Welcome to Australia

Moments before Arrival

Australia had always been a dream of mine. The flight was not as bad as I had thought it would be; given the vast amount of food that was given during flight, the ability to watch movies on the screens behind the chair, and the pure excitement of traveling. This was a 28 hour journey that I was willing to sacrifice my sleep (most of it) and appreciate every moment while in flight. One loses track of all sense of time while up in the air, especially when your clock is about to be 14 hours ahead. When I saw we had less than 5 hours until arrival, I could no longer focus on any movie, I was soo excited to land and explore this new land, and begin the journey of a lifetime. Finally, 1 layover and 28 hours later, this lifelong dream came true.

Initial Perceptions

It was an early morning when I landed. We had seen the sunrise as we were in our initial descent. After finally gathering all my bags, I stepped foot out into Sydney, Australia. It was cold. I had known it was winter, but I did not initially realize how cold it could actually get in Australia. Apparently, when I landed on August 11th, Sydney had been in one of their coldest cold fronts of their winter. Thankfully, my school, University of New South Wales, had been expecting my arrival and arranged transportation to my hostel.

This shuttle ride gave me the best views and first impressions of Sydney. In this shuttle, there were a lot of solo travelers and prior to leaving America, I had known it was essential for me to talk to people when I entered Australia and to continue to hear other people’s stories, so I would not feel alone in this new place. The ride took me through the Sydney CBD district and through all of the main roads. I noticed an abundance of beautiful scenery and trees everywhere. We went down to Sydney Harbour, where I was able to capture my first glimpse of the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House.

Even in the cold, everyone was outside enjoying the nature around them and hanging out in Hyde Park. This central area had a ton of museums that I made sure to remember to visit. This shuttle ride to my hostel gave me a feel for what life in Sydney could be like as long as I explore and appreciate my surroundings.

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