(YESTERDAY/TOMORROW/Everything Day Logs)

Heard "What's That Sound?" on the radio for the second time ever. About 6 p.m. went down to the Opera House, intending to walk east from there along the Harbor shore, to look at the 80 or so yachts and small boats anchored at Farm Cove. And there must be about 150 or more anchored at Athol Bay on the opposite side of the Harbor. These 2 spots are among the boating vantage points for seeing tomorrow night's fireworks, several tons of which are due to go off near the Harbor Bridge and the Opera House.

When I got to the Opera House, found that preparations for tomorrow night's outdoor concert were under way: there were 3 stages set up around it, and performers and technicians were rehearsing and doing soundchecks, watched by a couple of hundred people seated on the forecourt steps or just milling around. Groups of teens, couples, businessmen, families with small children, camera-toting tourists. A Japanese camera crew were checking out angles. The sight of all these people, along with the stages and the equipment, sound booths, speaker stacks, catering tents, technicians and a whole bunch of other whatnot in the middle of being put up against the backdrop of the Opera House, was an amazing sight.

And about a quarter of a mile beyond all this, to the east, across the water, were those anchored boats at Farm Cove. To the west was the Harbor Bridge with the word "Eternity" in lightbulbs, suspended from its peak. All this is gonna look awesome tomorrow night, specially with crowds of a few hundred thousand around; but seeing it today in daylight was the best, I thought. Rehearsals are more interesting to watch than the real thing. Tomorrow afternoon I might go back there and see what else there is.

It struck me that there haven't been any visible signs of Y2K panic in this city. Folks seem more interested in gearing up for partying; and practically every third person in the street is a tourist. Maybe because it's summer (and the sun sets around 8.30 p.m.). And it's 1999. And maybe because this New Year's Eve (and to a lesser extent last Sunday's Sydney-Hobart yacht race) seem to be part of the countdown to next year's Olympics here, the main event. So, could be that's why Sydney's residents feel licensed to go hedonistically crazy.

Derrick Carter and other international DJs are now in town to play various parties. I'd wanted to spend Christmas and New Year's in Hong Kong, but now I'm glad I'm here. 14 rolls of film to be developed (so far).

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