Feb 25, 2011
I forgot to mention in my last post that a few days ago, (being in res means I have no sense of time at all), I did a scavvy hunt in the city with some o-week homies! It was really fun, we got to see a whole bunch of interesting spots downtown. I wish I'd kept the list of things we had to get, but some of the highlights were making a human pyramid on a moving train, seeing the Shrine of Memorial, watching C and S get at it in a burger-eating competition, and seeing some team members dive into a public fountain in front of the art gallery. It was a cool way to see the city, and I'm hoping to go downtown some time next week, since I only have 3 days of school a week, and one of those days ends at 1pm.
Also I've applied for several jobs, cleaning, tutoring, and advertising, only two have contacted me back and they don't look very hopeful, although they would both be cool jobs, and the one that I have an interview with is to be a cleaning lady for the building down the road. Ugh gross. But you do what you do and I need moneys for Thailand, and I'm telling myself that it builds character.
In other news, this weekend will be so fun! M is coming down from Sydney to visit, and we have a whole weekend of fun shit planned, including dinner and a play, and the red bull air plane races, or whatever that competition thingy is. Either way it will be so nice to see a friendly face and spend some time away from res. Then the weekend after next W, E and I are going up to Sydney. Bondi, mama's comin back!!!!
Today I went to the Healesville Sanctuary. It's very cool and only has native Australian animals, and it's partly an animal hospital which is very nice. It was supposed to be $65 but my girl W found an awesome deal for $25, so we bought those tickets. It was nice to spend the day actually doing something, I was going stir crazy in res every day. My favourite part about the sanctuary was definitely the koala's, they are so cute and cuddly looking, although apparently vicious when up close and personal. It was so funny to watch them all dopey from eating the eucalyptus, wake up, scratch themselves, then curl right up into a lazy ball.
Tomorrow I'm going to try wakeboarding for the first time, since I joined the wake boarding and waterskiing club on campus. It should be fun and was only $15 for the first time! I'm pretty happy that I'll finally be in water tomorrow, god I missed it so much! Even though I'm sure it won't be anything like the beaches in Sydney or Byron, it will be better than being dry thats for sure.
I'm also very sad that my tan has faded, it's because there's been no bloody sunshine here. Well when there has been I've been bundled up in my brand new Monash U sweater because it's so c-c-c-cold up in Melbs.
Last night was also pretty fun, W, A and I went to Luna Park in St. Kilda, and went on the rides and roller coasters, which was a total blast and way better than going to the local bar, The Nott (which is also fun but slightly lame with over priced drinks and too many jaffies). Jaffies by the by, stands for Just Another Fucking Freshman .. haha! High-larious.
Enjoy pictures of my life, since I have no pictures of my outfits lately.
Feb 18, 2011
Feb 17, 2011
So I have officially moved into residence, been here for almost a week. I took the train from M's place in Sydney, to Melbourne. My parents friends S&M picked me up at the train station and took me to breakfast, then to my dorm room and helped me settle in, they were so kind, I couldn't have done it without them. It was kind of tricky trying to find the Halls of Residence, the campus has a pretty weird layout. So I got in, semi-unpacked my stuff and got really nervous because I didn't know anyone and I didn't know where anything was and I was sooo hungry and didn't know where the caf or grocery store was. So all day I was pretty lonely, and essentially begged my parents to call me, but they couldn't because they were in Mexico, so I got extra lonely and felt like crap. But I found a grocery store that night and got some food and unpacked a little bit more, and also began to meet some other exchange students who had moved in already.
The next day, Valentine's Day, M came over and it was great because we hadn't seen each other for a year. We went out for lunch to this chicken place, and got salads and a giant box of chips, then we did groceries, which was lovely because M had her brothers car so I got a bunch of cans and heavy shit and didn't have to walk home with it all.
I spent the next few days going to orientation meetings, getting my student ID, health card and doctor stuff all sorted out (oh yah, I have tonsilitis AGAIN).
