well that was the initial plan, but apparently this become a scattered space of my inconsistent ramble and incoherent mumble. I write my heart out, I throw my anger and frustation, I jotted my hopes and dreams, I record my random thoughts here

February 27, 2009

lost in.. orientation

this is one of the most stupid entry, i must say. it will describe how stupid i've been. sigh.

My university orientation start last monday, on the 23rd of february, and from the driver who picked me up in the airport *in the end i did find him and he get me to josh place safely* i got a little red book about the things i need to know once i arrived. So i read, there's a getting started session that was held every weekdays at 11am from January something to march something *i dont remember the dates* so i thought, alright, i'll go and see that on monday! nicely planned. So i got my accommodation sorted on the weekend and i am all good for uni on monday. I woke as early as i could (7 am, noted that) and figured which bus i should take and et cetera. at 10.45 am, i am in the Uni! super, i am sooooo on time! hahaha.. i am follow the sign that say INTERNATIONAL STUDENT ORIENTATION and arrived in a building, called UQ Centre, then i saw soooooo many people crowding the entrance.. i looked around and see a paper that say something like this:

Getting Started Session (compulsory)
For all new international student
UQ Center
14.00 - 15.00

*Jaw dropping expression* Started at two??!!! i should have sleep longer!! why the hell am i woken up at 7 this bloody morning? oh my goodness! but are these people doing here, if its start at 2pm? and why do everyone seems to know each other and they all carrying a blue bag with UQ logo on it? hmmmm... i should figure out.. but before i get to ask someone, i saw everyone walking into the exhibition hall, so i follow the crowd, get myself seated and say hi to a chinese-looking girl who sat next to me. hi, hello and everything, i figured out they're from malaysia and i figured out that the orientation for international student started at 8.30 this morning! what the hell.. why i didnt know this? apparently i need to always check my UQ email. ah, alright. Apparently there's a welcome session for International student where they explain whatever we need to know about the university. Afterwards, i follow the sign that say STUDENT CENTRE to pick up my student card, so i can get concession for the bus. I get in queue, wait for about an hour *its a looooong queue, believe me* until someone with a tag *I can help, ASK ME* come to me and ask, do you enrolled? i give her the bizarre look and ask her, didnt i need to talk with my academic adviser about the course that i need to take? and she told me: thats a very wise idea, but you need to enrolled in at least 1 course in my SI-net, whatever it is, and wait 24h for your student card to be ready, then you can meet your academic adviser, you can always change the course anytime during this week. So i was like.. hmmm.. alright.. so there's no point i wait in this line today. huh! wasting my 1h queuing in the bloody hot sun for nothing! FINEEEEE.. i get back tomorrow..

So i went around, looking for a place to sit so i can do the enrollment. i tried to log in to the internet, but i couldnt! it wont let me in! what is it now? so i went to the AskIT help desk, and the guy told me, no you cant use the internet unless you've enrolled. WTF?! how the hell am i gonna enrolled if i cant use the internet? while all the enrollment is done online? apparently i can open the UQ website to do the enrollment but cant open anything else, ok, so i complete my enrollment and and find my way back to the UQ Center, for the "Getting Started Session"

The getting started session was fun and all, the lady was very informative and throw jokes all around so it was ok.

checking the orientation guide from UQ, i figured out i have a welcoming session from faculty of NRAVS the next day. So the next day i went, and after the orientation we have morning coffee on which everyone was divided in a group, according to their program, i dont hear anyone calling out for Environmental Management, so i ask, apparently, staring from January THIS YEAR, environmental management is no longer with the faculty of NRAVS, its with the faculty of SCIENCE. hmm.. fine.. so i'll have my orientation tomorrow, but i stayed anyway and join the group for Integrated System and Natural Resources Management. Afterwards, we have the FREE BBQ *which i joined anyway* and there, i meet someone who asked me on what i am gonna do in uni, when i told him its Sustainable Development, he asked me if i have any engineering background, that question make me panic. not at all!! oh my goodness! i should really meet my academic advisor to get him explained this to me.

Third Day! its market day in UQ, so i attend another orientation *yey! should really understand my way around uni by this time* and after a long speeches and specific orientation session for environmental management student, i figured out i was at the wrong session, again. i was like.. nooooooooo!!! not anymore!!! aaarrgghh.. apparently it was for UNDERGRADUATE student of environmental management!! the one for postgraduate student will be held at 5pm!! at the school of geography.. ahhh.. fine fine FINE! at least i learn where i supposed to belong to, damn it. But well, in the end, the orientation for postgraduate student is where the most fun are! we mingled, chat, laugh, accompanied with free flow of wine and good finger food, it was nice.. good end for me.. although i kinda forget my way back a bit, and trying google map from campus.. and i figured out somehow.. and i am safely home! dozed off before 9pm.

