We spent our last couple days in Australia at Bondi Beach. We booked an apartment through Airbnb, a couple streets from the beach. The apartment was two levels with the bedroom downstairs, but we navigated it without too much trouble. We actually constructed a makeshift bed for the girls on the floor, as the apartment only had one bed. After we dropped off our suitcases at the apartment, we walked with the kids a block to a police station and asked for information about clinics where Eloise's ears could be checked. The police officer was very helpful and spent about 10 minutes investigating before she gave us options. I made an appointment that evening at a local clinic a few blocks away and took Eloise while Chris and Fiona explored the beach. Eloise's ears were on the cusp of infection, but I still filled the antibiotic prescription since the idea of her ears getting worse for our flight home in two days was unbearable. The visit was $75 out-of-pocket and $15 to fill the antibiotic.
During our days off Bondi, we took long walks, ate ice cream and played on the beach. The water here was a beautiful turquoise and the sand fine and soft. Fiona was disappointed that there were few shells to collect, and she resorted to a clutching a handful of small rocks. Our airbnb host left instructions where to access his surfboard, so Chris took it out a couple times, once with us and the other time by himself. I couldn't get any good pictures of him swimming since I had to keep Eloise out of the water and alive (she likes to run straight into the water). You can see in the second picture below an action shot of Eloise making a break for the water while Chris chases her. Before the trip, I had imagined leisurely hours on the beach wading in the water or building sandcastles, but the kids were too different to allow such an idyllic scene to occur. Fiona wouldn't even touch her toes in the water, and Eloise wanted to be in the water so much she wouldn't play on the sand. So we didn't spend as much time on the beach as expected. The rock pool in one of the last pictures was pay-for-entry so we didn't try it out.
We all enjoyed going to the grocery store in Australia, including the kids who would grab an apple from the "free fruit for kids" basket. We found some fun restaurants with kid areas, and one evening, we took the kids to a grassy area overlooking the water and let them run around.
In the first picture, Fiona arranged the chairs so she could play "doctor." Chris suggested he be the doctor, but Fiona laughed and said that boys aren't doctors (her pediatricians are women).
An evening walk our last night in Australia. Fiona figured out how to stick her head out the back of the stroller.
A last picture of the flight home. Fiona let Eloise sleep in her lap for a couple hours. We soldiered through the 14 hours with lots of shows, coloring, sticker, toys and snacks. Everyone was very excited to arrive home.