Thursday saw us driving to Katoomba in the Blue Mountains so that we could have a look at some of the rugged scenery in that area. We hadn’t been up that way for many years.

There is a lot of roadwork tailing place on the road up through all the Blue Mountain towns such as Blaxland, Springwood and on to Leura. This seems to be a pattern in the area as the old Hydro Majestic Hotel at Medlow Bath is also closed for repair and renovation. I can remember going into the lounge and looking through the windows across the magnificent valley. I remember that the floor levels went up and down like a roller coaster along the passage ways. Perhaps, just like the roadworks, they will now be straightened out and levelled.

The area at the lookout over the ‘Three Sisters’ rock outcrop has already been renovated and now takes on the appearance of a plaza with a large flat space and new visitors centre. Morning seems to a god time for photography as the light is pretty much in the right place.

In town we found the Paragon Cafe and decided to have lunch there. It is apparently an ‘institution in Katoomba – very art deco and straight out of the 1930’s. At the front, thief are glass counters of very rich looking chocolates and at the back are a number of tables and booths for dining. It looks to have been at it’s prime in the 1960 ‘s judging by the photos around the wall of TV and movie personalities. Beware though, it is hideously expensive. I don’t think that coffee cost this much on the Grand Canal in Venice! Drinks and meals are outrageously priced in relation to their qualIty. My advice is to stick your nose in the door for a look, but unless you want to mortgage your house to pay for for your meal, go and eat at the pub up the street.

After lunch we drove on to see a number of the cliff top lookouts in the area. These fealty tested my dislike of heights as the only place to take good photographs was to stand right up against the rail, otherwise the safety enclosure could be seen in each of my pictures. Below me was a sheer drop of at least two hundred metros and I didn’t like it much at all. I gingerly tested the sturdiness of each of the railings before ticking the last step to the edge and then held on tightly while I took some one handed photos.

Finally, it was back to Sydney in some very heavy afternoon peak hour traffic.