done with

February 26, 2009

barefoot brisbane

So i take my time getting lost in the city and trying to figured my way back and all these times, i see things thats a bit unusual for me.. like.. i see lots of people walking around barefoot, the first sight was this girl in the airport, she was carrying a big backpack and walk barefoot around the airport, so i thought she lost her shoes or something, but then i saw similar sight in the sidewalk, in and around the city centre, and especially around the university. i saw the sign in QUT campus library about this things, i cant really remember how it sound, *i forget to take the picture of this sign, but i would, later* but i think its something like you have to wear a sandal to enter or no barefoot allowed or somethings, which i think was weird, because at first i thought, who would walk around barefoot? unless you're at home? I mean, In Malaysia, or Indonesia, you wouldn't find a single soul went barefoot to the mall, unless they're GILA *indonesian word for crazy* or something. And, i think, those people wont be allowed to go inside the shopping mall. And in USM *a uni in malaysia, where i went for my undergraduate*, let alone barefoot, you wont even allowed to enter the library and international office if you wear a pair of flip flops! I think this barefoot thingy is like a tie-die fashion in Jakarta, where lots of people (not everyone) were doing it, i mean, wearing it, well, whatever the adjectives are. I thought about taking picture of these people, especially when i saw a lady with her two boys pushing a baby cart walk barefooted in the train station, but i dont know how far manner goes on here, i dont really want to offend anyone with my camera. i was so curious about this so i ask my host, Josh, and he asked me "Why not? the streets are clean.." i put on the bizarre look then he explained to me that its just a way for people to express their freedom, by not wearing any footwear, and they might would like to not wear their clothes either, but it would be illegal, so as far as the law goes, going barefooted is still legal, sort of. I laugh on this explanation. well it make sense, probably the street in oz is clean enough so people could go barefoot and doesnt need to worry that they step on something nasty or sharp or even worse: get a worm infection. well, whatever that is, if these people would ever ask my opinion, i'd say just dont do it in Indonesia! or probably someone could give me another explanation?

February 19, 2009

Australia: a hell of a trip

My first ever trip to Australia, this is how it start..

I check in, get my 25 kg in and proceed to free fiscal section, figured out that i have to pay the fiscal because i just about start my "overseas student activity" - or so the officer said, and i am not a tax payer, so i got to pay the fiscal (around 250USD). geez, after looooong argument with the officer, finally the let me go and give me the free fiscal stamp.

Then i went outside to say goodbye, not long after i heard the calls for passenger departing to sydney, please board the aircraft immediately. My godness! run to the immigration, and got the guy asked me for my immigration card, i forget to get one, so i need to run back to the check in counter and fill up the form and run to the immigration again, from there run to gate D3, panting my breath, finally managed to get onboard. (btw, i have about 10 kg stick to my back).

Sat on the flight for 6 long hour and arrived in Sydney. Going through the customs, declare all my cigarette, wait for the custom guy to check my bag and let me go. walk outside, change some cash and get myself an australian sim card. ok, one thing at the time. i really feel like a cigarette, but i got to cleared my baggage for the next flight, so i went to domestic terminal to check in. It was a bit far out so there's a shuttle bus to take the passenger, and all this time, each time i need to pass the x-ray, i need to take out my laptop, put it in a tray, take off my jacket and belt and empty my pocket. then i sat there, waiting for the bus. I was trying to figured out how to register my new sim card so i can call my mother back home, suddenly the bus arrived and everyone rushing in and i felt a bit panic, i grab all my things and stuffed it in the bag, hop on the bus. was a bit distracted and thinking that i should take some pictures, so i dig on my back to get my camera out. suddenly the bus arrived and i quickly get my things and stuffed them in the bag and in the pocket of my jacket. get off and suddenly realized, where's my phone? couldnt find it in the bag, so i ran back to the bus and i could find it either! what am i supposed to do now? i have i another flight calling for boarding. AAArrrggggghhhh!!! so i logged the lost properties and run for my flight.. Once i arrived in brisbane, i figured out that one of my bag is still in Sydney. FUCK! what is it now? trying to find the driver who supposed to pick me up at the airport but didnt see him anywhere in sight, take out my cigarette and light one, and suddenly an airport official come over to me and point to the NON SMOKING sign. oh gosh, BUSTED. My godness, never once i traveled alone that i come across this much of a trouble..

but it wasnt all gloomy, when i am in desperation, i walk to the taxi ticket counter and turn out telling the security guy there about what happen to me, bla bla bla bla bla bla.. he decided to help me out, take out his phone and ring up someone at UQ pick up services, finally the lady on the other side of the phone told me, just wait at the baggage claim area, the driver will be there in a minute. Huff. one relief. then i meet the driver and apparently he's a really nice old man, very very funny. throwing jokes and laugh all the way to Herston Rd. then i meet Josh, my couchsurfing host and he also turn out to be a very nice guy, very resourceful, patiently answer all my question about the city and uni and stuff. From his place i walk down the road to the bus stop trying to hail one, NONE OF THEM STOP FOR ME.. and i am thinking, again? but suddenly a random guy asked me, "did u see a tall, blond, old, australian guy here a little while ago?" I was like: no, no at all, nobody here since 20 mins ago, i was even trying to hail a bus and none of them stop. he then leave to call someone, and back to me he asked, are you going to the city? i answered yes immediately, and he offer me a ride!!

Too much things happen to me today, the bad, and the good, but brisbane people, are almost definitely friendly. I am glad.

me stranded in the airport after 8 sticks of cigarette, lost my phone, lost my luggage, cant find the university driver who supposed to picked me up, hungry and still waiting..