Unfortunately our time in Australia had to come to an end eventually. Here is the last week in Oz and the first day in New Zealand!
Please ignore the title. Nothing we did this week began with an O...
Been exploring Brisbane area for the past 7 days, so here’s an update on my third Australian City!
While here in Brisbane, we are staying with Sammie’s Aunt Tricia and Uncle Mike in Cleveland, which is a suburb of Brisbane. Since they are not blood relations to me, there is no label for our relationship. Trust me, we googled it extensively. So obviously we had to come up with our own label, and honestly I think this’ll really take off. So here, Oxford dictionary representatives:
cuzaunt /ˈkʌz-ɑːnt/ noun the sister of one’s mother’s or father’s sister-in-law or brother-in-law or the wife of one's cuzunc*
cuzunc /ˈkʌz-ˈʌŋk/ noun the brother of one’s mother’s or father’s sister-in-law or brother-in-law or the husband of one's cuzaunt*
*(© Anya Phillips, 2015)
So it’s Cuzaunt Tricia and Cuzunc Mike for me! Now that that’s cleared up, we can move onto our adventures.
Here’s a look at my final days in Sydney and a brief stop in Melbourne to visit my friends from college, Cole and Georgia!
Monday was pretty relaxed, I didn’t do a whole lot. I went into the city proper to take a stroll around the Museum of Contemporary Art. It’s free to get in and definitely worth a perusal. The visiting exhibit when I was there was on young Australian artists, all from different parts of the country. Their pieces drew on their personal experiences within the country and it was intriguing to see very different interpretations of the same country. Australia is a big place, so this makes sense but seeing it visually is powerful. The museum also has an extensive permanent gallery, which was fairly sized. My favorite piece was a collection of typed words and phrases from different Australian and Korean political speeches. Each word or phrase was typed twice, once in ink and once in its carbon copy. The ink will last forever, but eventually the carbon copy will fade to nothing. This interpretation of influential words I found incredibly intriguing.
Second week in Australia and I’m loving it. Sam headed up to Brisbane for training purposes and I stayed behind in Sydney to take in a little bit more of the city.
On Tuesday morning before Sam had to head for the airport, we went into the city to get a tour of the Opera House. It’s a beautiful building, and very iconic. I don’t remember a lot because it the hour long tour we were given a lot of information, but I can give you a few things. The building was designed by Jorn Utzon. There was an international design competition in 1955 which Utzon entered and ended up winning, and construction started in 1959. His innovative and futuristic design captured the attention of people immediately, and one of the most interesting facts for me was his use of glass as walls. At that time, this was a very new and strange concept, so Uton was really a leader is this architectural style. Originally, the job had a projected time-til-completion of 3 years and costing only $7 million. Yeah, right. When it was formally completed on its opening by Queen Victoria in 1973, it had taken 14 years and cost $102 million. Talk about a mis-budgeting! To get the extra money, the government started an “Opera House Lottery” and, according to our tour guide, the money was all raised in 18 months because of the Aussie’s love of betting. The building is really one inside of another; the interior was built/designed after the iconic exterior was fully formed. Now to be more in the present. Unfortunately, I wouldn’t have been able to go to an opera while I was there, because the month of October is their musical theatre month. There has always been shared time at the Opera House between the ballet and opera companies, each having it’s own season. However, starting 4 years ago, they decided to try and get a different crowd to come to the Opera House and so had a musical run for the month of October. It was a great success and they’ve been continuing that ever since.
First post from Australia! We landed in Sydney at around 12:30pm last Tuesday. The flight was pretty smooth and after our insane day running around Hong Kong, we were quite ready to not be moving. Of course we had to go through customs and immigration which went quite smoothly. Considering our lack of visas less than 48 hours prior, this was a definite relief. We made our way through immigration, and then through customs, where we had to tell them that Sam’s kayak paddle had been in lakes and rivers in Hungary. I had never done that before, so I thought they’d have to take it out and inspect it or something, but the man just asked a few questions and sent us on our way!
We were greeted by Ross, a friend of both my mom’s and Sam’s parents from QMC (where they went to college). Apparently this trip could be titled “Around the World with QMC.” It’s great fun though! Ross gave us the option of heading back to the house or going over to the famous Bondi Beach for a walk around and some lunch. I voted for the second option because I knew if we went back I would fall asleep immediately and never be able to function on the time change. So off to Bondi we went.