IT FINALLY HAPPENED. I got to touch a koala and feed a kangaroo! You could say I have accomplished everything I ever wanted to do in Australia… just kidding! Anyway this past Friday my friends and I went to an animal park and wine tasting at Hunter Valley. It was everything I could have wanted.
Hunter Valley. Wine Country in Australia!
First we went to the reptile park. While it was mostly a reptile park there were kangaroos and koalas as well! Koalas sleep almost all day except for three hours out of the day. Thankfully the koala woke up while we were there, but I don’t think he was too happy about it. We walked around the park some more and were able to see birds, snakes, spiders, and everything else you could think of!
After walking around for a bit we finally found where all the kangaroos are! The park sells food for $1. You can feed the kangaroos and hang out with them. My Aussie friends laughed at me because here kangaroos are nothing special. They are basically like deer to us back home. However, I don’t care how much they made fun of me because I loved every minute of it!
Finally getting to pet a kangaroo!
Once the reptile park was done we went to Hunter Valley, which in Australia is wine country. We went to three different wineries and got to try amazing wines from Australia. Hunter Valley was beautiful and way different from the city of Sydney. While I love Sydney it was nice to see some countryside for a while. All in all it was a pretty good day, but I was exhausted at the end! I slept almost the entire car ride back home. Next for me is hopefully a trip to the Great Gatsby mansion!
I think it is normal for any girl to fall for an accent. It is no different in Australia. I’m pretty sure a guy could tell me I’m ugly and I would still be falling over their accent. Side note: Dad I’m not getting married or anything! I just enjoy their accents here. However, accent or no accent I’m struggling sometimes to even understand what people are saying.
Obviously Aussies speak English. It’s just that they have their own meaning for words or in my opinion make up words. Here are a couple things I have started to notice. A truck here is not what we consider a truck back in the states. Trucks here are actually what we think are semi’s home. Here in Australia they call their pick up trucks utes and their semis are called trucks. Speaking of cars gas is called fuel or petrol. To add to the madness I am also realizing that Aussies add u’s and spell things with s’s where we use z’s.
I also misunderstand what Aussies are saying. I think I hear one thing when actually something else was said. In reality it’s not too bad. Once you learn some of the words you start to catch on. However, I’m going to continue calling a truck a truck and not a ute. Sorry. But I love learning all the different words. It may not be a different language, but I can’t wait to share some of the words I’m learning with people back home. Especially considering my friends know I already use some pretty out there words to begin with.
Before I sign off today I just want to say a huge Happy birthday to my dad! Thank you so much for allowing me to come to Australia. I’m so grateful for everything you do for me. I hope your day is filled with sunshine and nice weather like mine was today! Love you and miss you so much dad!
Happy birthday dad!
I have officially been in Australia for almost two weeks now. While I love being here there are some things that I’ll just have to get used to in comparison back home. I’ll share a few with you here but there are many more that I’ll just have to explain later!
There’s no late night food
Typical me, I care about the food. However, back home if you want something to snack on at 1 AM after a night out with friends you can easily go to McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Steak n Shake, order a pizza, etc. Here everything closes really early. You might be able to find something open until 9 PM, but that’s debatable. This is working really well in my favor for staying healthy though, which now makes so more sense why people here are actually in shape.
$1 and $2 are coins/No taxes
I constantly keep thinking I have no money, but then I realize that actually I have a ton of money in coins. I’m sure eventually it will be second nature to know that I have money just in coins. It’s also hard to get used to the fact that if something is $2 then it’s $2, no tax!The no tax thing is amazing and I love it.
My university has a bar
The drinking age in Australia is 18 so a little younger than in the states. My university has their own bar called the Ubar. To understand this it is almost like if Atherton Union had it’s own club. Last night there was a summer party and in two weeks there will be a toga party. It’s a little bizarre compared to back in the states where I’m pretty sure this would never happen. Did I mention people sometimes go after class and grab a drink? At least they were the last time I was there.
Those are just a couple things that I have tried to get used to. I’m still looking both ways on the street because I want to be extra safe and I keep forgetting that Aussies drive on the opposite side of the road than we do. I also have to get used to the fact that some Aussies think I say: Aussie, Australia, and other words in a weird way. However, all these differences is exactly what I wanted. So bring it on Aussies. Teach me your ways!
If you were not aware I am currently living in the future. It’s March 5th here in Australia at 930 AM. I started school on Monday and I feel like a freshman all over again. I haven’t had all my classes yet, but for the ones that I have experienced it is way different from Butler.
