Since my last post, I have had the chance to travel around New South Wales, Australia a bit more. A little over two week ago a group of my friends and I headed up the coast to a little beach town called Byron Bay. The town was very eclectic as it had a wide variety of people from all over, and all sorts of shops and restaurants. The day we arrived, we got there in the evening so we all walked from our hostel down to the beach for the sunset. The next day, the morning was beautiful so we all took advantage of the warm weather we have been missing since winter has arrived in Australia. Unfortunately, the afternoon and the next day, the whole state of New South Wales was hit with an incredible rainstorm. My friends who were still in Sydney told me that the waves were coming over the seawalls and some even reached the houses. Byron ended up getting a King Tide the day following the storm and I had never seen that amount of huge waves in my life. They kept coming in one after another and flooding the whole beach even at low tide. Madison and I decided to walk all the way down to the end of the beach and climb to the most easterly point of Australia as well as see the iconic Byron Bay Lighthouse. The whole way up to the lighthouse, there were spectacular views of the whole beach and town. The next day we were all flying home because we had to attend our last classes for the semester.
The next weekend our Australian friend, Lucy, brought Madison, Emily and I home with her to Bathurst. Bathurst is about two and a half hours north of Macquarie University and the drive brings you through a part of the Blue Mountains National Park and numerous orchards. Bathurst, as Lucy’s mom was telling us, is the oldest town in New South Wales and still has some of its original structures. Lucy and her family live on a gorgeous farm that used to be the old school house. They have lots of pets including a cat, two dogs, three horses, and loads of chickens. When we got to the farm, Lucy showed us around the grounds and we all had our first wild Kangaroo sighting. Madison, Emily and I tried to get closer to them to get pictures, but they kept hopping away at an incredible pace. The first night, we went to a local pub for dinner with one of Lucy’s hometown friends and then later went to a bar that reminded me a lot like one you would see in Vermont. The following day, we went into town for breakfast and then later went to Lucy’s boyfriends farm for his 21st birthday celebration. The party was extremely fun and we had the chance to meet lots of new people from all over Australia. The next day, Lucy’s mom cooked us an amazing homemade meal and we celebrated their family friend’s birthday. Unfortunately the long weekend went by quickly and we had to head back to Uni the next day.
This week was pretty tough as it was finals week. We all spent the whole week in the library getting ready for all of our exams. Their exam period here last for about a week and a half and I even had an exam on a Saturday! As of right now, I can officially say that I’m a senior in college because I completed my last final exam yesterday. The rest of my week will consist of me packing my bags and getting ready for the arrival of my family on Monday! Looking forward to seeing them, as the last time I saw them was the beginning of January. Luckily, to keep me occupied until they come, this Saturday is the final rugby match in the series between Australia and England, which should be lots of fun! I can’t believe that I’ve been away for 6 months already, I feel as though last week was when I first arrived here. Thankfully, I will get to explore Australia a little more and New Zealand with my family in the upcoming weeks, so I don’t have to say goodbye just yet!