Please note: Fiji pictures are finally up. And I added to the Hawaii photos as well.
Sorry I went dark there for a few days. I didn't have much to report, other than continuing complaints about the difficulty of finding housing. And the sound of my whining was annoying even to me, so I decided not to pollute the interwebs with it.
1) Summer is here! I don't think it's here to stay, but today was sunny and actually hot (mid eighties)! This is in comparison to the last five days, which felt like late fall in New England. The sun is strong here though (and there's no ozone layer), so even when the air is quite chilly, I've gotten a light sunburn on my face. Anyway, it was lovely to wander around today in the warmth, and definitely improved my outlook on life.
2) I gave up on the hostel. I can only take so much from the drunken Irish and English 19-year olds. My favorite moment was waking up to a bathroom full of puke before my Financial Statement Analysis placement exam on Friday morning. I haven't seen such foulness since freshman year in college. Enough was enough, so I moved up the hill to a guest house. It's not particularly cheap, but I'm splitting the room with a friend, and I don't really know what else to do. I got to the point where I decided I really was willing to pay an extra $20 a night for the privilege of sleep. So now the quiet, and the in-room internet we paid for today has definitely improved my outlook.
3) Most importantly for my state of mind, I think I found housing. Cross your fingers for me that it doesn't fall through. I'll be sharing a two bedroom apartment in Randwick (which is up the hill from Coogee, and is the area right near school). My flatmates are an Italian couple: Sylvia and Gianluca. They seem very nice, and more than anything the apartment was the only one I've seen (and I've now seen 12) that wasn't flat out grungy.
I have to admit to some buyers remorse. First of all, I can't move in until September 25. I have no idea what I'm going to do with myself until then. I can't afford to stay at the guest house that long, and I hate the thought of going back to the hostel. But more importantly, I'm worried about living this far from the center of the city. I haven't seen Sydney at all yet, but I can already tell this area is a bit isolated. It's nice living near the beach, but what's the point of moving to Sydney if I never hang out there? I'll just have to master the bus system I guess.
I did make it to the neighborhood called Surry Hills today. It's not too far from where I've been staying, and is aformerly forgotten and run-down neighborhood that's been taken over by the younger, hipper set. It definitely had a Williamsburg meets the West Village meets Hayes Valley feel. I found a great bakery and was happy as a clam. (Question: why are clams happy?)
The goal for tomorrow (as it was for today) is to finally make it to the harbor, and most particularly the opera house. In the meantime, here are some photos of the amazing wrought iron work that's on some of the buildings around here.