First week (9 days) of Melbs

Hi! Today I will write about the first 9 days I’ve experienced in Melbourne (11 in total if counting the two arrival days I wrote about in my last post)!20150718_145548
So I arrived and enrolled to my subjects and got my student ID. One and a half week left before semester and nothing to do with school? Well not quite right. Friday the 16th was off school though. I actually had time to go around the area of Prahran where I live (a suburb to Melbourne City Business District). Plenty of cool bars, stores, old school barber shops and much more. It feels like a hipster area. Very modern but at the same time old. I had finally time to contact my family and the day went pretty fast. Next day, Saturday, was planned for THE AMAZING RACE! A student activity arranged by school for the exchange students. Only 80 tickets for the game were available and I bought one as soon as I knew about it (first day of arrival). We got free lunch to start the day and after that the race startet. We had to get around town to get to know the city, Australian culture and much more! It was an AMAZING Amazing Race!pie20150718_150223

(A Dogs Eye with a Dead Horse (A meat Pie with Tomato Sauce) – one of the items we had to find during the Amazing Race and an Amazing Race Jump)

Well my team didn’t end up winning, but still we got to know all of the city in one day. Okey that’s a lie.. I still don’t really know how to get around. After that a few of the students went out for a drink.. or more like plenty of drinks, which resulted in a slow Sunday pretty much hanging around in the apartment Skyping, which also is needed.

Upcoming week was orientation week in school. Everything from compulsory sessions to lectures about how to be Australian. Very fun and I made a lot of friends! Since I missed the compulsory information meeting on my arrival day I had to go to a new meeting during the week, which was fine since it had to be done! During the first 3 days of the week all students got free lunch and morning tea, BEST THING OF THE DAY.. haha! Monday to Thursday had a planned schedule where I had to attend to sessions and Friday was off.. Well not for me. I had forgot about my Arrival Form that had to be turned in to Malmö University, so I contacted La Trobe and arranged a time to get it signed during the Friday. Oh yea.. I also found a new place to live!! A house about 1 km from school. I will live together with one La Trobe student and a Football player. Feels like a really great place! And I got a Cruiser Skateboard to get around town! And a haircut. Aaand… Well yea alot of things happen all the time! -931331

(My new accommodation – Cute House! 😀 )

Yesterday (Friday) I went out with friends after getting my paper signed. We went down to the Docks to see fireworks and later during the night we went to a sport bar for a drink! The evening ended early and I came home for some late night Skyping!20150724_193756

Today I am trying to clean the apartment since I’m moving to the house next week!

Cheers,

Arriving to Melbourne

Hi! I arrived to Melbourne 8 days ago! So much have happened and I am not quite sure if I am done with everything I need to do before the semester starts. NEXT WEEK!! The 27th.

This will be a long post, but don’t drop out! It will be fun to read, promise!

Lets take it from the beginning. I was supposed to arrive to Melbourne the 13th July to do my registration and enrollment. But due to waiting times with my visa and CSN I had to wait with booking my ticket and it went so far that all normal tickets were all sold out. I PANICKED! The cheapest ticket to Melbourne was 28000 sek, but after a whole day of calling and mailing with TICKET.SE I finally found a ticket for a decent price. What I didn’t get was a decent travel time. Copenhagen to Melbourne should take around 30 hours.. my trip was 50. Copenhagen – Amsterdam – Guangzhou – Melbourne. I had 15 hours in Guangzhou, China. In my mind 15 hours of boring waiting at the airport in China. This wasn’t the case when I arrived. I came to the airport, got checked in to a 5 star hotel, had free rides in town and it was actually really good! Extremely fun to take a short visit in China before the final destination, Melbs! Well I will not talk about my China trip to much, but I actually recommend to take a flight with a long transfer. It doesn’t really matter if it takes 30 or 50 hours to get to the destination.. it’s already extremely boring to travel for 30 hours. Take a 50 hour flight and a mini vacation at the same time!
20150714_143426
Well, I arrived at Melbourne Tullamarine Airport in the morning the 15th, LAST DAY OF ENROLLMENT!!! I was stressed out I had to get to La Trobe University    in time I had 3 hours to get to the compulsory information meeting. 3 hours sounds like a good time span… well not if you realize that there are about 2000 human beings in front of you in a line to get in to the country. One hour passed, Two hours passed, and another half hour and I’m in front of line. I check all my papers and… I forgot the paper that proved that I haven’t visited an “ebola country”. Well it was solved eventually and I was finally in the taxi to school. I registered, ran around school to fix everything I could and then took the bus and metro to my accommodation.

