Today marks eleven weeks since I’ve been in Australia. While I am shocked and sad that the five months are moving so quickly, I am happy to say that I have settled into my new life here rather nicely, and that I am enjoying each of my days living in Gold Coast. I didn’t know what I was going to write about this week, so I decided to throw together some reasons why I love living in GC.
#7- Shoes are almost always optional
You know you live in Gold Coast when its socially acceptable to walk about the town, campus, or parks without shoes. Today, I was shopping around in Patagonia and this lady walked in clad in hippie workout clothes, a baby coddled in a wrap against her chest and, yes, you guessed it, no shoes. I had always heard that Gold Coast was super laid back, but it never really dawned on me just how laid back. I will say, however, how nice it has been to pretty much live in bathing suits and gym clothes and to walk around with a bare face all the time. It’s a nice change of pace from the hectic city life I know and still love.
#6- The weather
Okay, I was definitely a little naive to think that it doesn’t really ever cold out here…. But boy was I wrong. When I first got to Sydney in mid August, I was expecting a continuation of the hot summer I had back in the US. I was aware that it was winter, but I guess in my head I thought it would still be in the 80’s in the winter.
Once I absorbed the shock that it is not in fact always hot here, I realized just how beautiful the weather actually is. At its coldest, winters in Gold Coast reach about 60 degrees, and it’s generally always sunny. Since we’re into spring now, it generally hits about 75-80 during the day, making for perfect surf and beach weather.
#5- Tim Tams
For those of you who have never heard of Tim Tams or had the pleasure of eating one, I feel genuinely sorry for you. They are the reason why I’ve gained three pounds since I’ve arrived here. The anatomy of a Tim Tam is composed of two layers of chocolate malted biscuit, separated by a light chocolate cream filling, and coated in a thin layer of textured chocolate. Pure bliss.
#4- Justin Lanes Pizza
Having lived in Boston for five years, I consider myself pretty spoiled when it comes to good eats. And I have to say, the food in Australia has been generally underwhelming. Finding Justin Lanes was like finding a little piece of heaven. Out of this world cocktails, pizza, pasta and an adorable rooftop bar overlooking the beach. Sorry Mom and Dad, that explains the unreasonably high credit card bill last month.
#3- Burleigh Heads Beach
Gold Coast has beautiful beaches, all just an arms reach away. Currumbin, Coolangatta, Broad Beach and of course- Burleigh Heads. Turquoise and crisp waters, soft sand, and surfers paradise high rises off to the left, its my favorite place to kick back after class and work are over.
I haven’t been to Brisbane a bunch, but from what I have seen, I love being just an hour away! It offers a completely different feel from Gold Coast, one that feels less artificial. I had the pleasure of taking a trip there this weekend and I was so glad I did. My friends and I stayed in a really nice hostel for a night in Fortitude Valley in the CBD and spent the night bar hopping in the area. We finished off the weekend making the trek outside the city to the well-known Piggyback Café for the their famous rainbow lattés. I’d say the $40 uber was worth it.
#1- The people
Australians are genuinely wonderful people. I can’t say that I have met a bad one yet. They are so warm, welcoming, and laid back, exactly what I was hoping for when making the decision to come here. I’ve also noticed something rather interesting in my time here- there are NO fat people. It’s actually shocking. Wake up America- stop feeding us poison and putting cancer causing agents in our food.
Last but certainly not least, I consider myself so lucky to have found an incredible group of people out here. We all come from different places, but that’s what makes our group so wonderful and unique. Being over 10,500 miles from ‘home’ doesn’t even feel far anymore. Saying goodbye to them in 58 days is not something I’m not looking forward to.
- Pneumonia and other internal illness have finally left my body and I’m finally feeling 100 times better! (Sort of)
- For those of you who have seen my snapchats and are wondering why my foot is the size of a large potato, I had a little accident at a trampoline park on Friday on my study break. No broken bones, just a torn ligament, super nasty bruising and swelling (a bad sprain).
- ***Yes, I will still be bungee jumping this weekend***
Next destination: Queenstown, New Zealand 27 October 2016