Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Australia - Day 2

I didn't get much sleep due to a roommate who locked herself out in the middle of the night – once I was awake I was awake…. the hazards of a hostel I guess.  I had the bathroom all to myself since no other girls on my floor seemed to be up at 7am on a Monday morning.  After getting ready and trying not to wake my roommates every time I had to go back to the room for something I forgot, I headed down to the café to get some breakfast.  Read the newspaper over eggs, toast, & coffee – so that was nice.  Since our group wasn't meeting until 11:30am I decided to head over to the Ultimate Oz office early and use the free wifi there.  I now know why it’s free.  J  Every 5 minutes it would disconnect and then reconnect.  I couldn't get anything done.  My breakfast wasn't sitting so well with me and I was getting fed up with the internet so I headed back to my room for a bit.

After our meet up and a brief orientation we headed out on a walking tour of Sydney.  There are quite a few people with Ultimate Oz this week.  I’m the only American – most of them are from the UK, with a few Canadians and a few Belgians thrown in too.  We walked towards Darling Harbor where we had lunch, and then we continued on to the Royal Botanic Gardens.  As we came out of the garden we were at the Opera House. 

It seems so much smaller in person, but maybe that’s because we were on the back side.  From the Opera House you can see the Sydney Harbor Bridge.  It was about 4pm by the time we got to the opera house and the tour was over and we were free until 7:30 when we had our welcome dinner.  After I got back (it’s a bit of a walk back to Wake Up from the opera house) I decided to head back to Wicked Travel to see if I could mooch some internet before I had to be at the welcome dinner.  I didn't really count on Jenny being there and not really giving me an opportunity to use the internet.  Sometimes I’m just not assertive enough.  I told her I had come to mooch some internet, but we started talking and I never felt like I had an opportunity to walk away and use the internet.  Needless to say, she talked me through some East Coast bus tours and by 7:30pm I was late, but felt really bad not booking anything because she wasn't going to get commission on it if I didn't at least put a deposit down or something.  I was late and felt so rushed….so, it looks like I’ll be going on a sailing trip in Whitsunday at some point!  I paid for it and she told me to come back tomorrow or the day after to finalize everything…. I nearly ran away to try and get back on time.  I was a bit late, but thankfully not the last one to show up.  I didn't hang around too long after the dinner – but it was a good chance to get to know a little bit more about people.  I've learned quite a few random facts about some of the countries represented in our group.  For instance, in Scotland if you’re Scottish and go to a Scottish University you only have to pay room and board?  And you owe the government the money so once you get a job they just take a percentage of your paycheck and pay it off.  If you haven’t paid it off after ‘x’ number of years they just write it off!?  

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