September 4, 2011

August: Day by Day

Wandering what Dave and I did in the month of August when were first starting our adventure in Australia? Well, wonder no more.....

August 31, 2011:
  • Apartment sprayed for roaches! YAY!
  • Went to Hogs Breathe Cafe for lunch..ick
  • Walked to Tree of Knowledge Park..feel enlightened now!
  • Walked sunset at Queens Wharf
August 30, 2011:
  • Hot Chocolate and Cupcake 
  • Afternoon in the park: Me reading and Dave playing rugby by himself
  • Dave met a local who kicked the ball around with him
August 29, 2011:
  • Trip to library and to get hot chocolate
  • Went wandering further down Darby Street and found our way to Bar Beach
August 28, 2011:
  • Grocery shopping..cause that is what we do on Sunday!
  • Went to Stockton to do the Shipwreck Walk and watched the sunset
August 27, 2011:
  • Woke up to landlord pounding on our door...she just had updates for us.
  • Friendly carpenter fixed the hole in our bathroom wall.
  • Cleaned the apartment.
  • Ate supper at Turkish restaurant and ate a Pide for the first time. 
  • Watched the Final Game of the Tri Nation (Wallabies vs. All Blacks). Beginning to really enjoy watching Rugby!
August 26, 2011:
  • Got our first Aussie haircuts!
  • Figured out where the coach terminal was.
  • Researched and began discussions for future trips out of Newcastle.
  • Watched The Farmers Wants a Wife and I fell in love with Farmer Kev!
  • FaceTime Chatted with my sister and nieces!!!!
August 25, 2011:
  • Took train into Sydney for the day!
  • Saw The Rocks Settlement, Sydney Harbor Bridge, Sydney Opera House, Royal Botanical Gardens.
  • Watch sunset over the bridge and the opera house light up.
  • Ate at Hungry Jack's
  • Took over 450+ photos
August 24, 2011:
  • Got loads of stuff done in the morning!
  • Went running at beach and Nobbys Head...walked back!
  • Went to new park and read under the tree
  • Dave made supper for the first time in Australia!
August 23, 2011:
  • Shipped first PhotoSho order from Aussie
  • Walked around Market town area
  • Ate Indian food
  • Went to Newcastle Beach close to sunset
  • Dave got stung by Jellyfish...I laughed because I am a supportive wife
August 22, 2011:
  • Shipped off first set of pressies to the states (WAAAYYY expensive)
August 21, 2011:
  • Went out to eat for lunch at Zinc
  • Searched for the Newcastle Sunday Paper..found the Saturday Paper
  • Got caught in another Newcastle drizzle
  • Watched 4 episodes of Bones in bed
  • Watched the newest episode of Bones on the boob tube
August 20, 2011:
  • Dave and I slept with the light on so I didn't have to worry about the roaches
  • Went to Centerary Antique Center 
  • Took first ferry ride to Stockton
  • Got caught in storm (was pelted by rain!)
  • Saw a very large ship come into the harbor
  • Cooked first meal on the stove, Alfredo!
August 19, 2011:
  • Woke up late (and cranky) due to little sleep because I kept thinking roaches were going to crawl on me!
  • Weather was dreary and drizzly
  • Went to Aldi for pop, chips, chocolate, ice-cream, and Raid
  • Sprayed the crap out of the apartment with Raid!
  • Had cake and ice-cream..yum!
  • Played Scrabble and took a little break to kill two roaches
  • Watched first 2 episodes of The Wire
  • Cleaned up another HUGE roach in the shower before heading to bed
August 18, 2011:
  • Went to Newcastle Regional Art Gallery
  • Got library card (well..Dave did) and checked out some books
  • Went shopping for pressies on Darby Street
  • First workout session in a LOOOONG time! We went through our area The (steep) Hills.
  • Found new park for us to sit under palm trees and read the day away
  • Killed the BIGGEST roach ever! It was an Australian it!
August 17, 2011:
  • Lazy day to the overcast and drizzle!
  • Changed lightbulb (how exciting and home ownerish of us)