I also went with the exchange students to the Queen Victoria Markets .. well I got to the busses with everyone, but forgot something do I dragged W off and we had to find our way there all by ourselves, which was actually kind of fun because we were all on our own and kind of forced to learn how to use the transport system to get somewhere. The market was very cool, sort of like a Byward market on steroids and under a roof, and I got Greek food and ate lamb for the first time (not a huge fan I must admit). The stalls were pretty cool, and W and I bought these cool cotton singlets with prints on the front, mine is of a girl smoking a cigarette, and hers is a drawing of a giant owl.
Last night we all went out to the Not, a hotel pub, and it was pretty good fun, but M and I drank far too much of the $3 wine we found at the bottle shop, and ended up stumbling our drunk asses home waaay too late, playing with snails in the garden, eating 2 bags of chips, making a gigantic mess, and spending all day today hungover and sick as hell. I could not get out of bed until 3pm this afternoon, it was pathetic, I'd wake up, stay for half an hour, then need to go back to bed. I got nothing accomplished.
Tonight everyone is going to the Red Scooter, and I swear I bought my ticket for $25 a few days ago, but they didn't actually hand me the ticket itself. So I'm screwed, and staying in. Ugh. Oh well, probably better for my liver this way, well actually, probably not, since last time I stayed in to "take it easy" I ended up playing drinking games with the Aussies and losing the King's Cup 3 times in a row (a full cup with pours of everyone at the table's drink, think whiskey, beer, cider, wine, goon, vodka and rum). It is just vile and somehow I lost 3 times and had to drink it. Which is extra funny because I'm also on penicillin. Yumm.
So tonight will probably be like that but I refuse to drink such a stupid amount, especially since M and I are going to a factory outlet store tomorrow and blowing some serious cash (okay visa) because I am in desperate need of some outfits.
In other news, Sailor M (different than Girl M) is coming to visit me in a couple weekends. He's been at sea for a while but he gets a weekend off and is going to come visit, will be so nice to have a friendly face. And then after that I'm going to bring my new friend W up to Sydney with me (god I almost said bring W home with me), that's how fondly I think of Sydney now, especially after being in Melbourne. It's funny because there is this huge rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne, and as much as I do love Melbourne simply because I love this uni, my res and all my new friends, I can't help but think of Sydney as the first and last place I want to be while in Aus. I miss the incredibly stylish and fashionable people walking the streets at all hours of the day, the constant sunshine, the overpriced everything, the beautiful little houses covered with wrought iron that looks like lace while driving out of the city, and most of all I miss Bondi Beach. Sweet zombie Jesus that beach was just awesome. Anyways, needless to say I think Sydney is more my scene, and Melbourne just seems like a big, rainy Toronto with crappy beaches.
It also doesn't help that I haven't had a chance to get to know the city, because it takes over an hour, and multiple busses, trains and trams to actually get from uni into the city, so I can't really just head off and explore whenever I like. But I really do love this campus, as confusing as it is, mostly because residence life is really fun, and the people I have met so far have been really cool and interesting. I can't wait for Sunday, when everyone starts moving into residence and we start meeting everyone! Should be cool.
Feb 13, 2011
So after hours and hours on a greyhound, then being kicked off the greyhound, and having to get on a different one, I finally arrived in Cairns. I checked in at the Nomads Esplanade, which was without a doubt the worst hostel I have ever stayed at, with a total jerk at reception who ended up screwing me over just a couple times on this trip. The next day I went swimming in the Lagoon which was nice but I was seriously missing the beach, and then went back to the hostel where we were told we were being evacuated to the Nomads Serpent a little further inland. So we had to pack a small bag (I had a purse) and leave everything else in our rooms under the beds in preparation for the windows the break during the cyclone. So we reluctantly left our things, went to Serpents, and in the middle of the night were woken up and evacuated again, to the Stockland mall, where we stayed for almost 2 days. The cyclone changed course at the very last minute thank god, so we weren't hit as hard as we were supposed to be. Which is good because realistically, our evac centre was insufficient for the huge amount of people who were crammed in like sardines. But we all lived (well one person in Cairns died) and a baby was born during Cyclone Yasi. I was pretty calm and bored and mostly just slept and ate the whole time, but only really panicked when I was talking to my parents because I got kind of homesick for Canada, where being snowed in is the only time you'd have to eat cans of beans and be trapped in a space for over 24 hours.