20150716_123237

I was quite lucky I thing. I got to borrow a friends apartment in a really nice area of Melbourne, only problem, over an hour to school, one way. Next day I enrolled to my course and subjects, got my student card and most everything for that week was finally done!
20150717_034055
I did not really have time to reflect over my stay. It was up and down fast forward both days. Was it worth all the stress? YES! It was a relief to be done that quickly and everything worked out fine even though I was late 2 days. Well I think this is it for this post. Next one will be about the first weekend and second week in Oz!
20150717_021252
Cheers!

Goodbyes…

Since I’m only her for one semester, I chose to stay and spend Christmas and new year here. My friends, along with 99% of QMU students have gone home, but as much as I hate goodbyes, I am happy to have met these amazing people and experienced this semester with them. It’s been a crazy 4 months and I am extremely sad that it is coming to an end.

The friendships I made here are ones that i want to last a lifetime. I had no idea what to expect coming into this, and what I got was love, laughter, caring and sharing, silly arguments, a few tears, loads of sweat, funny snapchats, and of course food! I’m going to miss all the parties, the movie nights, the dates, the tea times, the study sessions, the workouts at the gym, the laundry, grocery shopping…EVERYTHING! I am going to miss my QMU family. <3

I plan to visit QMU in the spring because the thought of leaving this place for good is unacceptable!

IMG_6386

IMG_6399

IMG_6427

Deadlines, All-nighters, & Sleep-ins

Unlike many of my friends and my poor law-studying sister, i had no exams. I had essays, a business plan, and a presentation, I did most of it at night in my beloved QMU Library. 🙂 It’s all done now and I’ve been enjoying my time since tuesday 9th dec. Which is probably the reason why i’m sick now for the 3rd time this semester 🙁 Scotland why do you hate me!?
The business plan and interview results are in, got 2 As 😉 , still waiting on the rest, fingers crossed!

Deadlines

Deadlines

All-nighters at the library

All-nighters at the library

Sleeping in everyday!

Sleeping in everyday!

Businessplan with Louis

Businessplan with Louis

Marketing Research

Marketing Research

PR Essay all-nighters

PR essay all-nighters

PR essay done

PR essay done

PR essay submission

PR essay submission

PR Presentation

PR Presentation

PR with Caroline

PR Presentation with Caroline

Hallow….een

No need for an introduction, Halloween was…a disaster! My costumes was a success (Betty Boop) but my friends and I ended up wandering the streets IN HIGH HEELS trying to find a club that wasn’t packed, and later that night, a bus that wasn’t packed. We ended up getting KFC 5 mins before closing time, then waiting for a bus for 2 hours and finally taking a taxi. :/ DISASTER!

betty01

betty02

halloween02

halloween03

kiss

onenight

halloweenstreet

kfc

Hectic September!

Soooo… Back again after a busy month of parties, exploring the city, meeting new people and building friendships, and of course studying *wink wink* No seriously 🙂 studying!

I managed to get sick twice so far, along with most students living in the halls. The nightlife here is amazing which makes it difficult to get sufficient rest.

I’ve been doing quite well on the nutrition front, eating healthy and going to the gym regularly.

salmon & veggies

gym

I’ve been to the beach :D, actually swam in the sea, it was so cold that my body was numb and it felt amazing (I think I just realized why i got sick!). My lovely French friends and I have also been to Arthur’s seat (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur’s_Seat), we climbed all the way up and had a picnic at the top followed by a choreographed dance to “dancing in september”, footage of that might be revealed someday in the future. I have to mention that Mel B from the Spice Girls was in a (what i think was) a festival tent outside just a few meters from the beginning of Arthur’s Seat, I only realized that after we had gone up and was too lazy to run back down to meet her! 🙁

swans

IMG_5161

picnic

picnic

Made it to the top

Made it to the top

Arthur's Seat

Louis

Axel

Louis

at the beach

So far I’ve baked twice for 2 birthdays, and cut 3 guys’ hair. Fun fun fun!

Charline's Bday

my friends

Axel's haircut

Haven’t had so much time to see my baby sister 🙁 I’ll hopefully get to see her more soon assuming my life won’t be as hectic.

I haven’t managed to get to any skateparks yet 🙁 I’m dying to though so as soon as I get a day off and it happens to be sunny I’ll go out and skate.

