Basically a Local

Hey everyone!

WOW. I can’t believe it’s been over a month in Sydney so far. Time is zooming by, and that flight home is going to spring up on me.

It’s amazing what happens in a month. My first week here, I was hopelessly confused and scared of getting lost on public transport. Fast forward to now, where I have bus and train routes memorized and can get places without having to use Google Maps…that’s a big step.

Updates since my last post:

Featherdale Wildlife Park was AMAZING. Australia has some…interesting animals. I finally saw kangaroos and koalas (I was starting to believe they were a myth). Insert necessary picture of me with a kangaroo.

Blue Mountains was better than I could’ve imagined. The hike was an easy one with cool spots (waterfalls, look outs), and I’m planning to come back to do the more rigorous (4-5 hr) ones. The nature here is unreal.

My first tournament with my new team here was a success! It was a sunny, hot day, and we played 5 games in one day which is more than I have ever played. I was beyond exhausted. But it was an unforgettable experience. Excited for Regionals, taking place this weekend! Go Rogue!

My group of friends went on our first weekend trip to Port Stephens. It was a small, beautiful coastal town that had some stellar beaches and hikes. I even encountered a wild kangaroo on one of our hikes.

And now on to the ~enlightening~ part of my blog post.

If I had to give the reader 3 takeaways from my trip thus far, they would be:

Getting out of your comfort zone

This is a cliche, I know. But it’s true. Everyone has their group of friends during study abroad, and sometimes you don’t want to do the same things as them! Make this experience yours, and don’t be afraid to go out on your own sometimes to see that show you wanted, or go to that thrift market you were eyeing. Sometimes a little “me” time is needed!

Plan Plan Plan (x100)

Boy did I learn this a little too late. If you have weekend trips in mind, plan them as early as possible. Grab your friends and literally force everyone to purchase their flights or book that Airbnb while you’re all sitting down together. Otherwise it will keep getting pushed back and you’ll have to buy that inflated flight to New Zealand two weeks before you leave…whoops.

B U D G E T 

My favorite thing to do! I’ve been keeping a spreadsheet of all my expenses here (food, groceries, flights, excursions, etc). It keeps me accountable and my bank account thanks me. It makes me question if I really need take away 5 nights a week (‘take away’ = ‘take out’ in Australian lingo) or if I should actually use those groceries I bought to make dinner. The answer is usually the latter.

I’m leaving for New Zealand on Monday, and I could not be more excited! A few friends and I are going to the South Island, around the Christchurch and Queenstown areas. Spring Break, here we come.