The reason we decided to travel to Australia this summer was because of the nice invitation from our friend Jo to stay in a cabin at her Mom’s house outside of Sydney. Jo is my friend from the Ojai masters swim program. She then creatively thought about inviting more of the swimmers to a “Pool & Pub” tour. I couldn’t believe that six other people decided to join this crazy adventure. I didn’t really think we were going to be swimming that much, but boy was I wrong. We swam practically every day, from the Swimming Centre in Bowral and the Oasis YMCA in South Windsor, to the Nepean Aquatic Centre and the North Sydney Olympic Pool. We also traveled to some mighty cool pubs, including the oldest pub in Sydney, the Fortune Of War, and the oldest Irish pub, The Mercantile, as well as the historic Boiler House at the iconic Hydro Majestic in the Blue Mountains and the Briars Country Lodge and Historic Inn. We also managed to visit the Two Figs Winerey in Berry and Tertini Wines in Mittagong, as well as the Eden Brewery. We had a nice little van that we called the “White Wombat” that could fit all 9 of us and our luggage and we hit the road. We traveled not only to Sydney and explored the Blue Mountains, but also took a road trip to the Wombeyan Caves, where I was able to mountain bike alongside a mob of kangaroos, to the beach of Bendalong, where we experienced an epic sausage sizzle. We were amazed with Jo and her families hospitality and the crazy wild parrots, that were everywhere. While we still managed to hit the main tourist sights that were truly impressive, I think the highlight was having a local show us the ins and outs of where she grew up that was so special.