Can the End Really be Here?

I’ve done it. I have submitted my last assignment for this semester. I’ve done the readings, handed in the essays and completed the tests. Now I’m sitting here as the rest of my friend do their last days of studying contemplating how it is possible for this semester to be over already. Now we all know that uni goes quickly but this is just unreal! Not that I am complaining!

While uni work may be over for four months (yes, a whole summer!) there is lots still to be done. We have to find a house and finalise our summer plans, but that is the kind of admin which I love.  I am hoping to explore a lot of the east coast of Australia in my first few weeks of holiday before meeting up with my family in Cairns on the 23rd, just in time for Christmas. A date that has been in diary, in bold font, highlighted and circled, for months. I wouldn’t say I feel homesick really but I miss being in the circle, knowing what is going on in the family, having that sense of community. I also love Christmas and there is nothing better than spending it with your family. Although I’m not sure it is really going to feel like Christmas this year what with it being 30 degrees and sunny: decorations have already been put up here and I experienced what turned out to be a weird yet wonderful Christmas Pageant the other day.

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So Australia is trying it’s best to embrace Christmas but I can’t help but giggle in amusement when I walk past the snowmen decorations in the centre of town! If there is one thing I miss from home right now it’s the cosy nights in when it’s cold outside and you can see twinkly lights all around as our country settles in front of our fires, accepting of the end of autumn and ready for the magic that is the festive season to begin.

But I’m sure I’ll get over that once I begin my adventures around Australia. My sense of travel kicked in after I spent my mid-semester break road-tripping from Adelaide to Melbourne and Sydney via Canberra. Ten of us went and we hired two mini-campers – essentially cars with tents on top.

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The trip was amazing and the feeling of standing on the bridge in Sydney Harbour, looking out over the Opera House with clear blue skies above was just incredible. Truly a phenomenal view that I believe everyone should see at least once in their lifetime.

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But as I said there is a lot to do before I can take off and be in the wind for three months. There are houses to find, cards to send, flights to book and sadly goodbyes to say. I have met some incredible people this semester but unfortunately many of them are only here for this semester and will be back home in time for Christmas. Although saying goodbye to such great people will be terribly sad, I am pleased to have had the opportunity to know them and befriend them. I never fully appreciated how strong a bond you can make while studying abroad and I am now so glad that I do because I have friends all over the world and hopefully places to stay when I visit!

So for now it’s back to planning – it feels like I’ve come full circle what with the amount of admin I have to do again!

PS. Sorry to have mentioned Christmas so much and so early, I know many of you will be trying to ignore its presence for now!

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