I’m not one to use many cliches, but today you must forgive me this much. So it seems, the mother of all cliches is completely appropriate for my predicament. These past 10 months in Australia have me thinking how much ‘time flies’. It feels like only yesterday that I was drinking Mill St. Organic, and eating poutine like any other day of a Canadian’s life. In retrospect, everything and nothing has been accomplished in this timeframe. I like to think myself an optimistic person, always looking for a silver lining, preferring a glass half full, etc. But if you know me well enough, I’m a pessimistic optimist. Contradiction? Not really. I’m optimistic at heart if that makes any sense, I always want the end result to be wonderful, but my skepticism (passed down from a generation of skeptics) always makes it first in line.
This is the side of me that suggests I have accomplished nothing in the past 10 months. Sure, I’m closer to my goal of graduating, I’ve managed to make a few friends along the way and I’m generally content with life. Bit of a gloomy undertone, right? Well recently, a friend of mine shared the most inspiring post on Facebook about a similar situation, only she skipped the nonsense and took the optimistic approach. The post was about her father approaching her, having the “you’ve accomplished nothing in the last year” talk. And her brilliant response left me encouraged, and stirred something in my heart.
Though that skeptical side of me still exists, I am happy to say it has dulled down immensely in 2014. It would be dishonest to say I am an optimistic person to the core, because let’s face it, I listen to way too much Smiths to be jolly. What I can say with confidence is that my optimism has flourished, and with the help of my dear friend who was brave enough to share her journey in a Facebook status, I can share my accomplishments in these past 10 months with absolute dignity. If you don’t think much of them, that’s perfectly fine. At this moment in my journey, personal reflection matters a fair deal more to me than anything else. Sidenote, if you’re a woman and you’re feeling the same way, I recommend watching Disney’s Mulan, she had similar challenges and she’s an absolute legend/badass/ninja.
Accomplishments since arriving in Australia (all equally fulfilling might I add):
- I arrived in Australia unscathed! There were Canadians on Air Malaysia’s Flight 370. I can’t help but count my blessings.
- Got a tattoo! And a Harry Potter one might I add, truly a fulfilling moment in my life.
- I’ve survived 3 run-ins with snakes. Australia is dangerous! Apparently they only come out for me, many of my friends who have lived here all their lives have had no such encounters.
- I joined a netball team. Might I add, I youtubed ‘how to play netball’ an hour before the first game. 15 games later and no wins, but who cares! It’s a ball (pun intended).
- I’m in the Coffee Master program. For Starbucks die hards, you know what this means. I never managed to get my foot in when I worked for Starbucks in Canada. Only 22 stores in Australia, makes me feel like a valued partner, not another number.
- I survived a vegemite ambush. My friend sneakily put it in the gravy sauce that she made to accompany our steaks. Thankfully, a few glasses of water and laying down did the trick.
- Wolfmother has come out of their hiatus. Honestly, I never thought the day would come. Not to mention, their new album is incredible. I count this as an accomplishment of answered prayers.
- I’ve finally read ‘that’ book. All readers have that one book that changed the game for them. The book that they will always remember, the one that spoke to their hearts, recommend to everyone, etc. Well I can finally say that I read that book during my time in Australia.
- Australian slang integration. I no longer address customers with my signature “Hiya, how are you?”. I’m all about the “Hey, how ya going?” Who would’ve thought. Also, “far out!” has substituted f***… which is great on a number of levels haha. I’ll let you know when I’ve used fair dinkum properly, gosh that will be a sight.
- This blog! I’ve wanted to get one up for years, but surely it wasn’t meant to be until I started this incredible journey in Australia. Life in Markham would have eventually turned it into a food & bubble tea blog.
Hmm that’s all for now, I will be sure to follow up with a similar post at the end of the year!