Settling in: The week where nothing happened

I’m going to be honest with you.

As you know, I’ve been getting behind on the blogs, so I’ve been writing notes on my phone of what I do each week so I don’t forget when it comes to writing the blog about that week. However, for this week, I genuinely couldn’t remember much of what I’d done. It’s just vanished out of my memory. So I’m going to assume that this was a week where the work of uni began to kick in, and I got down to studying for real!

In short, I apologise if this blog is short, but this is what I got up to:

Work

Despite what many people may think about studying abroad, it’s not just a holiday- I actually have work to do as well as enjoying myself. On a few days this week, Anna asked me to go to the library with her so we weren’t alone when we were studying. It’s always good to have someone to talk to so yu don’t bore yourself to death.

At times, the library can be a bit dull, so we went exploring other study areas to work in. We found one opposite Manning Bar, which was a really quiet spot as it was fairly late at night. The only problem was that the doors locked at a certain time, and even though they were automatic, they didn’t work on the inside. After a few minutes of awkwardly standing by the door, we worked out how to get out and made our bid for freedom!

To get off campus, we had to walk through the graffiti tunnel. As it was past 7 PM, it meant that people were allowed to graffiti on the walls. Only one guy was there as we were walking through, but we did notice some cans of paint left on the floor from where someone had been working. Since they had been left there, we used them to write our own names on the wall!

Being Arty

I may have mentioned that I have a four-day weekend, which is really good for studying abroad, as it means that I can do work on Thursday and Friday, which leaves the weekend free for me to explore!

One of the things on my checklist of places to visit in Sydney was the Museum of Contemporary Art, which is located in Circular Quay. After doing my first Parkrun in the morning (it’s a really tough course by the way), I decided to catch a bus into the city.

 

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The start of my first Parkrun (it was rainy but then humid)

 

The art gallery was free, which is always a good thing to hear when you’re a student. I started off with a tour, led by the world’s quietest tour guide. I could barely understand a word she said, but the bits that I did hear were interesting. We walked through exhibitions designed to showcase the latest Australian talent.

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I think I need to make it clear that art is not my thing; it just confuses me. I like it when it is clear what the art is about. However, when I am watching a video of blindfolding clowns trying to catch red balls thrown at them, I have no idea what is going on.

Some of the art, I admit, was nice to look at, but I did not understand whatit meant. Here’s a list of some of the art that stood out for me (both in good and bad ways):

  • Some of the aboriginal art was very impressive as it was all created using the artist’s fingers
  • A huge wall painted with colours, based on a survey of the Australian public based on what colours they prefer
  • A printer made out of concrete
  • A wall of flipping colours, that turned at random so that every combination is different
  • A room with music stands and paper on the floor (I thought the paper on the floor was actually part of the floor, and as there was nothing os top you, I walked over them, accidentally moving the paper! I left very quickly!)

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On the top of the gallery, there is a rooftop cafe, which would normally have nice views of the Harbour. Unfortunately, there was a cruise ship in the way which blocked the views!

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There were some nice views from the rooftop

As I left, the cruise ship was leaving, so I decided to stay and watch it go, as many other people were doing. A guy came out the front holding a giant yellow hand to wave goodbye to everyone. Most of the tourists waved back – I didn’t.

On the way back, I decided to walk through Hyde Park to the Anzac Memorial, as I had not yet been there. It is a very moving place, with stars covering the dome above. In the centre is a statue, meant to represent the sacrifice of the soldiers. There is currently work being done on the memorial, which looks very nice, but I doubt it will be completed before I leave.

Films

One night, Maddie and Maria invited me round there flat to watch a film, as they had to watch an Australian movie for one of their projects. We watched Australia, which I really enjoyed watching as it helped me to understand Australian culture. Particularly, it revealed to me more about Australia’s role in WWII and the issue of the Stolen Generations.

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Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman, how much more Aussie can you get?

[One night, I went along with the Americans to get gelato on Glebe Point Road. This was on the first Monday of O-Week, but I’ll throw it in here. This was one of the first times I went out with them just to fill you in.]

After the meeting on Sunday, the youth of SCH all decided to go and watch a film at the cinema (it’s worth noting that Andrew was generous enough to buy me a cake for lunch!). We went to a cinema on George Street, and all managed to get in for free because Joel had saved up enough on his loyalty card – what a guy!

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Andrew bought me a cake – perhaps the fanciest cake I’ve ever seen!

Sitting on the back row, with Joel drinking his Choccy Milk, we watched Logan, which was the final film with Hugh Jackman as Wolverine. Ironically, Jackman also starred in Australia. It was a good film to watch, although some of the violence was quite explicit – none of us were expecting that so it was a bit of a shock!

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This is more violent that it would seem

Practice, practice, practice

At SCH, we had had a rehearsal on Tuesday for the upcoming Bill Himes Concert. This rehearsal was led by Ron Prussing, former bandmaster and now principal trombone of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. It was good to finally get playing on my eupho again!

On Friday, I also had my first rehearsal with the Sydney Youth Band, who were doing the first half of the Bill Himes night. It was great to meet more Salvo youth from across Sydney, with some of them driving three hours to get there!

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