As you all know, experiences you have when traveling or moving to a new place forever alter the person you are. Your mind, thoughts, emotions, perceptions, and convictions are marked by each new experience, no matter how minute or magnificent. You grow and learn, even in the worst circumstances, even in spite of yourself.
I spoke to my Dad yesterday, and he asked how I was, and I told him I am well. He knows that I’ve been having a bit of a hard time adjusting, so he told me (as I wrote in my last post) to keep my chin up, and to try to do something new everyday. He advised me to make the most of this new land, to take the time to explore, to focus my attention on new experiences and challenges.
I have been doing this to some degree, but I haven’t really thought about what I have learned or done in just one month that I haven’t before—although many of my friends and my future in-laws have pointed these little victories out to me. My future in-laws recently revealed that they were actually impressed by the fact that I walked home the other night by myself, that I didn’t go to pieces (by the way, I knew before I made that decision that since I’m in an good area, I’d be OK); they thought it was great that I took the subway to Miranda by myself, that I ventured beyond our neighborhood on my own, of my own volition.
Funny how we forget to pat ourselves on the back sometimes, how we forget to recognize our own fortitude. So this is me taking stock of what I have achieved to this point. This is me reminding myself that I’ve come a long way, baby.
- I actually said goodbye to my family, reorganized my life, left my job and the U.S. and came to Oz.
- I found myself a gym and joined it.
- I got myself an Aussie phone number and figured out how to call and text people in the U.S.
- I installed a router so I can work on my laptop wirelessly.
- I learned that a kilo is 2.2 pounds, a rort is a rip-off, a bogan is a redneck, and 22 degrees Celsius is a comfy 71 degrees Fahrenheit.
- I learned that the smallest-sized coins are five cents, the largest are 50 cents, there are no one dollar bills, but there are one dollar and two dollar coins.
- I learned that a size 6 U.S. does not equate to a size 6 Australian, and that here you can have a sparkling chardonnay or a sparkling red, not just sparkling wine and champagne.