Will anything ever be true?

To some, this is a question too far away from reality to take even a little bit seriously. To me however, it is a daily struggle. I have discovered myself to be a true perfectionist, especially when it comes to things other people have to see. Like a blog post, or a picture on Instagram or even just my outfit. It is partially because I don’t like to get negative spotlight in any way, and because I “fear” what others might say. Though I am good at telling myself to “fuck what they think”, it doesn’t work with what they say. I am too sensitive to receive criticism without letting it bother me, and I am too introverted to enjoy it when someone wants to talk with me about a personal topic. Of course there are exceptions, and that leads me back to the title of this post: Will anything ever be completely true?

Now you have seen, that even when I try to make a rule about something as simple as if I like something or not, I can’t say anything for sure. Many days I hear people say that they “absolutely hate something” or the opposite, and it always makes me think how they do it. How can you hate or love something to the bottom of your soul? And I am not talking about people, because I realized (or accepted) long ago that this love is completely irrational and, I guess, indescribable. Love is one thing, but how come someone can absolutely hate nature, cities, children, reading, running or a certain type of food? Aren’t we just saying this because we feel like we have to say something? Someone who hates nature, will maybe like it someday if he somehow combines it with something (or someone) he loves. Same goes for loving a certain type of food – one day you might have a bad experiences or learn something new, that will change the way you taste it.

Something could be true, like completely true, right now that’s for sure. In a minute, it might not be true anymore. If this is our definition of true, that it just have to be true in this instance, then yes, there is such a thing as something completely true, real and honest. This, however, is a vague definition of a word and it sure isn’t the one you should go for if you ever want someone to trust you. You should probably not doubt everything either. We can like and dislike things, and we can change our minds. I know for myself that I am both a complete paradox and a teenager, so I think I have the right to change my mind. Really, anybody has, it’s a free world.

Because of my perfectionist nature, I do not believe this question to be answered yet and it probably never will. Though I do think this blog post is as perfect as it can be now.

My (very challenging) new years resolutions

At the moment, I tend to think of 2016 as a tough year for me. But it really wasn’t that awful, it just wasn’t living up to my expectations. I wasn’t living up to my expectations. I had great experiences, and to be real, I did things I had never imagined I could do. Such as going by myself to the other side of the globe. And I wasn’t even scared. I sometimes forget to remind myself what a huge step I took at that point. Normally, I will look back and regret all the things I didn’t do.

So. Next year I will try not to strive for perfection. I will try to lower my expectations, and applaud myself when I do well. That will be very very very hard for someone like me. I am never really satisfied, and I never really believe those who tell me I have done well.

I have many strong emotions, which is great at times. When they are good, I can get high on happiness and joy. The bad emotions on the other hand, can leave me feeling completely devastated. For some reasons, the strong emotions make me feel alive, but they also really tear me down. I surround myself with my overwhelming emotions, because I think it will make me happier. I don’t think they ever will. I should let go of them. I should be able to tell the difference between what is good and what is not.

I have had a bit of a love-hate relationship with meditation, as I do not like letting go of my thoughts. My thoughts and emotions are also the ones to give me inspiration, and I would hate to not be able to feel inspired. Inspiration can be tiring though. It is not always I have enough time to do anything about it, so it often just drains me, and makes me feel like I never do anything.

I will try to figure out where my on/off switch is in the new year. I really need it. I will accept meditation or yoga as a way of letting my thoughts go, and I will let them go. I will dive into books when my world is overwhelming and I can’t handle things. I will turn off my thoughts at night, because it really is a daily struggle to fall asleep when your mind insists on composing a story or coming up with ideas to solve all your problems. Catch me in the morning, will you?

There might be a reason why I really love the song ‘Let it go’ even though I am not really the right age-group for ‘Frozen’. I know I need to let it aaaaaaall go. And now, if you will excuse me I will jump to my yoga mat.

