Saturday, August 22, 2009

Melbourne: RMIT Village

Zzzzz.. Peace in the dark... and barely enough time to realise that time has passed, the bright morning sunshine blasts its way into my room.
Ah yes, the winter sunshine, turn on my 20 inch LCD TV to watch the weather forcast for today: Windy with sun, rain, clouds and clear skies!@#!@!? No joke.. Melbourne city is famous for its 4 season weather in a day. Right beside the TV are some pics of me and BB. Could not paste on the red wall cause the material makes spiderman's sticky webbing look like teflon over a well waxed leg. It just won't stick.
Happen to love my table cause its approximately 1 by 2 meters, giving me all the table space i need. Notice the glass... water is important for health cause it gets very dry due to the
'drought' and wind. Some places in australia has not had rain in 10 years! So a glass of water is always there to remind me to take more fluids.

I look at my bed right after I wake up:
GG.. well, kidding, thats before I sleep. Before I get out of bed, it looks something like this:

Now thats better.. Sometimes i feel like just wanting to stay in bed the whole day. Other times i get out on the wrong side of the bed. I even hit my head once on the top! Well, now that i dragged my fat lazy bum off the bed, what's next? Obviously it will be time for some hygiene. Fancy a 4 minute shower? Thats what australians do.. Due to water restrictions, people here take 4 minute baths! and they have a small hourglass (which drops all the sand in 4 mins). The bath tub is just for show until further notice. If not, fancy a dip in the village pool right below my unit:

So far I have only seen 2 people use the pool, wise for everyone else cause although the pool is heated, the 30 second walk back inside will be freezzzing!! The Village also has a 'gym' which says it all, cause its not a gymnasium.. just call it a gym cause its so small, that you cant stretch to save your life in there!
There is a small kitchen to use but a large fridge. The most interesting thing is that the village has 1 iron and ironing board! and I'm off to use it!

Now that i'm clean, time to visit the city. The roads in Melbourne are so well planned, that it looks like a giant Tic Tac Toe board from the air:
For an exchange student like me, I get 50% discount on most things, including fares and entrance fees to most places!
More to come soon in the next part!

Saturday, August 8, 2009


When in Rome, do like the Romans, when in Melbourne, don't miss the footie as it is called by the Aussies. Australian Rules football is something unique to Southern Australia.

On Friday the 7th of August, a big bunch of MUSEX members (Melbourne University Student Exchange) invaded the Melbourne Cricket Ground stadium. The 50 of us met up at the corner of Flinders Street and Swanston, in front of the Transport Bar at 6pm.

Here's the concession ticket we got, $12.80 for students! Much cheaper than other places in the world. No wonder Australians love their sports.

We took a short walk to the MCG, on of Melbournes two 100,000 seater stadium, which was filled to the brim with eager Aussies. The seats below, are only open to members and the membership list is currently at 50years waiting. The people tell me that fathers buy memberships for their unborn children! Today's game was Geelong Cats vs Carlton and it promised to be a tight match.

The aerial view of the stadium. Trust me, it is huge.

Okay, the Australian Rules Football is really different from other football and here are some key differences for newbies in case anyone asks:

1. The field is the shape of a baseball. Fits into round stadiums!!
2. The are 4 sticks as goals, two short ones beside 2 tall ones. Scoring into the centre space gives most points. No keepers.
3. There are at least 4 umpires, 6 waterboys, 1 guy in flouroscent running around for the most obscure reason.
4. It is started by throwing the ball at the ground!
5. In football, a throw in requires the thrower to throw forward with 2 feet on the ground. In footie, the umpire throws the ball facing backwards with one leg flying up!
6. You pass like rugby but have to dribble like football every 15 metres.
7. It is a very gentle game, tackling is like hugging and the players fall down like men. They get up and don't squeal like lil girls.
8. There are 3 scores, 1 is the total.
9. There are quaters each 30 minutes long, hence 2 hours of play.
10. There are 18 players and hundreds of tiny rules that must be adhered to.

Daylight in the night, 4 ten storey floodlights illuminating every move the players made. The moon was full and the crowd was howling like wolves in the cold. There was also a short fireworks display from the Yarra river nearby. The players were mostly skinheads. These were real men, wearing only their uniforms and muscles n the playing field, they seem to have an inexhaustable source of energy. Kicking, punching, scoring, passing, and tackling was the highlight of the night. What an atmosphere it was, and it would have been greater in the summer warmth.

It was intense and Geelong was a formidable foe. Yet in the end, both teams played well and Carlton emerged champions and will proceed to the next stage. Cheers!

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