Life in Sydney
- some personal impressions -
Hugo & Freida van Staden

Bushfires - 2001/2002

Sydney is beautiful. The harbour is spectacular. Sydney is vast.

Sydney Harbour Bridge                       

                     View Sydney Harbour Bridge   

Arial views of Sydney Harbour and the bridge

We  lived in Sydney from November 1997 to end June 2003.

On the 2nd of July 2003 we relocated to Albury.

We were both born in South Africa, lived in Johannesburg for many years and had a beautiful farm in the Western Transvaal, Groot Marico.


For those of you who haven't been to Sydney, to give you an idea of distance, travelling between the CBD and the north shore is like travelling from Johannesburg to Pretoria. On a good day it can take about 30 minutes. In heavy traffic it can take between an hour and an hour and a half.

Sometimes, it can be a  mission to travel over  the harbour bridge or under the tunnel to get to the city from the north shore or vica versa, especially when there is something like a 'footy' (rugby league) match.
When you feel as though you are travelling north on the Ben Schoeman Highway towards Pretoria and you are actuallly travelling South towards the city in Sydney, then you realise that you have a severe orientation problem. Never mind it really does get better.

The rail service to and from the city is very good. Living near a railway line or a bus service is a definite advantage although it can be time consuming and we all know that 'it' is of the essence. Reminds me of the times when I actually spent afternoons with my friends having tea and baby sitting. Gosh, am I dreaming?

Back to reality - we lived on the north shore, in a town house, in a suburb called Marsfield, also known as  'Marsdorp' - just kidding.

The cost of housing in Sydney is very high. The nearer you live to the city, the more expensive  accomodation becomes. It is not unusual to pay between half a million and a million dollars for houses in Sydney. Try translating that into Rands. (Clue - times by aproximately four and don't faint)
Renting in Sydney obviously varies depending on the type of accomodation. However renting a modest 3 bedroomed house on the north shore can cost between $400 to $550 a week. Please bear in mind that this is only a rough guide and will obviously vary.
Roughly, a further $1000 to $1500 a month is required for general living expenses. This is not necessarily taking insurance, education, and medical expenses into account. Once again, please bear in mind  that this also depends on your standard of living and will vary depending on the size and needs of each family. So remember that this is only a general guide.

The quality of life here though, is wonderful and we are privileged to be part of Australia and to be Australian Citizens.


A few Australian words


Botany Bay

My memories of landing in Sydney are seeing views like this one of Botany Bay  which is very close to Sydney's airport

Photographs by Skycam

'n  woord of twee van Hugo

The Sydney Opera House

Wel hier's ek weer met my rooi rok voor die deur, - hier in Oz, ons nuwe tuiste, 'ingesettel' soos hulle sÍ (se) - werk  verdien (kan meer wees) en geniet die skoonheid en vryheid van Sydney - dis net wragtig duur om hier te bestaan, maar ons weet vryheid en vrede meer werd is as geld en probeer maar aanpas so go moontlik, sonder verwyte.

The famous Sydney Opera House


Eerste indrukke?? Wel, dit lyk of die populÍrste (populerste) monument in Oz in die algemeen die waslyn is. Dit pryk altyd in die mees prominente plek in die tuin! In teendeel, die tuin, swembad en tennisbaan, word om die waslyn gebou! Die fladder van wasgoed lyk of dit die simbool van vryheid in Oz is. Dit kon miskien waar wees, want dit word nie gesteel nie!

      North Sydney

View of Sydney taken from the north side.


Dan is daar nog 'n ander instelling in Oz, om alles higenies te hou. As mens jou hond vir 'n uitstappie neem (dis orals) moet mens volgens wet, 'n plastiese sakkie en handgrafie byderhand hÍ (he), ingeval jou hondjie se magie wil werk. Daar is niemand hier om dit te verwyder as mens dit nie self doen nie. Daar is 'n $50 dollar boete as jy dit nie doen nie, (miskien baie meer.)

Andersins is daar nie veel meer om oor te bekommer nie, behalwe dat jou inkoms belasting 'n groot hap uit jou inkomste steel en mens moet jou maar daarby skik. Daar is geen alternatief nie. Die dinges van Transvaal om te betaal is hier sonder opsies en mens moet maar jou lewe daarvolgens skik.

Dan is dit ook kenmerkend dat die weer bureau hier soos die poletiek in S.A. is. As hulle sÍ (se) dit kom reen, skyn die son en vice-versa. Mens weet nooit wat die weer gaan doen nie!

Maar met sport en die kunste kan jy jou heeltemaal hier uitlewe. Inspirasie vir alles is daar as jy wil deelneem,

Dit vir nou is alles tot volgende keer. Laat ons van julle hoor in Afrikaans.

Mens smag om dit te dink en praat - vroeg of laat!

Bak staan!

(March 2000)
N.B. Some browsers do not support diacritics, i.e. the symbols that Afrikaans has for some vowels, like the kappie in se and more and the two dots in oe over the e. Therefore, I have repeated the word in brackets without these diacritics just in case.


Hier is 'n paar van Hugo se skeppings:
Hendrik en Mildred
Opsit kers


Aussie Links
The Bobby approved Australian Overview

Rugby Heaven



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