I don’t like small-talk, but I hate the absence of it

Being an introvert, I prefer more meaningful conversations as supposed to small-talk. Talking about something that doesn’t really matter on the long run really drains me, and this human contact seems almost unnecessary. I mean, who actually finds it interesting to know someones life story without knowing how they feel about it? That to me is like getting a lot of presents without opening them. But I guess some prefer the pretty packaging instead of the ugly sweater from grandma? Though the packaging is store-bought and the sweater is homemade. Sorry, I will not go deeper, but I think you got the point.

On the other hand, I also get absolutely freaked out when someone skips the small-talk. When they talk to you as if they had known you forever, but you actually just met. Skipping name, hometown and favorite hobbies, and going straight to biggest goal in life. Like, how do you even think someone would open up that fast? I cannot do that. It might also be because I don’t know the perfect answer to that question, which I prefer to do. I do not like to be asked something I don’t know the answer to.

I know, it doesn’t sound easy, but conversations aren’t easy. At least not to me. And if you think they are easy, it might be because you don’t really think about what you actually say. Don’t drain me with boring facts, but don’t expect me to tell you everything. Keep it to something that interests us both, without being to personal, and you might be getting me as a friend soon. One step at a time.

Godset: En erindring

Mange juleaftner og sommerferier i min barndom er blevet tilbragt på Godset, min farmor og farfars tidligere hjem. Dette er ikke ment som noget særligt sentimentalt, men bare lidt billeder og tekst, så stedet aldrig bliver gemt og glemt (hvilket godt nok jeg tvivler på).

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På højre side af denne grusvej, der altid får bilen til at bumle når man kører på den, er en mark. Somme tider er den dækket af blomster, somme tider af får. Jeg må ærligt indrømme, at mere præcist kan jeg ikke beskrive den mark, selv efter utallige besøg. På venstre side er der en mark jeg har stiftet et lidt nærmere bekendtskab med. Den har jeg og min søster vandret igennem op til flere gange, hver eneste december. Det er juletræsmarken, og den er forbundet med både minder og traditioner fra den kolde årstid.

Hoveddøren på Godset

Hvis man vender sig om fra forrige billede, og går lidt til højre, er det her hvad man ser. Som mindre brugte jeg aldrig denne dør, og blev overrakset hver gang der var nogen der gjorde det. Derfor ville jeg tøve lidt med at kalde den hoveddøren, selvom jeg tror, at det var intentionen.

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Noget af det foregående må jeg nok tage i mig igen, for den dør blev flittigt brugt til hurtigst muligt at komme ud til kirsebærtræet. Hvert år lige når kirsebærrene blev modne, ville man kunne finde samtlige medlemmer af familien, på skift i gang med at ribbe træet for de røde bær – gang på gang med en gevaldig mavepine som resultat. Dog husker jeg som helt lille at tøve lidt med at indtage træet. Min tøven skyldtes aldrig bærrene, der ikke fejlede noget, men derimod de summende bistader lige ved siden af. Mange år, og et par enkelte bistik, har det taget mig at acceptere biernes tilstedeværelse. Dette har nok skyldtes en god blanding af kirsebærsult, og den større medlidenhed der blev udvist for den døde bi, end for mig og mit bistik. Forståeligt nok, for uden bier, ingen honning.

Drivhuset

Skævt billede eller ej, så ser drivhuset lige så idyllisk ud som det altid gjorde. Placeret lige udenfor køkkendøren, er det et meget benyttet sted. Det har lagt hus til både tomater, kyllinger og regnsky mennesker der insisterer på aftensmad i det grønne. Altid duftende, og til tider forfærdeligt varmt, er det en lige så essentiel del af huset som køkkenet selv.

Terassen

Her er huset set fra sin bedste side efter min mening. Man får både staudebedet, terassen og huset med. De utallige blomster til venstre synes altid at blomstre, i forskellige farver efterhåden som årstiderne skifter. Med dem i baggrunden, virker det at sidde på den ujævne stenterasse som det rene paradis. Ikke at der er noget i vejen med stenene, andet end at de i sommermånederne ofte er dækket af gåselort.

