As I write this one, I’m just chillin at the barby in my budgy smuggler and singlet, taking in the footy with my mates over some cold stubbies…Okay no I’m not. That’s a total lie. I felt compelled to stuff all the Australian slang I know into one sentence and force you to search for translations on Google. I’m not sorry either.
For anyone who’s utterly confused by that intro, I’m currently on exchange for a semester in Melbourne, Australia! If you’ve been keeping up with my socials (because we all know I’m the most inconsistent blogger in the entire blogosphere), you might have pieced together that it’s been one hell of an adventure so far. When I’m not falling head over heels in love with Melbourne, I’ve been traveling around as much as possible in hopes of becoming an expert on all things Australian.
To put it simply, Australia is a diverse, culturally rich and utterly enchanting place. I found myself trying to draw comparisons to other places I’ve been, and now I’m of the opinion that doing this is simply an injustice to how uniquely incredible Australia really is. Even with hints of Toronto and New York in big cities like Melbourne and Sydney, and the mesmerizing parallels of their coasts to the Caribbean islands, the nuances of each individual city distinguish Australia from anything else on the map.
My first main adventure was along Melbourne’s Great Ocean Road. When you hear people talk about the endless stretch of blue water and naturally artistic terrain, you’d be crazy not to see it for yourself. I decided to see it in a rather unconventional way: driving along the coast in a van with 22 strangers and a dog, and ending the night in a teepee. Yes, a teepee. I don’t think I was ever much of a “camp-out-in-a-teepee-with-strangers” kinda guy, but I would do it again in a heartbeat.
Surfing (scoring a near 100% success rate at not standing up) along the Great Ocean Road and seeing the 12 Apostles live and direct left me with an even bigger thirst for adventure, so I decided to kick it up a notch. Next stop: The Great Barrier Reef. If you’re a scuba diver and the GBR isn’t at least top 5 on your bucket list, stop reading this right now and go re-evaluate your life. Needless to say, this was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. To fully milk all that Cairns had to offer, I mixed in a casual day of abseiling waterfalls and braving river rapids in the forest nbd (I’d repeat the “most amazing experience of my life” thing but I’m trying to cut down on the theatrics).
To wrap this post up, one thing about Melbourne: I hate Melbourne. I hate Melbourne because in no time at all, it has completely stolen my heart with the promise not to keep it. Low-key just chuckled and offered a “join the club” to everyone who applied that last sentence to a past relationship. Even though this juicy love affair between myself and this artsy, welcoming and harmoniously chaotic city is not meant to last, I already know I’ll carry a bit of Melbourne with me long after this is all over.
- I really enjoy using the word “cheeky” even though I probably do that incorrectly.
- Planning your entire day around brunch is basically a law here.
- Yes, I’m actually in school and my classes are among the most interesting I’ve ever taken.
- I may or may not have a copious collection of empty wine bottles in my bachy pad.
- Vegemite is real.
Till next time,