  • Found post office and sent out our first post (costs $2.35 to mail a letter to US)
  • Found local used bookstore and searched the many many shelves
  • Curled up under blankets watching tv
August 16, 2011:
  • Used our stove for the first time...and made the smoke detector off multiple times!
  • Went to Kotara to Blackbutt Reserve
  • Pet a Koala
  • Saw baby koala and joey plus many beautiful birds
  • Had our first meal at our apartment (well...warmed up pre-cooked lasagna!)
August 15, 2011:
  • Slept in because my crazy husband talked about people coming in and scared me so I didn't fall asleep until late!
  • We played catch with our rugby ball in our little backyard
  • Got our phone to work!!
  • Bought pressies for the family!
  • Dave got a cricket bat to hit intruders with (he had a baseball bat in the states!)
  • Booked our trip to Rugby World Cup 2011 in New Zealand!!
  • Called home for the first time!
August 14, 2011:
  • Went to Marketown Shopping Area
    • Woolworths
    • Big W
  • Bought phone at Big W (kind of like Walmart)
  • Bought groceries at Woolworths and walked back 30 min with all our purchases
  • Played travel Scrabble into the night
  • Watched Bones on TV (first time ever doing this)!
August 13, 2011:
  • Moved into new apartment! Then spent the rest of the day cleaning, disinfecting, and doing laundry!
  • Went to Go-Lo and purchased items for our apartment, we then carried our items up the STEEPEST HILL EVER!
  • Discovered the netflix and hulu do not exist over in Australia (boooooooooo!)
  • Ate at TakeAway Burgers on Darby Street, where we indeed did take away our burgers and ate them in our new apartment!
  • Spent the rest of the evening cuddled on the couch watching tv!
August 12, 2011:
  • HUGE storm in the morning, the wild was howling outside our window!
  • Went to Newcastle Museum 
  • Got apartment in The Hills area. Costs 340/wk. and is fully furnished
  • Ate at Blue Water Pizza and ordered the Texas pizza.
  • Due to the pizza being way small we ate Fish and Chips from Scotties and took them to the beach to eat.
August 11, 2011:
  • Checked into the YHA Hostel (my first hostel)
  • ate lunch at Scotties on Scott Street; we sat outside at a rickety table just like the travel book stated. The meal was DELISH!
  • Grabbed hot chocolate and a chocolate muffin, ate it at a table on the beach watching the waves crash into the waves. 
  • Ate supper at The Brewery on the Wharf for free with the YHA.
  • Shared an ice cream bar, tim tams, and water on the beach at night.
August 10, 2011:
  • Took our first train ride  to Adamstown to see a potential place to live. We saw the outside and turned right around. The place looked like a cracked out hotel!! SCARY!
  • Took our first bus ride to Charlestown to go to the Apple store. Charlestown is where you have to go for the bigger stores and shopping. 
  • We went to the Typo store in Charlestown Mall and it was AMAZING, heard Conor Oberst playing over the speaker system (heart), and visited the MPLS's love, Target. 
  • For supper we went to Goldeys on Darby Street and had large portions of great food. 
August 9, 2011:
  • Woke up and watched cricket in bed
  • Opened Australian bank account at NAB (Serena helped us..she was great!)
  • Walked Darby Street and fell in love with funky stores and cafes
  • Made friends with worker at Peak Cafe
  • Visited the library!
  • Filled out our census form for Census Night! Takes place every 5 years!!
August 8, 2011:
  • Blew circuit in hotel room by trying to turn on my flat iron
  • Walked & explored NE Newcastle for 6 hours
    • Nobbys Beach
    • Newcastle Beach
    • King Edwards Park
    • Obelisk
    • Hunter Street Mall
  • Saw girl in Minnesota shirt
  • Watched Monday Night Football (Rugby League): Rabbitohs vs. Eels

Lessons Learned (thus far)...