Gården

Ikke nok med den ene skønne terasse, findes også gården. På en solrig sommerdag er gården det absolut varmeste sted, da det er helt vindstille. Jeg husker ikke hvor mange gange jeg har skoldet mine bare lår på det sorte træ, eller spist en efterhånden godt lunken leverpostejmad.

Gæs og ænder

Indhegningen ovenfor, var hjem til en flok med gæs og ænder. Min søster gjorde altid et stort nummer ud af at undgå gæssene, der kunne være noget så frække med at nappe i bare tæer.

Svinehuset

Med en knirkende dør og et koldt stengulv, har svinehuset aldrig været mit yndlingssted, men der er noget ved duften af det kolde rum på en sommerdag, der altid greb mig. Det var nok egentlig mest det, at det var dejligt velkendt.

Hønsehuset

Herinde findes hønsene. Som lille husker jeg at min kusine kastede sin træsko efter den nærgående hane, når vi var inde i indhegningen. Da jeg senere gjorde hende kunsten efter, blev det ikke just godt modtaget. Altså, hverken af hanen eller de andre der var med mig inde i indhegningen.

Redskaber

Ikke ligefrem et billede der viser særligt meget om selve grunden, men bare en måde man kan vide hvem der boede der. Spand og skovl er selvfølgelig flyttet med, så min farmor og farfars nye sted, minder skræmmende meget om Godset. Dette skyldes ikke kun spand og skovl (selvfølgelig), men det at det er dem der bor der.

Køkkenhaven

Køkkenhaven er et projekt jeg altid har beundret dem for at holde ved lige, på grund af dens helt enorme størrelse. Selv køkkenhaven i den nye have skal nok blive imponerende, når det engang bliver sommer igen.

Gyngerne

Gyngestativet har jeg ikke brugt siden jeg var lille, så det er ikke det største savn. Minderne er nok bedre end oplevelsen af at gynge igen ville være. Hvis det giver mening.

Høne

Dette var, og er sikkert stadig, et helt fantastisk sted, som i lang tid har været tæt forbundet med min farmor og farfar. Dog må jeg indrømme, at efter jeg har set dem istandsætte et nyt, dog langt mindre, hus med have, føles det som om de altid har været her. Når først jeg har lært hele den lille grund at kende, tror jeg, at det sted vil blive mig ligeså kært som Godset. En skønne dag kommer der måske også en hyldest (helst ikke erindring) der omhandler Lillegården?

Yes, these are all just normal thoughts to me

This all popped into my head while I was attempting to draw. Somehow this makes more sense to me than if it was three times as long. Which is normal, I guess. Or not. Who knows. Don’t take this too seriously, if this is not your thing.

She was so quiet that she could hear, not only her own but others thoughts

How could anyone know anything about her when she did not?

The more she thought, the less sense it made

They had the best relationship. Until he found someone else, and she realized that it had never been.

Because she hated conflict, she became a problem-solver

The less they knew, the more she could surprise them

People understood what she said, but it was not what she meant

 

Amsterdam adventures

I gave my sister a trip to Amsterdam for her 18th birthday. Win-win situation for me, as I got to go with her. We went away this Monday, and came back yesterday. We have done so much, and yet so little. We have seen a lot of tourist attractions, but far from all of them. But I took some pictures (and my sister did as well) to show here.

We flew to Amsterdam from Copenhagen on Monday morning. It was a short flight, so we arrived around 10:30 at the central station in Amsterdam. After dumping our baggage at our AirBnB place, we took of to the zoo. We were still totally lost, and while walking along the zoo outside the fences, I was sure we could not get in. But of course we did. The place is called ARTIS, and is apparently both a zoo, a botanical garden and an aquarium. No complaints there. The part about the botanical garden made the place so much prettier than the average zoo, and they somehow managed to make even the fences look pretty. One of the reasons may have been, that the fence in many cases was water. Water instead of fences, is funny enough not a surprise in a city like Amsterdam, as it is basically made of canals. Sadly enough, I forgot to bring my camera to the zoo. I did have my phone though, and managed to snap a few pictures, which was extremely necessary as we bought poffertjes (Google it).

