Monday, 22 July 2013

back to school

Today was the first day of class! Sorry mom and dad, but I didn't take a picture in front of the customary tree this year. I did consider it though.
Classes here aren't too different, except that most of the students in my first class also could've been my parents. This is the bridge from the village where I live to the main campus. I thought it looked cool. So far cars have beeped almost every time I've walked across it

I then felt a little uncomfortable in my Popular World Musics class when every student began naming all sorts of different tribal bands and musicians I had never heard of. Then someone brought up Ladysmith Black Mombazo, who was infamously introduced to me through Mean Girls, so at least I could relate a little bit.

This past weekend my friends and I explored the beach town/city at Surfer's Paradise. I can't wait to go to the beach more often when it gets nicer outside, but the open air market with all sorts of crafts was pretty cool. We then went to a really cool Irish Pub that had dinner and drinks for $ excellent deal for a soon to be broke college student.

Since my roommate lost her passport, my friends and I decided to make a trip out of her going to Sydney to get a new one. We booked flights for August 30th, and I'm really excited to go.

I've been noticing some pretty obscure things are different here. For instance, today I went to a yoga class and found that an Australian accent is not the best kind of voice to relax and meditate to.
Australians also seem to be really into sausages of all kinds. Maybe that's because they're cheap? But they are everywhere.

Until next time, hopefully I'll have some more interesting adventures to share!

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

First Post!

After arriving in Australia almost two weeks ago, it has taken awhile to get situated. But now, here is where all my crazed fans can follow what I'm doing for the next 5 months.

On July 6, I departed Boston for LA. After a long flight and getting lost in the terminal, I found some friends and we all boarded the 14 hour flight to Sydney. A combined 29 hours of flying and one lost suitcase later, we arrived at Gilligan's backpackers resort in Cairns, Australia for orientation.
Immediately thrown into Australian life, I moved into my hostel room directly above the bar and club that Gilligan's also boasted. And realized I was certainly a long way from home. The biggest difference so far in culture? No wifi is free. Anywhere.

Everyone that I met through Globalinks orientation is wonderful, and we definitely bonded further over the next few days in Cairns. I held a koala, took selfies with a kangaroo and learned aboriginal dancing at Rainforestation.

The next day, we woke up basically at dawn to head to the Great Barrier Reef for snorkeling. The two hour boat ride each way was daunting to say the least. A super choppy and windy day, many people were really seasick and miserable. Thank god for dramamine!! The reef was beautiful. The best part was definitely seeing a sea turtle up close. However my pants got really wet and my only pair of sandals were in my still lost suitcase, so I walked home looking like this...

After a bar crawl and some really fun times with our Globalinks group, we left Cairns for Brisbane. We then boarded a bus to Griffith Village, my new home for five months. When the bus dropped our group of 30 people off, it finally hit me that I was here in Australia, ready to embark on this crazy journey. Finally we were able to move in and meet our roommates and go grocery shopping (where I felt like a huge foreigner)
If there's one thing that's been apparent since I arrived at Griffith village, Australians really love to have a good time. They drink from noon til dawn then wake up and do it all over again. Life is pathetically exhausting. 
Last night was an Australian rugby match with Queensland defeating New South Wales in the State of Origin series. It was a really cool experience to watch the game at the campus bar (not real life)
Emily and I planned our travels yesterday around Australia. I can't wait to get started.