At Butler I have never experienced a class bigger than 20. Here I have lectures of 100-150. This my not seem that dramatic to people at bigger schools, but for me on the first day of class I am used to so many different things at Butler. On the first day of class at Butler there is actually attendance taken, icebreakers done, and you actually know at least half the class from previous years. At Macquarie it is the complete opposite. Almost all of the lectures at Macquarie are provided online so you technically do not have to attend the lecture. Actually one of my classes yesterday was an iLecture, so I’ll never go in for the lecture.
I guess I’ll experience smaller sizes when we have tutorials. Tutorials are smaller group discussions where attendance is usually taken. These meet after lectures or sometimes later in the week. It is really weird for me but I’m sure I will get used to it. So far I love my classes. Although it is funny when your Australian professor tries to explain something American. Or like yesterday when my professor used a quote from another professor from UNC (University of North Carolina) and had to explain to my class it was a university in the United States.
In one of my classes I am the only American which is really cool. However, some of the students have found out from none other than my voice and started to bombard me with questions about America.
I will say one thing is for sure Butler definitely prepared me for a lot of things here. In one of my classes I am applying for a program called PACE International Stream, which will allow me to work on a marketing campaign for a non profit in India. If chosen I will be able to experience interactions with international company and hopefully they will use the teams’ campaign idea. At Butler I did something similar and when asked about the skills I had so many through my classes at Butler. It took me a million miles to realize how thankful I am for everything I’ve learned at Butler.
I’ll keep you guys posted if I get into the program! Other than that everything is great! It’s weird to say this, but I almost forgot that I came here for school so it’s probably a good thing it started back up.
Here’s a song that I loved when I heard back in the states, but in Australia is super popular!
Before I explain why there is glitter everywhere I would just like to start out by saying no one in Australia has yet to hear my real voice. Ever since I’ve gotten to Australia I have this terrible itch on my throat and have lost my voice. I will probably post reactions of people to my real voice, because right now I sound like a man.
Anyway, yesterday was Mardi Gras! It was insane. In Sydney, Mardi Gras is huge for the LGBT community. When I say there is glitter everywhere I’m not joking. I have never seen so much glitz and sparkle in my life, but it was amazing. It was quite the experience that I don’t think I’ll ever experience in the states.
Dressed up for Mardi Gras!
Sydney was packed with people from all over just excited to celebrate and see the parade. My friends and I couldn’t find really good spots to see the parade so we didn’t stay that long, but it was cool just to be there. Everyone supported the parade even the Queen Elizabeth on the Sydney Harbour!
Happy Mardi Gras from Queen Elizabeth!
My goal today is try to get off the five billion pounds of glitter on me as well as get rid of this annoying cough/scratchy throat. Classes start tomorrow so I’ll keep you posted on how that goes!
The past couple of days I have been settling into my surroundings. It has been a challenge to get used to looking the correct way when crossing the street as well as figuring out that buying a ton of groceries at once probably isn’t ideal when you have to walk back to your apartment. However, it is gorgeous!
Yesterday we had orientation at our uni (Aussies shorten university to uni). I never realized how large Macquarie was until yesterday. This will be quite the experience because not only have I never been to Australia I have never attended a large school. At Butler I’m used to class sizes of 15-20. Here I could possibly experience lectures of up to 400 people, so that will be interesting.
After orientation we had a hippie or hipster themed party on a boat on the Sydney Harbour! It was so cool. Being able to see the opera house and the Sydney Harbour bridge at night was amazing. I also was able to learn a lot from some Aussies about places to go and things to do so that was really nice.
On the cruise by the Opera House!
So far the only thing I have to complain about Australia is how expensive it is, but other than that it’s so pretty and the people are so nice. I have yet to try Vegemite but that also might be something I complain about.
My first day in Australia was exhausting. Fun fact I can’t sleep on planes, so I was basically up for an entire 48 hours. My flight was 4.5 hours from Indy to LAX and then 14 hours from LAX to Sydney. On top of that I basically missed Sunday, and also I didn’t go to sleep last night until 1130 PM. I tried to gun it out as much as possible so that I can get used to the time change here.
Anyway Australia is amazing. I haven’t seen much yet, but I’m really excited to explore. My university here is extremely different from Butler. It’s way more city than I expected. In all my pictures I saw it seemed like I would be in the suburbs and a lot of green space. Butler is in the city, but you don’t feel that way because a lot of our campus is a park setting so its really pretty. However, after moving into my apartment i’m starting to see how Macquarie is so different than Butler! I am in a suburb of Sydney, but it’s super busy and there’s a lot going on all the time!
Yesterday I went to the shopping centre that’s only a 5-10 minute walk from my apartment. It is insanely huge and I got lost. It also has an ice skating rink, which I find bizarre, but I guess Aussies need Winter too!
Macquarie Shopping Centre!
I haven’t taken any photos yet, but when I do I will be sure to share with you! Today I’m going to go grocery shopping so I’m sure that will be an experience. Tomorrow is my orientation day where I actually figure out classes and things like that so I’m excited!