Artis pumpkins

As the two spoiled kids we are, we bought pizza for dinner that day. The explanation was how tired we both were, which definitely was true. We went to bed at 8 pm every day on that trip… It did cause some good though, as we needed the energy for the next day. We rented bikes as soon as the store opened at 10 am. We both love riding bikes, so it got the mood on a whole different level. The bikes were yellow, which was also a plus.

Yellow bike

We went into the biggest park in Amsterdam, called Vondelpark. I think we drove around for a couple of hours, because suddenly it was lunch time. Well, it probably wasn’t a surprise it took us that long, as we are easily distracted. By trees. And ducks. And flowers. We are pretty silly most of the time on holidays, and this was no exception. We were quite healthy in our choice of lunch (salad), which we ate on a wet bench. We tried to make it a cute little “oh we are just eating this delicious salad”-setting, but really we were just cold and wet. But that does not matter if the company is good right?

That day, we also went to the Albert Cuyp Market, as you can see in the background of the picture below. In front of it is a cute café, where we didn’t actually eat. This was just moments before it started raining. And it did rain a lot. We dried ourselves in Starbucks, because they have WiFi…

Cafe

That day we also went shopping, and handed in the bikes early. Dinner was consumed at a nice Italian place, where the waiter called us ladies, and captured my heart just like that. Oh boy, I love to be called a lady.

The next day was also meant for shopping, but that was all right with us. We spent the first half of the day spending money, and went on as we ate lunch. We had Dutch pancakes, one savory and one sweet. To share. I think the savory was with salmon and avocado (yes please) and the sweet was with apple crumble and ice cream. This might be the reason, why we walked all the way to the Rijksmuseum afterwards. Both that museum and the modern art museum was free for children (18 and below) which was great.

Beside the pancakes

Oh yeah, that day we also went in a Ferris wheel, and saw Amsterdam from above. That was amazing. We also had Italian for dinner once more.

Ferris wheel view

The last day, we had to carry all of our stuff around, which made it quite hard to get anything done. I had ordered an Open Boat Tour, which apparently was a private tour in a little boat. Just me, my sister and a lovely Dutch lady. It lasted for 75 minutes, and she told us a lot about the city. For example that the houses are so narrow because when they were build, you payed for the piece facing outwards. They also lean forward a bit and have a hook just below the roof, to make it easier to move stuff in and out. If they lean to the sides however, it is the result of building houses on a swamp. On wooden poles. She also told us the names of the canals, but I have forgotten those. We also talked about the drug laws in Holland, the politics and also the history. It was all really interesting.

Boat tour

The rest of the day was spent waiting for our flight home. We had loads of fun, and giggled most of the times. We also had tiny sisterly discussions, but that was nothing compared to the amount of new exciting stuff we did. Go to Amsterdam if you like water, rain, unique shops, beautiful houses, umbrellas and friendly people. As the lady in the boat said, please don’t do it just for the drugs. That is not fun for the people living there. Instead, embrace all the little cute places and open your eyes for the city’s culture.

Hope you enjoyed the little insight in our trip to Amsterdam, and that it inspired you a bit.

Going home

I could change the name of my blog

Well… it has been a while! It is not that I haven’t written anything, but I have deleted it all again, because it just wasn’t right. So! Now it is, and I am publishing my first blog post after I moved house. Or to say it right, after I moved from house to apartment. To be precise, I now live on 5th floor. That’s why I thought, that I totally could get away with changing the name of my blog to  “The view from fifth floor”, because moving all the way up here has definitely changed my perspective. Which is why I find it appropriate for me to even write a blog – I see things from a  different perspective than so many others. But I guess most people do that…

Plants

Anyway, moving all of my family’s crap from a quite big house to a rather small apartment was pretty strange. We have cleared out more stuff than I could ever imagine, but it has been worth it. Even though I feel like every empty space in my room has been filled with more stuff than what it actually could fit, it works. Having a smaller space and lesser stuff is good. I have come to a point, where I could take almost every little object in my room, and argue why I left it there. I guess that is good?

