So, last Friday (the 17th) I said goodbye to my family and friends and hopped on a plane for 30 hours to the other side of the World. Packing was not easy at all, I thought I had packed really well but on my home scales my bag weighed over 38kg (had to be 30) so after hours of culling clothes and more I was ready to go. Saying goodbye at the airport to my family was hard but we had a lovely last meal together and I think they were just as excited for me for this journey as I am.
30 hours later and I had touched down in Adelaide. I had booked an airport pickup service with the University which was great, I had a really friendly man waiting for me with my name on a board (makes you feel so important) and he drove me straight to my accommodation. The airport is only about a 15 minute drive from the CBD and he showed me lots of places on route, it was a great welcome to the city. I pre booked my accommodation and went for one of the halls on option to me called ‘Urbanest‘ it was quite a pricey option but its the most sociable and is very good for internationals as they provide linen and kitchen packs etc and its also the closest to the uni. I was greeted and checked straight into my room whilst I met my first friend Taylor from Canada. I am on the 16th level of the tower so I am very high up which means I have such a lovely view from my room.
Following an induction tour of the accommodation a group of us went down to the park outside the oval (football stadium) by the river where big tv screens display the football matches. It was Adelaide crows vs Port Adelaide, it took us a while to work out which team we should be supporting, the Crows it was! It was such a great atmosphere with loads of food stands and entertainers and a huge crowd of people with beautiful weather too. Even though we didn’t really have any clue of what was going on, too many rules! Later on we headed over to a pub/bar for some drinks and much needed food.
So this week was ‘O Week‘ (orientation week) so basically it included lots of briefings, talks, tours and also lots of free food! I’ve been so impressed how well organised it has been by the University. I didn’t realise how many internationals this University has, turns out 1 in 4 students are international! Lots of talks were run by the uni at a choose your own schedule plan. These included things such as the University learning environment, budgets and bargains, Aussie culture and lots more. They have been super useful and we even got to taste some vegemite (I liked it!). Tours of the campus and library were regularly running and were great, the campus here is so beautiful and a lot smaller than Southampton so I love it. Socials were also arranged such as pancake morning, welcome bbq, Aussie culture quiz night and pub crawl night. These were great fun and a good way to meet new people as well as nights out (the free food and coffees every morning was also amazing).
To top off an amazing week there was an organised trip on Friday to Victor Harbour. After a contribution of $10 we got to travel to Urimbirra Wildlife park to feed and play with Kangaroos, Koalas and lots more. My GoPro for my 21st birthday came in very handy with the selfies! it was my first time seeing these animals and it was truly amazing, Kangaroos are so much bigger than I expected and have quite a character too! We then headed to the famous harbour for some SHARK and chips (with chicken salt too) and then walked it all off around Granite Island which was beautiful.
It was such an amazing day and I can’t believe I’ve already seen and done lots of things on my to do list out here. After a long day we hit the goon again (bags of wine) and headed out for another night out. This time we went to a club called ‘London’ (slice of home) which was great!
The weekend came at a much needed time and also came with a lie in. A few of us headed for an explore and ended up going for a walk around the Botanic gardens and along the riverside. The green spaces here are so beautiful and right on our doorstep outside the CBD. Walking along the river I saw a few boat sheds which made me really excited to start rowing here. After a few games of ping pong and bit more unpacking a group of us headed out for another dinner out. Its surprisingly cheap to eat out here, more so than buying the food! Our accommodation had advertised a free frozen custard ice cup with any burger at burger theory so we thought we would test it out and it was uhmazzing. One thing for sure is I’m loving the Aussie food!! We had planned a night out but we all crashed after a busy week and ended up having a movie night in one of our flats. The University gave us a list of must watch Aussie films so we started it off with Wolf Creek. I am not the best with horror films and its safe to say I was under the duvet for about half of the film. Which leads me on to why I’ve decided to write this blog at 1 am in the morning to avoid getting nightmares tonight!!
Tomorrow morning is another pancake morning but held by our accommodation this time so I’m looking forward to waking up to that! A few of us plan to head out to the shops to do our food shops at Woolworths/Coles as we still haven’t had to do them yet and maybe head to some op shops (charity shops) for some home necessities. We then may go for a explore around the city, I’m hoping we get to the beach! Monday brings the first week of lectures and I’m actually really looking forward to it. I like having a routine and I’m looking forward to meeting my lecturers and class mates and getting stuck in. Next week is also the sport sign up on the lawns so that will be good. We’ve all agreed to sign up for one sport we normally wouldn’t do at uni so we can try something new, at the moment mine is waterskiing! Theres also lots of big social events on next week which I’m looking forward to especially another bbq, I could get used to the Australian winter!
It’s been such a great week and I have done so much already. I cannot wait to see what else is in stall for me!!
Reed in Radelaide.