Oh yeah, one more new thing done, I went to Musselburgh Racecourse for research for one of my courses (Marketing Research). I’ve never seen a horse race live before, it was interesting and quite fun 🙂

Musselburgh Racecourse

I’ve joined the football team and cheerleading but since I’m sick I’ve only managed to show up one time for each. I’ve also applied to do some volunteering with sports. Time time time! Need more time. And MONEY! I need a job… :/ TIME!

Wow I’ve written over 400 words so far 😀 which reminds me that I have an essay of 700 words due next week!

I’m a blogging correctly?!?! :s /Dania OUT!

Queen Margaret Uni

The Parliament

Pub Crawl

Harry Potter

J. K. Rowling handprint

U of G – Week 2

Did you know…

That milk is sold in transparent plastic bags in Canada? Apparently it is much cheaper to buy a bag with 3L of milk than it is to buy 1L or 2L of milk contained in carton. The bag contains within it 3 smaller bags of 1L milk each. However, it is also possible to buy 4L of milk divided into two bags. Fascinating.

IMG_1791

Dear reader,

Another week and yet another blog entry. This time I will be focusing on living on campus, its pros and cons, as well as my observations so far. I will also tell you a little bit about how my lectures went, and, of course, a bit of drama. Brew your tea, add some “half and half”, stir in a bit of honey, take a sip and read on.

Living in the East Village

IMG_1754

First of all, I’m currently living on campus in a residence community called East. As I mentioned in the earlier post the East residence is divided into two parts: Village and Residence. I live in Village. Which is pretty much the “adult” part of town…or village. You get the point.

Moving on!

The East Village is a, usually, quiet and serene area with townhouses. Within the residence is a building merged into the townhouses called The Town Hall. Inside are the mailboxes, laundry room, games room (with tennis and pool tables, and a TV), as well as beverage and snack machines, and a large room upstairs which you can rent.

On the opposite side is a building called East Residence. This is where all the youths usually reside. You can also find a convenience store in there (quite convenient, eh?), the East residence desk, and an ATM.

I have yet to see the insides of the East residence rooms. However, the village townhouses are quite similar to each other, and are reasonably furnished. For example, the townhouse I’m currently living in is shared with three other women other than myself. We each have our own room, and each floor, there are 3, has a bathroom and a shower. Except for the first floor/ground floor which has the kitchen and dining/living room. Quite cozy, too.

Lately I have been referring to Canada as a “zoo”. Why? Well, let me tell you something. I saw a skunk the other week, I see more than 5 squirrels every single day, adorable chipmunks passing by, and there is at least one ground hog in my front “yard”.

IMG_1758IMG_1717

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Suite mates

So far I have, sadly, not been able to properly communicate with my suite mates. They seem to be too busy with their own lives to even care about whom they live with. I managed, however, to have a nice conversation a couple of times time one of them.

Not wanting to be the annoying suite mate I have been ignoring the whole awkward situation and gone on with my life. However, I did send an email to the lot about meeting up. Guess how many replied? So frustrating.

Classes

IMG_1772IMG_1769My first week of lectures was both exciting and disappointing. I ended up dropping a couple of courses due to their irrelevance, and chose three new ones instead. Latin, here I come! However, before I was even able to drop out of my courses, I needed to speak to my programme coordinator, who, by the way, is six hours ahead of me in time. Thank God, he answered quite fast (at 1 AM his time) and I managed to drop and register the courses within a day. Thank you so much Berndt Clavier!

The teachers here, mostly, refer to themselves as professor or doctor X. and, thankfully, they also tell you what to call them. You see, we don’t use titles or prefixes in Denmark or Sweden. Meaning I currently have to restrain myself from calling the professor by their first name. That would be rude unless they told you otherwise.

Something I discovered here in Guelph was the i-clicker. This device is used in class as a tool for multiple choice questions. For example, in both the history courses I am taking we often use the i-clicker during the lector. The professor allows us a certain amount of time to pick our answer, before ending the question and showing us the answers. These quizzes count towards your final grade.

IMG_1744 IMG_1745 IMG_1746

Sincerely,

Lady Diala

U of G – Week 1

Did you know…

that the “Poutine” is a common Canadian dish which originally comes from Quebec? The dish basically consists of fries, curd cheese, and gravy. You can also find different toppings sold at various restaurants and fast food chains, such as a vegetarian poutine.

