I didn’t think it was possible, but the weather for my second day in Sydney was worse than my first day. On Saturday, there was either torrential rain or howling winds, but not both at the same time. But apparently Saturday was just the warm-up act for Sunday, where Mother Nature decided to unleash everything she had on this city.
When I heard that the weather forecast, I decided that I’d spend the morning at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, which would keep me out of the weather. Sure, it was a fifteen minute walk, but I figured with my new waterproof shoes (purchased so I could walk during Saturday’s rain) and my waterproof hoodie, I could survive a fifteen minute walk.
Here’s what I didn’t count on.
First, waterproof shoes don’t help when you have to walk through standing water that goes over your ankles, like I had to here:
Second, I learned that my waterproof hoodie does not have waterproof zippers. I had a nice wet line along my shirt, and the things in my zip-pockets that I thought would stay dry (like my passport!) all got damp.
The rain was so intense that I stopped halfway through my walk to the art gallery to take shelter in St. Mary’s Cathedral and dry out a bit. I felt like a medieval traveller seeking sanctuary.
By the time I made it to the gallery, my fingertips were starting to wrinkle, like I’d spent too long in the bathtub. The inside of the gallery was not immune to the weather, either. Leaky ceilings forced the curators to remove several paintings from the wall to prevent damage. (The wall in the next picture is not supposed to be empty!) Now that I think about it, almost every building I was in on Sunday had buckets set up to catch leaks from the ceiling (St. Mary’s Cathedral, the Art Gallery of NSW, and the State Library).
All told, the Sydney airport got 6 inches of rain this weekend. Other parts of town got even more. I guess winter isn’t the best time to visit…