Oh and one last thing it’s 82 and sunny here
For most trips I take a lot of time and effort to plan everything out. However with Australia it seems like I am literally just packing every article of clothing I have. This makes packing seem so less important, which is definitely not the case.
While in Australia I will be there for three different seasons! When I arrive it will still be summer time and when I leave it will be the beginning of winter, which means I get my favorite season of the year fall! Although I have heard Australia seasons are a little warmer than ours, obviously Thankfully my airliner allows two free bags, but I’m worried about how I’m going to walk around with all this stuff.
I’m pretty sure I’m the last Butler person to leave for Australia. This will probably be my last blog before I leave! I have 2 days left, and I have no idea what I’m doing. I’m sure this is really reassuring to my family. However, it’s starting to really settle in that I will be gone for 4 months. I can’t wait to share my experiences with you guys. Hopefully I come back alive with no kangaroo attacks or koala attacks to report.
I know there are a lot of my friends at Butler that say they will live vicariously through me. Trust me I will be doing the same with you guys. While I know I will have the time of my life I will still miss each and every one of you at Butler. I can’t wait to hear how Spring Sports goes, how amazing Spring Break trips are, and I especially cannot wait to hear where all the seniors get their first real people job! Until then live away vicariously through my life. As always I will be blogging, tweeting, facebook, and Instagram!
I’m sure I’ve posted this before, but I cannot stop listening to this song!
There is only 18 days left until I leave for Australia, and I must admit even though I have lived here my whole there are a couple things I am going to miss about Indianapolis.
#1. Awesome Restaurants When people think of a “foodie” city I don’t think they automatically think of Indianapolis, but ever since working at Firebelly Marketing my eyes have been open to a lot of different restaurants in Indy. Some of my favorites include Cerulean, Taste, and who doesn’t love some steaks at the famous St. Elmo’s. What is great about Indy is that there is a deal called Devour Downtown where you get to try meals at some of the best restaurants in town for discounted rates! So while St. Elmo’s may not be ideal for us college kids, you can always give it a go on a Devour Downtown budget.
Unfortunately football season is over. However, this just gives everyone the ability to put their full attention to basketball. I’m going to miss cheering on the dawgs in Hinkle. It is sad to think that I will not be able to see the sunshine glimmer down on Hinkle on a Saturday afternoon. Unfortunately I will not be singing the Butler War Song beneath the Hoosier sky, instead it will be under the Aussie sky. Besides the Dawgs I will be missing out on the Pacers. I’m not going to lie I have never really been a Pacers fan, but I love anything that is going well for Indianapolis and this year the Pacers have been amazing. There are a lot of people saying they may make it to the finals this year, and if that happens I want each and every one of you to cheer them on for me, and maybe go celebrate downtown
It doesn’t get much better than Hinkle Fieldhouse.
I’m obviously going to miss Butler a lot. If you ask any of my friends these past couple of weekends for me have been a constant questioning of is this really a good idea, me leaving for Australia? While I know I will have an amazing time I wish I could take Butler with me. Thankfully for me unlike other study abroad students I have been able to spend a ton of time with my Butler family before I leave. I can’t wait to see what will be different when I get back, but I know one thing is for sure that the people I love will not change when I come home to Butler.
While I will miss so much about Indy I know I will be gaining so much in Australia. I can’t wait to share my experiences with all of you! In the meantime visit Butler and experience some of the things I talked about!
If you haven’t seen this mockumnetary for Richard Sherman, you are missing out.
BUT I MISS CLASSES. My classes in Australia don’t start until March 3rd, so until then I’m not enrolled in any classes. While I thought this would be an extremely relaxing time I never thought it being too relaxing. Doing nothing sounds great to most people, but to me I am starting to lose my mind. Thank goodness for work at Firebelly Marketing or then I would literally probably just be at home watching Netflix 24/7.
You think not having classes would be great, but it’s not. I feel like a student who has dropped out. You think that you’ll have people to hang out with, which is some what true, but since people have classes at different times during the day it’s hard to plan schedules out. On top of that most of my friends at Butler just like myself are involved with five billion different things, so you are no longer just planning on classes but also on extra activities.
For the most part I keep my timed preoccupied through work, but I do miss class. At least with class you can have breaks in the day where you’re taking a nap or just hanging out. Work doesn’t exactly have a time for naps. In class you may think you are dreading that pop quiz or that test coming up, but at least you can prepare yourself for that. At work you may never know what can happen in one day. So as much as I complain about classes, I miss them. Watch in a month when I start Australian classes I will wish I was back in this moment. You always want what you can’t have.
Here’s something to get you in the mood for some Super Bowl Sunday madness with a lot of Colts appearances