It’s hard to believe that I’ve been out of the states for a week already. Looking back on this week, there was a lot that we managed to fit into such a short time. I was able to pet a kangaroo, take a picture with a koala, knee board on a cable ski course, ride an atv for the first time, see a sliver of the Sydney Opera House, and now I go to school in a castle. It is an unreal experience.
Cairns was the first part of the trip over in Australia and after over a day of airports and planes, we jumped right in and started learning about Australia and the local city. We woke up early every day and had an action-packed time in Cairns. However, with the threat of a cyclone, our Great Barrier Reef trip was cancelled. The activities in which we still participated were loads of fun even with this little damper.
After the thrilling and fast-paced four days in Carins, we had to head out bright and early on Sunday morning to catch our plane to Sydney. The 6:45 flight was a fun time even though I had only had about 3 or 4 hours of sleep. After landing, we were met by some of our coordinators from ICMS and GlobaLinks. We loaded onto a bus and headed out on the road to our new home.
On our trip, we saw the tip of the Sydney Opera House and drove over the Sydney Harbour Bridge. It was truly unreal to see these things that we had only dreamed of seeing one day. Upon reaching ICMS, we received our keys and moved in. Our GlobaLinks coordinator told us to drop our stuff in our rooms and join him for a walk down to the beach to show us the city. Needless to say, it was a gorgeous view.
The city has plenty to offer in the way of sunny beaches and beautifully scenic views. Manly is quite a serene place and even with the tourists around, it is nice to be in such a beautiful city.
After this walk, we continued our busy schedules and tried our best to unpack in the downtime. The college’s orientation week (or O-Week) is one full of activities and fun. We started it off by receiving our highly-anticipated class schedules and continued by learning about the college, its history, its offerings, and more. To cap off the first night, there was an Aussie party which was held at the uni bar. No, you didn’t hear me wrong, my uni has a bar which is run by students for students.
Over the next couple of days, we had more sessions to get us acclimated to the uni and this new environment. We also had more social times where we could meet the students from 24 different countries and have a good time.
So far, so good. Even with the times of homesickness, I am having quite an amazing time here with the new friends that I have made.