Clothes rack

Not only do we have less indoor space, we have also moved from a small town to the city of Copenhagen. The Copenhagen package included noise, no ventilation and loads of stairs, but it also means a roof terasse with amazing sunsets, everything just around the corner, and people everywhere. Wait. Is people everywhere really good? Nah, sometimes it is frustrating and tiring, but sometimes it is good. It is good when you crave company and conversations, or a helping hand every now and then. Which you do. Even though I catch myself complaining about the crowded streets, I also find that I grow for every day I spend in the crowd. I learn how to let them in when I want to, and shut them out if I need to.

Flowers

Okay, so that was it for now, I will return with an update on the categories on the blog, where I might change a few things… Next week, I will hopefully also be posting something, as my sister and I are going to Amsterdam for a couple of days!

Ciao

Week 5: Mildura

Monday morning I woke up still in Colignan, so the clock said 6:30. It was freezing cold that morning, and the first bus was also cold. After two buses in total, we got to the school which was the same as usual. We bought Lunch from the Cafe across the street, but everything else was quite ordinary. We had dinner without Mark, who had stayed in Colignan, and Maaike went back there after dinner. Maddie baked cookies for the three of us, which we ate and went to bed. A very nice and quiet day, which I enjoyed all the little aspects of.

. . .

Today was another school day. I read a book Emma had lent me called “every day”, and it is pretty good. I have already read half of it. Today I was pretty tired, so I pretty much layed on my bed until it was dinnertime. We had a very delicious stew, and me and Emma made chocolate pudding afterwards. I went to bed early.

. . .

Wednesday was yet another school day. I finished the book Emma lent me. For dinner we had pies, which Maaike and I had made. I don’t think I ever mentioned it again, but yes: the moons phases are different in the southern hemisphere! When I last saw the moon, it told me that it was about to be new, but later it was full! So by a little bit of observation, I conclude that the moons phases are opposite down under. Instead of going from D to O to C, it goes from C to O to D – which makes sense to me…

. . .

Today I did not go to school. I woke up a bit before 8 and had my breakfast. A bit later, I did yoga with Maaike and Maddie which was fun (especially when I fell over during a very daring headstand). I did hindbærsnitter once more, and we all had lunch. Afterwards, I made kammerjunkere, which we are going to have tomorrow along with homemade koldskål. Very proud of myself.

Kammerjunkere

Hindbærsnitter

We brought the hindbærsnitter to Venturers, where we had an international night. Everyone brought food from different countries (Denmark, Germany, France, Italy, England, Spain, China, Japan and Turkey) and we ate those in between games. We played a danish game (enlig mor fra Høje Taastrup), and some other games involving languages. It was a very good night, and we all laughed a lot.

International spread

. . .

Emma had no school on Friday, so we went with Maaike to Mildura. We went in a couple of “op shops”, looking for a dress for Emma. We didn’t find one, but we did try on some old-school wedding dresses and had a bit of a laugh. We had a cup of tea and a bagel on a little café, went in a book store, and finally we picked up Maddie from the Arts center. After some afternoon tea, we went to Colignan.

Sunset at Colignan

Rie and her host family came over for dinner, and we sat around the campfire. Ries host mother, Denise, had made something with bread and dip and stuff, and it was really delicious. For dinner we had a lot of different meat cooked on the barbecue, potatoes, couscous and salad. For dessert we had koldskål with kammerjunkere and afterwards we had self-saucing pudding. We went back out to the campfire, and looked at the stars. They pointed out the scorpio, the southern cross, a couple of galaxies that can’t be seen from the northern hemisphere, and some planets. I also saw a shooting star, and was very happy with the ending of that lovely day.

. . .

Before lunch, we went out to see Ries host family’s paddleboat, Impulse. It was build in ’83, but it sank four years ago so now it is being restored.