So we escaped Airlie in order to be hit again by a bigger cyclone, the biggest one Australia has ever seen in fact, in Cairns. Lovely.
Then we ended up finally getting our backpacks back after dealing with the asshole receptionist, and moving to stay at Nomads serpents which was a great hostel, with great people. While there we did a pub crawl which was insane, and drank a whole lot, but didn't do much during the days.
As for our cruise and working thing, it didn't happen, the ships were still staying in so we were transferred to a different cruise, same price, for 2 days and no option to work and live on board, which was shitty but the cruise was great. Snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef was incredible, staying up all night with the crew, being scared shitless by buddies outside our window, waking up 3 hours later at 5am to do the morning snorkel, breaking into an office to steal a duckie which then committed suicide on the sundeck .. all amazing fun. The food on board was nice too, and the best part of the trip was when I saw a giant sea turtle, and decided to swim on top of it, and I followed it for about 15 minutes, holding onto it's shell and scratching it, which they love. This thing was so big, a couple feet long at least, and soooo peaceful, I was in such a trance, felt like I was all alone in the middle of the ocean, swimming with a giant turtle towards a new life. Fuck it was such a trip. I'm almost glad that my camera died and I couldn't take a picture, because it allowed me to concentrate entirely on this gentle giant and focus so intensely on the moment, that it's been vivdly burned into my mind forever I know.
God it was cool. I also swam like a foot away from a big reef shark, and then saw a huuuuge shark again later. And some Nemo fish! And ginormous clams!! And I kissed a pineapple sea cucumber, but only because J dove all the way down to bring it up for me to see. Lovely times.
After that we stayed in Cairns another couple of nights then booked a flight back to Sydney.
So after leaving Byron Bay, which was beaches beaches beaches, I moved onto Hervey Bay where I stayed for one night before I went to Fraser Island for 3 days of camping, and 4wd-ing along sand dunes in the biggest sand island in the world. Fraser was quite possibly my favourite place in Australia, simply gorgeous and camping is always so much fun. We saw amazing lakes all day, had fun breaking our trucks and waiting for dingoes to come attack us, and played some awesome drinking games with our goon every night. One night we took a walk down to the beach, and in the pitch black, without torches or cell phone lights shining, the sand sparkled when we rubbed our heels against it due to the phosphorous, it's such an amazing sight to see. The crew in our truck/tent was also amazing, we all had such a good time together, and even breaking down was fun.
After leaving Fraser Island, I travelled up to Noosa, stayed for a few days in our biggest dorm yet, a 16-share, which was very fun because the people we stayed with became family, and we spent our days at the beach, and our nights drinking in our dorm and taking walks (more like hikes) to the beach to smoke, eat ice cream, play in the waves and just enjoy owning the whole sky at night. The stars in Noosa were insane, the sky felt so huge and we felt infinite, standing in the water, in the pitch black, staring at the stars surrounding us. God it was beautiful.
After Noosa I travelled up to Airlie Beach (all this travelling North is done by bus by the way, now, a 14 hour train or bus ride, in a small upright seat with noisy neighbours doesn't even phase me .. it's the 16 hour ones that kill). In Airlie Beach there wasn't much to do, from there, and every city further North on the East Coast had beaches that we couldn't swim at due to jellyfish or something. Anyways Airlie Beach consisted of waiting to hear if I could go on my Whistunday's sailing trip, which after 3 days was finally cancelled, so then I decided to leave and go right up to Cairns and try and do my cruise/work-a-board trip. The night we were tying to leave was the night a cyclone hit, and we were told by the police that no busses were running (which was a lie), so we had to go back to a hostel, where we lost all power and it was disgustingly hot and humid and cramped and just gross and no fun. The next morning at 5am, after a breakfast beer, I made a run for the Greyhound and finally arrived in Cairns!