Day One in Australia

It’s not a short flight from San Francisco to Sydney – about 14 hours. But I did get to watch Lawrence of Arabia, one of my all-time favorite films. Then I watched And When Did You Last See Your Father?. I wept at the end of that one, which is my wont on flights. In fact, I’ve cried more on airplanes than anywhere else.

It wasn’t that big of a deal on the Qantas flight to Sydney, since it was dark and no one was seated next to me. The flight from MSP to SFO was a different story. Bright as day and seated between two guys about my age reading business magazines, I read the last two chapters of Father Joe: The Man Who Saved My Soul and wept like a baby. That is a beautiful book of faith found, lost, and refound, written by Tony Hendra (who played Ian Faith in This Is Spinal Tap). I highly recommend it.

I arrived in Sydney at 6am and was retrieved at the airport by a long-time friend, Fuzz Kitto. I’m staying with Fuzz and Carolyn in Sydney, and their house is a bustle of activity with several young women living there now. The vibe there reminds me of Tom and Christine Sine’s Mustard Seed House in Seattle. The Kittos, of course, know the Sines and just about everyone else I know around the globe.

Since I refuse to use neck pillows, I didn’t sleep much on the plane and got pretty tired as the day wore on.  I spoke at a “book launch” for The New Christians at noon, then had a great time on a radio show for the Australian Broadcasting Network that will be aired on Sunday night.  In between, Carolyn took me to Coogee Beach for a Chardonnay.  That evening, we met with a dozen emergent church types for an incredible meal cooked by Fuzz that included the best pumpkin soup I’ve ever tasted.

I fell asleep in Carolyn’s car on the way back to the Kittos, and crashed hard when I saw the bed.

All in all, a great first day with many good connections.  And Sydney is a breathtaking city.

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  • Did you get to read Bryson’s “Down under”? A must read for anyone on their first trip there.

  • I’ve heard of ‘Father Joe,’ but thanks to your Spinal Tap reference, it is now on the way. There’s just the issue of the cover…

  • Tony, glad you enjoyed Sydney and hope you have an enjoyable time in Australia. I blogged on last night over at and will be interested to here how everything else goes. Cheers, Matt.

  • Glad you are enjoying the the trip to Australia. I’ll have to check out that book… I’m always up for a good cry 🙂