Truthbutter

Pigeons and a paleo café

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Not “Sydney, day four.” I’m improving.

I got up early again, and had a nice (albeit cold) morning on the front porch catching up on blog posts.

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Then I forced the sluggish stove to yield to my will and actually managed to make crispy (rather than soggy) hash browns, along with scrambled eggs with cheese and greek yogurt with canned peaches. I’m not sure we have greek yogurt this good in the US, but maybe I haven’t looked hard enough.

Yogurt ingredients: whole milk, cream, live cultures. SO TASTY

Yogurt ingredients: whole milk, cream, and live cultures. SO TASTY

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This was so good. I just had to take a picture.

I went into the city again to set up my bank account, which was pretty easy.

First Australian money!

First Australian money! Yes, that’s a clear plastic window in the bill. Crazy.

Then I pulled up the list of paleo cafes that Alyssa had given me the day before and spent quite awhile searching for a café called Thr1ve, which was supposedly in Sydney CBD. Since I couldn’t find it, I got some gluten-free lasagna at a place Hannah and I had passed yesterday. It was a bit unsatisfying because it was also vegan, so it was basically just rice lasagna noodles with lots of carrots and some kind of curry sauce, but it was still tasty. I even ate some of the salad it came with, believe it or not! I think my small intestine is becoming resigned to the idea of raw vegetables.

Gluten free, vegan lasagna and salad

Gluten free, vegan lasagna and salad

I ate outside on some steps, and there were pigeons everywhere (of course). New favorite lunchtime activity: watching pigeons climb stairs. Or descend them; both directions are equally entertaining. It was also entertaining to see that every single person walking past me was carrying a box of Kellog’s cereal. There were some company reps giving them out in the street, and I guess a free box of cereal is just too good an offer for anyone to turn down!

After I finished lunch, I started walking again and almost immediately found the Thr1ve café I had been looking for. Figures. I was pretty bummed I wasn’t hungry enough to have a second lunch, because their food sounded amazing, and it was all gluten free, refined sugar free, yada yada. They were even selling copies of The Primal Blueprint and Primal Cravings, and they had a poster of Darryl Edwards sitting on the counter. I met him at AHS last year, and I was definitely not expecting to see him featured in a café in Sydney, Australia! Weird, and cool. Also, one of the cashiers looked like the guy from 27 Dresses. That wasn’t awful.

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I decided I had enough room in my stomach for a smoothie, and let me just tell you for a minute about their smoothie offerings. They had a few pre-set smoothies you could order, but they also had a list of ingredients that you could mix and match to make your own smoothie, and the two add-ins that astounded me the most were potato starch and MCT oil. I kind of did a double take, because my (mostly) online ancestral health world and my real-life travel world suddenly collided into one world full of resistant starch on a café menu in Sydney CBD.

The surprising smoothie offerings. Also notice the A2 milk

The surprising smoothie offerings. Also notice the A2 milk

I can only figure that the potato starch was offered as a source of resistant starch, and I really didn’t think that paleo trend had even made it that big on the internet, much less out into the real world! Mark Sisson has talked about it on his blog, though, so maybe this café just picked up on that. Crazy, though. Same thing with the MCT oil. I bet they serve bulletproof coffee in the morning.

I ordered a “cookies & cream” smoothie with full cream A2 milk (yup) as the base. The menu said it had coconut cream, cacao nibs, coconut shreds, and paleo brownie (!!) in it, so I was pretty excited.

Cookies & cream paleo shake

Cookies & cream paleo shake

Verdict: I was definitely expecting more from this smoothie. It was tasty, but I couldn’t tell there was any sort of brownie in it, and the texture was just sort of liquidy with lots of hard, crunchy bits in it (I’m assuming the cacao nibs and coconut shreds). But when I’m back in Sydney in November I’m definitely going back there and ordering an actual lunch!

After that I walked in the general direction of the botanical gardens and the circular quay, but I got a little lost and I think I may have missed the most scenic parts. My phone also died, so I couldn’t take pictures anymore. It was definitely still pretty, though.

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But it was a lot of walking, and I was definitely ready to get home once I finally made it back to the bus stop. I managed to catch the bus, get off at the right stop, and walk the rest of the way home without getting lost, so I was quite proud of myself. Unfortunately nobody was home to share in my success, so I just had to enjoy the feeling of knowing my way around part of Sydney by myself.

When Hannah got home from work, I told her about the Paleo café, and she was pretty excited about it. She said she’d scout it out for me, and then we could go back in November. She’s also a fan of the guy from 27 Dresses.

I was spoiled for dinner, because Buz made Pumpkin Laksa, which was a Thai soup with butternut squash (pumpkin), broccoli, laksa paste, coconut milk, and rice or mung bean vermicelli noodles, garnished with chiles and green onions. Not sure how thrilled my gut was about the mung bean noodles and the chiles, but my taste buds were sure happy!

Beautiful and tasty! Homemade, and I didn't have to cook it :)

Beautiful and tasty! Homemade, and I didn’t have to cook it :)

It was a really nice way to end my time in Sydney, huddled on the couch with the girls in our pajamas and coats with hot bowls of soup. We talked about gun laws in Australia vs. the US, Aboriginal culture, and other things that were just really interesting to hear about from an Australian perspective.

Cleaning up after dinner

Cleaning up after dinner: Hannah (Hash), Buz, and Hannah (Hanjoy)

Buz was nice enough to drive me to the airport this morning, and now I’m on the plane to Perth. I was a little sad to leave; I could tell that Hannah and I (and probably Alyssa, too) would be good friends if we spent more time together, and I was amazed that out of the people I met during my short time in Sydney, two of them would have such similar interests, experiences, and personalities to me. Considering how unique my interests and experiences are, that doesn’t happen very often! But it was a privilege to spend with them (and everyone else, for that matter) and live with them for a few days, and I hope I have such luck with meeting awesome people in Perth!

So long for now, Sydney. Western Australia, I’m coming for you.

One Thought on “Pigeons and a paleo café

  1. karen on July 9, 2014 at 11:02 am said:

    So glad you made it there safe…love the pic’s….Enjoy….

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