Thursday, July 26, 2012

17702.8 kilometers

Hey 'errbody!

So, I've landed and been here for just under a week. It has been busy with orientation. Luckily though, that includes free meals :)

In the morning - which will be supper time for most of you, readers - the CIEE group is headed south to Denmark for the weekend. So, I'm going to save my post of all the cool things I've done until after I get back! It will be quite a hefty update!

Alas, here are just some quirky or different things about living at here that ya'll may enjoy.

photo cred to:

  1. Ramen noodles are pretty fancy here. They come with seasoning, chili powder or sauce (depending on seasoning flavor), a seasoning oil (which I have been nervous to try), fried onions, and soy sauce. I still haven't found a mix of ingredients which tantalize my tongue in quite the sodium and fake chicken-y way of US Top Ramen. Oh well.
  2. Milk cartons don't need to be refrigerated until opened. A heating process keeps it safe and on the shelf until you are ready to use it.
  3. There is no heat (or air conditioning) in the Student Village (the res hall). In each person's room there is a little plug in radiator which shuts off on a timer every hour. So although it is not really that cold, considering, everyone's flats are freezing. Ugg, and the ceramic bathroom in the morning!
  4. Grocery stores (well, all stores!) are just starting to have Sunday trading hours.
  5. BUT you can take your trolley (shopping cart/carriage) from the store and walk it back to your flat. Imagine that, not having to walk with bags upon bags after your shopping. It's so grand. :)
  6. There is so much American culture in Australian media. 
  7. On that note, it was different hearing the Aussie perspective on gun control after the "Dark Knight" shooting a few days ago. People, particularly the younger folks I talked to, almost seemed confused by how lax gun legislation appears to.
  8. It is difficult to remember to walk on the left side of the sidewalk. Of course, I repeat 'left, left, left' in my head too much and I forget to look right-left-right when crossing the street. 
  9. When my flatmates talk about it getting only as high as 40 degrees, and I shiver, forgetting that I need to think in Celsius. 
  10. Professors are addressed by their first name. This may take some getting used to.
  11. Drug stores are called chemist shops. Kmart is alive and kicking in WA. Target is wicked expensive, well, at least for being Target. 
  12. The Australian government pays qualifying citizens welfare while they attend school. Also, university does not have to be paid for if the student never exceeds a particular income (I think it is around AUD 40,000). Now, imagine the cost of US tertiary education and those federal loans. Different, right?

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