The move to Australia is not only an adventure but a time for Shoave to do some independent self discovery. I plan to use this time not just hanging out with the cutest boy on the beach but to take time to reflect and learn new things about myself.

10 Things I have learned thus far....

1) Sometimes by leaving the country you become closer to your family.  I feel closer to my family than I have the past three years when I lived across the country. I am in contact with them more than I have ever been before with weekly emails, phone calls home, and chatting on facebook or facetime. It feels great to have them in my life, it hasn't been this way for many years. 

2) I don't love roaches...but if needed I can live with them (kind of).  I am not a fan of insects at all, they make me scream like a little girl ( which is funny because when I was a little girl I actually liked insects). This was the first ever experience I have had with roaches and truth be told after awhile you do kind of get used to them, you see them and then you just kill it. Maybe this shows that I can live with other insects or do some extreme living and not hate it so much. 

3) I'm a Negative Nancy and Dave has to be my cheerleader.  Man, I have been miss negative pants more than a few times already since our move here. I get down on really small details and stay in a funk for awhile. I have stated more than once that I am ready to leave and just want to explore and go home. When things are tough I sometimes fold much to fast and easy.  Dave has always been there to be my cheerleader and put things back into perspective for me. I wish I was braver and more adventurous, without getting all in a huff over the little things. 

4) I feel at home in a new place as soon as I have a library card.  This is soooo true! As soon as we got our apartment and finally had an address I asked Dave if we could got to the library and try to get a library card. Once I have a library card, I feel like I am part of the community, cause you know they don't just let any passerby get one! Plus the library is one of my favorite places in any town I live in. (Thanks grandma for instilling this in me!)

5) Australia is uber expensive.  I didn't realize just how expensive Australia was until we moved here. I thought it was comparable to living in the DC area, but nope it's worse. I sometimes worry about how we are going to do all the things we want to do and still have enough money to get back home at the end of it. Just an FYI..a bottle of pop costs $3.45 AUS!

6) I really like watching rugby and believe that more Americans should as well.  Dave played rugby at college when we met, that was really as much as I knew about rugby. They love rugby here in Australia and I finally get why! It's fast paced, aggressive, and the players endure a lot of pain. I watch and am amazed at how the players do it! Since Americans seem to love their NFL, I think they would love rugby. Imagine NFL without pads and constant play, they would eat it up in the States! I can't wait until we got to the Rugby World Cup and watch USA vs. Australia!

7) Unplanned adventures are GRRRREEAAATTT.  The best adventures you have within the day are the ones that are unplanned and unexpected. It's about having no expectations or presumptions and letting the mystery unfold while you are in the moment. Some of the best days we have had here are the ones where we figure things out the last minute and just go with the flow. 

8) I say "cool"/"I want to be cool" wwaaaaaayyyy to much.  I'm not proud of this one, but it's something that I have discovered while here. I have this notion that I am just not "cool" and all that I want to be is "cool". I say it all the time to Dave when describing different things are talking about who I want to become. But really what is even the definition of cool? There isn't why they heck do I care so much of becoming something I'm not even sure what it is?

9) MN is where the heart is.  I think a lot about when Dave and I will move back to MN after Australia. I can't wait to be in Minneapolis and finally start putting some roots down. I think about getting a home, how we will decorate it, get our Winston, be with friends and family, and maybe start our own family. Minnesota holds so many things that I love, I have missed it the past three years we have been gone. 

10) If you have barista skills or know your coffee you probably can get a job anywhere in the world.  This is a skill I wish I had, I don't like coffee or really the smell of coffee, but I do like a good hot chocolate (does that count?).  There are tons of cafes here in Newcastle, some even looking for employees..but due to my lack of skill in this area I am not qualified, hence I am still unemployed. I believe if you had barista skills you could easily get a job in any country because hey people LOVE their coffee. So kids out there go to your local coffee shop or Starbucks, get a job and learn all you can then go travel the world, working as a barista for money to supply the adventures. 

I can't believe we left for our adventure a month ago!
I wonder what things I will learn in this upcoming month.