 10314463_841326935891509_6038750819485502343_n

Dear reader,

This week has been just as hectic, if not more, as the previous one. With the orientation week and its 500+ events, culture clashes from left and right, and a certain juvenile suitemate. The o-week, as they call it here, was amazing. People were everywhere beaconing students to listen to their cause, inviting others to taste some delicious vegan BBQ, get a free book or buy a plant. However, before the o-week was kicked off, Move-in Day made its appearance. It all started on a hot summer day, one busy Saturday morning…

Move-in Day

I woke up early that day excited, and exhausted from the day before. I quickly finished up some dishes from last evening, and went back up to my room, waiting. Didn’t last long since I quickly got bored and decided to clean around the house, watch some TV shows, cook, Skype with my family, print and cut out coupons, and before I knew it, it was quite late in the afternoon. Nobody had turned up yet. Suddenly the front door to the three story townhouse was opened, and in came a girl. The said girl shot me a quick “Hi, I’m Ta ta~.” put her stuff away inside her room, locked the room, and left the house. She came back the evening before classes were supposed to start. That is, four days later.

However, the day after the disappointing “move-in day” another girl moved in. I greeted her with a smile and offered her a hand. Alas! I was, yet again, shot a “I’m La la~.” And she continued with an upset visage “I don’t like it here. I hate this place.” I dared ask why, and was met with a shaking head and another mumbled answer “I really hate this place.”

The third and last girl moved in while I was out busy with o-week. We accidentally met when an RA (residence assistant) rang the doorbell. She was a nice girl, and we quickly agreed on a basic kitchen rule.

Other than these three instances with the suite mates, I haven’t had the chance to actually sit and chat or get to know the people I’m living with. I’ve been trying to strike a conversation, you know, a simple “good morning, how are you today?” and was either answered with a “hi, ok” or a nod. All of them always seem to be in a hurry, and mind you, I have not been constantly trying to get to know them, oh no. I’ve been leaving them alone to their business and stuck to my own. However, none of them as much as communicate with one another. One is always running around (probably sorting things out) or in her room, the second is always in her room and I barely ever see her, and the third prefers to skip classes (since she hates the university, although she assured me that nothing was wrong with it) and watch Bollywood movies with wine all day and night.

The audacity!

YMQ62zq

Pictures from the Orientation Week.

The Pep Rally

Putting aside boring residence problems, I would like to tell you all about my pep rally experience. However, first I presume I must clarify the term itself. A pep rally is intended to “pep” (energize) an audience before a sports game. The whole point is to get people excited and pepped. That is in briefer terms: to encourage the school spirit. The whole pep rally is seen as a huge support to the team who will be playing and cheerleaders usually also show off some dance moves and keep the audience cheering.

My role in this:

Each on-campus and off-campus residence community was divided into several groups of students. You’ve got North, East, South, West, and the off-campus living students. East was divided into East Village and East Residence/Side. And East side/residence was also divided into smaller groups, depending on the different names of their buildings. The whole dividing act was also applied on the other residence communities. I live in East Village, and had to pep with my fellow EV’s.

We got a t-shirt with the residence logo on (a monkey holding a banana in my case), and we were to learn some “dance moves” within a couple of hours before the actual event. Fantastic! Everybody was nervous and we all complained about not having had enough time to practice. Nevertheless, the pep turned out well. We danced, bumped into each other, and had a laugh. An overall great and unique time was had.

hGfPeAO

Pictures from the Pep Rally.

Niagara Falls

Naturally, if you’re in the area of the famous waterfalls you ought to pay them a visit. START International had such an event planned, and I quickly signed up for it. I’m so glad I did. The Falls were absolutely astonishing. Although, I must say the pictures and videos I have seen of them kind of make them look bigger than what they actually are. Don’t get me wrong, the Falls are quite huge and sprayed a shower-like mist whenever you got close. My point is, don’t expect them to be covering the entire area like I did. Because they don’t.

Moving on, my group and I were guided to a big cruise-like boat and were given a plastic poncho which was supposed to protect us from the “mist”. I’m glad I brought my raincoat with me. Because the “mist” was like a shower, a heavy shower of rain which made me laugh in delight. The experience was quite hilarious. Though I do think I’m one of a group of few who found it so.

The remaining of the time my group and I took a long walk around the area, which looked strangely Americanized, and we ended the whole trip with a visit to Hershey’s Chocolate Factory.

