Day 140 - Botanical Garden

Caffe E Torta
August 25th, 2015

“Tā shì zhēn tā mā dē hēn hǎo” I say to Sunny over her shoulder in reference to her cooking. That’s not proper grammar, I probably should have said “zhe” instead of “tā shì” but the message was clear enough. She thanked me because what I said is very casual, and something you shouldn’t say in front of coworkers, strangers, or relatives. Basically “That is really mother f*cking good!” which Shimou had taught me when I wanted to simply say “The weather is nice.” Now I use it all the time because it’s hilariously over the top.

Luke, Sunny, and I eat while Shimou is getting ready elsewhere. Curry, rice, and fried beef with green beans and potatoes. Strange breakfast, but I guess it is lunchtime. The plan is loose today, supposedly checking out the Royal Botanical Gardens. But first, Café of the day!

Sensory Lab!
Today’s Cafe was supposed to be Sensory Lab, but google maps was leading us in circles. We settled on A random cafes nearby and were rather disappointed with it. Caffe E Torta, it was called. The seating inside looked nice, but we were placed outside to gaze upon the people walking by the small indoor-ish mall. 

The definition of each drink is seems to vary from cafe to cafe. Here, a mocha is a latte with cocoa sprinkled on top, which might be called a cappuccino at another cafe (which would be called a latte in Canada). Luke and I talk about cultural differences between Canada/Australia and China. I suggested that the history they’re taught in school might not be 100% accurate with world events, particularly when it comes to the relationship between Japan and China. I’ve spoken on this with several people from both countries, and each country seems to think the other did terrible things, while they were innocent of any wrong doing. Both. I suggest that it’s somewhere in the middle, but Luke doesn’t agree. That’s cool, I’m largely ignorant on the matter, so I can’t really argue it. It seems like most countries do that with their histories, and China has a very long history to play with. 

A Pond
I bring up that China recently devalued the Yuan, and that they claim a 7% growth in their economy each year. Western experts' claims go from the very bad (2-3%) up to closer to their claims (5-6%), but none of them agree with the official numbers. The actions their government has taken seem to indicate that it’s not in that good of shape. Who knows? Again, not going could turn out in my favour. I ask what will happen to China when manufacturing technology becomes competitive with cheap labour. I don’t think the answer is clear, other than “it won’t be good.” I don’t understand macro economics (it’s been said that no one really does), but I’m starting to think about how that’ll affect the world economy.

A climbings statue made for children.
I think it's a dragon.
On our way out of the cafe, I spot a familiar looking location. Why is it familiar? Because I saw it from the picture on google maps of what Sensory Lab looks like. We stopped in, took some photos, and took a latte away. I’ve been using the Swarm app after giving up on Foursquare years back when they tried to make the move. Swarm is basically what Foursquare used to be - check in locations and compete for “Mayor” of each spot. They’ve added in the function of more in-depth reviews in an attempt to compete with Urban Spoon, so I read. I mention this because the advice on Sensory Lab was “Hipster factor thru the roof. Only go here to be seen. Not an enjoyable place to be.” I can’t say I agree, but hey, maybe I’ve been brought into the fold. Look at me!

We hike back to Flinders Street, cross the bridge, and check out the garden. It’s not very impressive, but that’s mainly because it’s the height of winter. We snap some pics doing silly things, I do a weird dance (Again, “You should be an actor” Luke says) and call it a day. Luke heads home while Shimou and I go to the State Library to do more work. Man, I love working in that place. While in the library, I look up the Royal Botanical Garden to be sure that it was, in fact, the place we went. It was… but we had only seen about 1/8 of the garden, the vast majority of it being a 10 minute walk from where we had stopped. Looks like we’ll have to revisit.

After several hours at the library, we gather our things, stop at Coles to buy some cheap chicken ($3 for 5 drum sticks!), and rail it home. Shimou spice and stuck the chicken in the oven while I relaxed. It may seem like I’m particularly lazy, but to be fair, she was relaxing while I worked in the library. Then again my blog does less for her than her cooking does for me. She does read it, though. Hello, Shimou!

Skyline from the Park
She hasn’t seen many western films, and seems to like dramatic music, so why not show her the Huge JackedMan version of Les Miserables? The version with subtitles took much longer, and would have substantially helped to reduce the amount of explaining I’d have to do. Then again, I enjoy explaining things when people actually want to hear it.

Editing Music: The Boxer Cover - The Brewer Boys

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