We are having breakfast at Charlie’s Foodamalloo, across the street from our hotel; the Ovolo. It’s a wonderful greasy spoon and reputed to be one of the best places for breakfast in Sydney – if you don’t mind the simple interior and the washed but stickily-aged wood and tiled tables.
The Ovolo is located on the redeveloped old giant wharf at Woolloomooloo. The beloved old cargo and passenger quayside is now home to twelve restaurants and Russell Crow’s luxury boat… and, it is rumoured, his penthouse, high above the dock.
There’s a man. He is noisily on his mobile and standing, partly blocking my view through the opened shuttered window. He looks very at home here but is not Australian. He sounds… perhaps Austrian?
Another man comes in, an Australian with a broad and deep accent. He walks past the two young naval officers putting their caps on, post breakfast. There is a large naval base along the quay. Yesterday, I’d taken several shots of a gleaming new warship before I got to the sign that said don’t.
The two men greet each other by swinging their hands together in a well-practised gesture. It produces a crack so intense that the two naval officers turn in alarm.
One of the men gets up to reassure the uniformed men, smiling. Their conversation turns to tobacco… interesting.
Bernie is having tea with her breakfast. The lovely Turkish lady who brought me my BLT tips over Bernie’s little steel milk jug. It goes all over my backpack on the floor. The young Turkish lady is mortified. She mops it up carefully with a cloth, then brings a mop and bucket to sort out the floor. I had no idea the little jugs held so much milk… She offers me a cloth Aldi bag in compensation. I reassure her that it’s okay…
There’s something weird in the Sydney air…
We’re staying at the Ovolo but breakfasting at Charlie’s. It’s much more interesting.
I hope it won’t rain all day… we can get this in Cumbria.
(Editor’s note: it did)