the heart of my great-niece, a unicorn. 

Family is family and I know some are reading this blog post. Unlike the Kardashians we keep a lot of that private. I can report though, throughout my time there we had great fun, and laughter, and it was so nice to catch up after not having the opportunity for a couple of years.  

Animals play a crucial part in the life of our Sydney family. I’m not just talking about unicorns. The very next morning, we were out along the banks of the Hawkesbury River with fellow animal lovers taking their dogs for a morning walk. It was impressive to see dogs of all sizes large and small, enjoying each other’s company. 


The site we were walking along had been totally underwater. Not once but twice in the last 12 months with the expectation that it could happen again before Christmas. When you look down at the current normal levels of the river and the fact that it was lapping at the first-floor floorboards of the White House in the picture, I imagine you, like me would be amazed and shocked at the amount of water that gathered during these 2 flood events. 


The next day we took a trip up to a town called Bathurst which has a car racing circuit called the Mount panorama circuit. 6.213 km in length. It has 2 straights with the longest being the conrod straight. We did 2 “hot laps” well below the speed limit as the police were quietly on standby to control any people with delusions of emulating the race car drivers of the Bathurst 1000. A famous car race held in early October. The fastest lap recorded for the circuit is 2 minutes. Given the climb up to the top of the mountain and the curves on the track. I think that’s amazing. 


The other thing that was impressive was the volume of the frogs residing in the small pond at the top of the mountain. Although on race day I’m sure that sound would be drowned out, on a quiet prerace day their volume sounded like an engine. 

On the way to Bathurst we passed through Lithgow which had a couple of nice art installations in the main street. One being butterflies, the other being cuckoo clocks. Lithgow is also birthplace to a famous Olympic runner, Marjorie Jackson, who won 2 Olympic gold medals and became known as the Lithgow flash as she was brought up in Lithgow. She was in fact born in Coffs Harbour. 

On our way back we stopped in at Bilpin an apple growing region just outside of Sydney where we picked out a nice apple pie for desert. 

The next morning after again walking the dogs along the banks of the Hawkesbury and this time with less fog around we were able to actually see the river, we packed our things as I needed to head into town to join the Adobe conference in Darling Harbour. 

We had the morning to wander through the rocks area of Sydney and then made our way around to the botanic Gardens via the opera house. We took a quick look inside the state library which is an old grand building that I recommend you visit. At the entrance to the library is a very large old map of Australia created in tiles on the floor. 

After that. Lunch at a wonderful Thai restaurant and we parted ways, as I made my way down to Darling Harbour to check in at the Sofitel hotel. That evening we had our initial meet and greet before the formality of the conference started the next day. 

I won’t talk much about the conference here but links to key presentations can be found here. 

I had an unexpected and wonderful evening wandering North Sydney with a fellow education leader after the conference had concluded. 

Here I share some of the pictures of our walk from North Sydney’s Greenwood hotel down the Lavender Bay stairs to Lavender Bay and then around 2 Luna Park under the Sydney Harbour Bridge before heading back up into North Sydney. Doing this at night and taking some night shots with the GOPRO, including a night lapse gave me some interesting photographs which I share here. 

The next day was another journey on the great public transport where we had a relaxing final day in Sydney enjoying an encounter with a friendly king parrot, a cautious cat, a hungry horse and affectionate dogs. Taronga Park zoo didn’t need to be on the agenda as I had a menagerie of friendly animals to keep me entertained. 

For my trip to the airport. I tried out the new Metro with its driverless trains which connected with the existing train service which took me direct to the airport without any fuss whatsoever. 

Unfortunately, after I boarded my aircraft, someone did cause some fuss and was removed from the aircraft before our door shut and I headed back to Darwin, and oddly enough a day full of rain which on 1 October is quite unusual. 

On one of the evenings. I did follow my group of friends through the streets of Sydney. I was chatting to someone and failed to notice that we turned off the main road and down an alley and then another back alley, which was clearly a place where rubbish tins and back entrances to buildings were. Light was minimal and everything was that wet black-grey of a dingy dark alley. In the corner of this alley were a couple of stanchions and red velvet ropes and a security guy. We went past the security guy down some stairs with minimal light and then opened the door onto one of the most famous whiskey bar joints in Sydney, The Baxter Inn. The Baxter Inn — The Whisky List 

Not a place that I would seek out, but once introduced, it certainly had a vibe about it. That was worth experiencing. A whiskey connoisseur’s dream, I didn’t want to risk asking for a lemon lime and bitters so stayed for some conversation and then headed back for some night photography then sleep.  

As I was writing this, I was thinking about other events. I really look forward to in the technology space. The Livecode developer conference is one, as is the annual main announcement of Apple technology followed to a lesser extent by GOPRO technology announcements and the annual release of TechSmith products. I just thought I needed to add that roundup so that folks didn’t think that I was a one-eyed Adobe supporter. What it clearly shows is my calendar is filled with primarily nerdy events. 

A couple of weeks back in Darwin then down to Melbourne for a week and then off to South America.


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