Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler
Well, it has been a month since I left home and things are starting to change a bit. The honeymoon feeling is gone and some other things have come up.
This weekend I’m finally taking my first big trip since I landed in Sydney. I’m heading to Brisbane and Fraser Island with one of my best friends from home, Jenny, who’s on the study abroad program with Boston University. We fly in on Friday morning, spend the day in Brisbane, and get picked up for a Four Wheel Drive tour of Fraser Island that’ll last two days. It’s going to be incredible!
Everything has been going really well here. It’s so crazy to think that we’ve been here for a month and a half – where has the time gone?! Last I wrote, I was about to celebrate my 21st birthday. My birthday was on a Monday, when I had a full day of classes, so we went to Hunter Valley to go wine tasting the next day. What a GREAT trip. We went to five different wineries, tasted some amazing wine, and had a really nice day out of Coogee.
Another big change since I last wrote is…I am officially interning at Rolling Stone Australia! It is actually a dream come true. I started last week, and I couldn’t be happier. So far, I’ve been doing research, transcribing interviews, and writing reviews myself that might get published in the magazine. Is this Almost Famous?
I’m off to bed before a full day of class and a jam packed weekend – I’ll be sure it update with some pictures of the tour!
Please note that this blog post was written on Friday, March 11th.
Hello from beautiful Coogee Beach! It’s been a while since I’ve written, and for those waiting on bated breath for my next blog post, I apologize. Truth be told, internet is EXPENSIVE. Plus, I’ve been too busy doing fun things to write about! So that makes it okay, right? Anyway, I’ve been pretty sick the past few days, so what better time to take a moment and blog?
The last time I wrote, I was off to the last day of orientation. Since then, classes have started! We just finished up our second week, and things are going well so far. My schedule is still a little bit up in the air as I haven’t been placed at an internship yet, but this Monday I have an interview with Rolling Stone Australia! Talk about a dream come true. If I get an internship, the classes I will be taking are: Australian Cinema and TV, Contemporary Approaches to Cinema, and Marine Environment.
Over the past two weeks we’ve done a lot of exploring around Sydney. We discovered Eastgartens and Bondi Junction Malls, we have done the gorgeous walk from Coogee to Bondi (it takes about 1.5 hours, but it’s beautiful), we saw Chelsea Handler at the Sydney State Theater, we went to the first rugby match of the season, and have spent a lot of time at the beach! Oh, and studying, of course.
I’ve been here for a month, and I feel as if the time is flying by. My friends and I are starting to book trips, which is incredibly exciting. We just booked spring break in Thailand, on a program called Thaintro. Thailand is the one place I’ve been dying to go to, so it’s safe to assume that I’m counting down the days.
The week ahead is going to be amazing. Tomorrow we’re going to a surf competition in Bondi, and my roommate and I are going to Future Music Festival. It’s a lot of techno and house music which isn’t really my style, but we have VIP tickets, so that should be fun. Sunday we’re going to the Taste of Sydney Food festival. Monday is my 21st birthday, so after classes and my interview we’re going to a nice dinner in the city. Tuesday we’re going to Hunter Valley, which is like Napa Valley wine country, for wine tasting. Last but not least, Thursday we’re going on a cruise around Darling Harbor for St. Patty’s day. It’s definitely going to be a jam packed week!
That’s all for now! I’ll try to keep you guys more up-to-date next week.
My last few days in America were beyond hectic. Believe me when I say you do NOT want to know how packing went. Despite all six weeks of preparation, I still didn’t even finish packing until an hour before leaving for the airport. The night before I even went to Rutgers University to cheer on my a cappella group, The Lehigh Melismatics, in a big competition. I’m just happy that I somehow managed to not get an over-weight baggage charge. Hoorah!
I had been dreading the flight over more than anything else. I’ve been flying all of my life, but last year, when visiting my best friend Shannon in Barcelona, I developed an irrational fear of flying. I literally have spent every flight since gripping the arm rests and square breathing. I’m not sure what it was – perhaps my friend Sarah talking to me and keeping my mind off of things – but I made it through the flights with no problem. I slept a lot, and it only took me a day or so to stop feeling jetlagged. All in all, I’d say it was a success!
We spent the next four days at the Sydney Academy of Sports and Recreation in Narabeen. Truthfully, I was a little antsy to get to my apartment in Coogee, but orientation ended up being pretty fun. We had time to get to know our roommates, housemates, and people in our program, which was really nice. We went to the Taronga Zoo, walked around Circular Quay, took surfing lessons, and had some aboriginal bands perform for us. The orientation was a really great way for us to get over our jetlag, get to know each other, and introduce us into Australian culture.
On Friday we finally got to move into our apartments. My expectations were more than exceeded. Our apartment, which is brand new, is about a five-minute walk from the beach, and has a ton of security. It’s fully furnished with a big living room, kitchen, two bedrooms, and two bath. We have four balconies in our apartment alone. How crazy is that?!
This past week my friends and I have been doing a lot of exploring. I think we’ve eaten at pretty much every restaurant there is in Coogee, have done shopping in Randwick and Eastgartens, gone to the Sydney Aquarium, of course gone to the beach, and have gone to UNSW a few times for orientation-related things. I’m actually off to our last day of Orientation Week now!
That’s all for now. It’s funny to think that there’s snow on the ground at Lehigh University, and I’m about to walk out of the house in a sun dress. I’m not complaining ☺