With the end of the semester so close it seems as if time is moving at twice its regular speed. All of sudden assignments are due, travel dates are approaching, finals are near and all with just under a month left in Melbourne. It is overwhelming mixture of emotions a person can feel all at once and yet I know many international students are feeling the same way.
Just as classes finish up I had planned a trip to New Zealand’s South Island with Ali and although we knew things would not go perfectly we did not account for all the issues that arose; the main issue being money. A majority of our money was gone due to insurance deposits, camper rental fees, and gas. This was a big speed bump in our trip which kept us on our toes and put us in some difficult situations, from cooking pasta on our gas stove as the sunsets to cheering on the car with the gas light blinking and a few kilometers till the nearest gas station. Although the trip was riddled with frustrating moments it also had some spectacular views. It was remarkable hiking up mountains and camping alongside their snow-covered peaks. Although skydiving and bungee jumping was outside of our price range, I also think I needed a bit more time to mull over the thought of jumping out of a plane or over a bridge. This country had many breath-taking sights and even driving to our next location offered views of nearby mountains and endless plains. A majority of the time Ali and I could barely believe any of it was real and compared them to a green screen image. Ten days is not enough time to admire everything New Zealand had to offer and I hope to return with at least a month and a slightly larger budget.
Tomorrow I return to Melbourne with a final exam the next day. Australia’s education system puts much less attention on assignments and throughout the semester and instead focuses on final exam and/or projects. Yes, I have been avoiding my final on Wednesday with all my might yet the time has come for me to really focus and study for this final. It is stressful thinking about these last grades to finish up the semester but it eases my mind knowing that my boyfriend will arrive hours before my exam that morning. Terrible timing in my opinion however I know once I finish the exam I can return home and show Pedro around this incredible city. I have been writing down all my favorite locations to show him around including the street art at Hosier Lane, Fitzroy, and the many art galleries in Melbourne. I will also be returning to Cairns and the great barrier reef for a few days with him and Ali so they can see just how beautiful the reef is up close. I am so thrilled to revisit my favorite locations here and to make a whole new set of memories.
I am eager to return to Melbourne and yet sad that I won’t be there for much longer. I was stressed while in New Zealand but also so overjoyed I could see so many breathtaking views. I am a little worried for my finals yet also so glad I could experience Australian courses. I am overrun with different emotions that this semester has brought but I am also humbled knowing I was able to have such an incredible adventure. It surprises me when I meet people who have never left Melbourne or Australia. There are so many awe-inspiring sites in the world and I feel everyone should try their best to see what they can. I read a quote that I couldn’t agree more with by Saint Augustine which goes, “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”