TL0B5R4

Pictures from the Niagara Falls trip.

Sincerely,

Lady Diala

Pre-Autumn Semester Shenanigans – Week 3

Dear reader,

I finally arrived to Guelph on the 26th, and was thrown right into a neatly scheduled breath taking, feet exhausting, sweaty, hilarious, bonding, and welcoming three days. I cannot express with my current vocabulary how much I enjoyed this three day event with START International and its amazingly talented team. Here you have a snippet of the shenanigans I was so blessed to be a part of:

Caesar Windsor

However, before we move on to Guelph I would like to talk a little bit about this casino my uncle so kindly invited me to. Don’t get me wrong, we didn’t play, but we did get a delicious taste of the amazing Market Buffet located in the heart of the fancy place. They had everything from international food to salads of all kinds, and an enormous ring buffet filled with sweets. My favourite dish was the Pasta Your Way section, where you had the choice of various meats, fish, and bird. Afterwards you get to choose the pasta type you prefer, along with a souse. Delicious.

U of G – START International Day 1

I woke up at 6 AM sharp to get dressed, eat a healthy breakfast (just this once), and head towards the University Centre. On my way I was greeted by several brave squirrels, brave because they dared come close rather than run away, and a few students. An overall good morning.

Upon arrival to the UC I found the registration table, registered, signed up for the trip to Walmart, and chose East Side Mario’s as my preferred restaurant to eat at in the evening. Had I ever been to the restaurant? No. However, Italian rarely disappoints.

The trip to Walmart was through your typical American, yellow school bus. The shopping itself was quick and smooth.

Upon return we all, international students alike, went back to our residence to get rid of the burdens of dorm room essentials, took a bath (well I did), and went back to the bus stop area by the UC. There we took a regular bus, our group led by a START International worker, to the Italian restaurant. On our way we all chatted, got to know one another, and had a laugh at how silly the idea of “milk in bags” sounded.

The restaurant itself was very noisy and stereotypically Italian decorated. The food was amazing and so was the service. They we tipped well for that.

We went back to our separate dorm rooms by foot, and had a long talk about TV shows, books, the weather, culture and expensive dairy products on our way there.

The START International team also had a games night arranged. Fun, loud, and ridiculous would be the appropriate terms to use for this event.

U of G – START International Day 2

I started the day with a well-planned breakfast (leftover pizza from the day I arrived), and went by foot to the UC. The place was crowded by happy-tired students, who stood in three long lines. One queue led to the registration table (you would get a tag with your name and country flag on it), a second to the bowling registration table, and a third that led to the breakfast buffet. The said buffet consisted of tea, coffee, and hot chocolate for drinks. Scones, muffins, cinnamon buns, jelly filled puff pastry, and fruit for food. What a way to start a morning, eh?

After “breakfast” we went down to the basement, named Peter Clark Hall. On our name tags we also had a number indicating the table we were to sit at for the rest of the day. Skipping through the funny and very informative presentations given by university staff members and the 12th Councillor herself, Leanne Piper, we were invited to lunch; three tables at the time. Wraps, dessert, and drinks were supplied to everyone in big numbers. After we got our food we went back to the table assigned to us, and started socializing some more.

I met people from all around the world that day. You name the country and/or continent and I can assure you that I’ve met at least one person from there. Amazing. Not only did I meet people through the exhausting Campus Chase, but also through simple incidents such as having a person open the door for you, inside the elevator, at the stores, and even at the bathrooms! People are so incredible nice it’s almost suspicious. Maybe I’m just paranoid.

We ended the day with a noisy dinner, again, and went back home from fear of having a skunk spray us. Yes, I actually saw a skunk. On-campus. I’m loving Canada already.

U of G – START International Day 3

Once again, registration and breakfast at the UC.  We had several people come up on stage and present or explain rules, buildings, the weather and what to wear, and we were also advised to visit the services fairs which not only gave away neat freebies, but also encouraged us to join their movements. Interesting.

After the supplied lunch, we took a quick city tour in Downtown Guelph, before ending the day (well for me mainly) at Diana Downtown, an Indian restaurant.

This will be the last post related to the Pre-Autumn Semester Shenanigans. I’m, finally, going to start my long awaited semester at the University of Guelph on the 4th of September. Please stay tuned for “the real deal”, as they say nowadays, since much more is yet to come.

Sincerely,

Lady Diala

For Illustrated Shenanigans Please Click Here.