Afterwards, we went on a little Australian safari. We drove out past the vineyards and citrus trees, to a property belonging to some of the family’s friends. They have a huge area, where they have made the landscape as natural as possible, after having sheep on it for years. We saw a couple more kangaroos, and also a confused emu. Then we went to some sand dunes, a bit into the wild. Maaike showed us all some stones that the indigenous people had been using, so you could see the sharp edges on them. She also said, that if you walked barefoot in the sand dunes, you would be sure to return to Australia. So that is what we did.

Kangaroo

In the afternoon, me and Emma went sailing on the river in a kayak with pedals. We only went for about an hour, but it was a very nice and peaceful trip.

. . .

Sunday the 31st of July was National Tree Planting Day. So after going for a walk with the dog, we planted a tree in the garden. I planted a Gold Dust Wattle. The rest of the day was spent crocheting and making a fire for the camp oven that night.

. . .

International Scarf Day today, so we wore our scarfs to school. The teacher in Enviromental Science is some sort of wildlife saver, so she takes care of little joeys. Because I was there, she went home in the middle of class to get them. She came back with four little ones, and we got to cuddle them. So now I have seen kangaroos in the zoo, in the wild and in a box.

We got lunch at the café again, and it was pretty good. We also got a little raw cake-thing, not really sure what it was but it was very good. We had Dutch pancakes for dinner tonight, some with apple and some with bacon. It is my last night of my entire exchange, and I can’t believe that it is already coming to an end. I am insanely grateful for everything that I have seen and experienced on this trip, and for the people who has made it even more interesting by telling me the stories you wouldn’t normally hear as a tourist.

And now I realize how lucky I have been, to have experienced both the city and the countryside of this fascinating country.

I might do an update on how I am feeling about being home again, but let me know if there is something else I should rather write about. Thanks for reading all of my rambling posts!

Week 4: Mildura

I left Sydney Monday morning at around 12. It was a very small plane, with about 23 people in it. Only a few got of at Mildura, and some continued in the same plane. When I first got out, it was very quiet. My plane was the only one there, and I only had to walk a few meters to get my baggage (which only took a few minutes to get there). I was greeted by Emma (and now it gets confusing. This is another Emma, the one I will be staying with now. From now on she is the Emma I am mentioning) and her parents. We drove over to pick up their guinea pig, because they had just come home from holiday. I got to meet Rie, the other danish scout staying in Mildura. Afterwards we drove to their town house. They have two houses, one in the town and one on the countryside.

. . .

We got up at seven this morning, to catch the bus for school. Emma goes to a school called Mildura Senior College, so I went with her. In her school they don’t wear uniforms, and call the teachers by their first name. This is of course not different from Denmark, but it is quite unusual in Australia. School started at 9 (I think), and first lesson was psychology. It was easy to follow, and I found the topic (operant conditioning) quite interesting. The next lesson was English, where I read a book while the class talked about the book. They had read it beforehand, but obviously I hadn’t. In maths me and Emma were a bit lost, but I feel like it got better with time. I am hoping that I will understand it after a few lessons, because I have had about that particular topic before (logarithms). We ended the day with, a lunch break, and then chemistry. Chemistry was probably the best topic of the day, because 1) the teacher had brought brownies, and 2) we have had about bases and acids dozens of times so I actually knew what was going on.

When we got home, we had “afternoon tea” consisting of fruit, juice and chips. Emma’s little sister, Maddie, came home from camp so I got to meet her.

. . .

Another school day today. A bit longer and not as exciting, but it was okay. I did some grocery shopping with Maaike after school. For dinner we had kangaroo meatballs.

. . .

I am really liking the chemistry classes. I got to read my book a lot today though, because there was a few lessons I couldn’t participate properly in. After school we went back home, and for dinner we had hamburgers. After dinner me and Emma went to the venturer scout meeting. We went on a dump hike, so we got dumped of in the other end of Mildura, and walked back to the scout hall.

. . .

Friday we packed up our bags and went to Colignan, were the family have another house. It is even further away from everything, but it is still a nice place. That night it was very windy and rainy, so we just went inside. After dinner, we all went into the living room, and watched music videos on YouTube.

The farm house

. . .

Saturday morning after breakfast, I walked down to the river with Emma and their dog. Then we started packing our stuff, to go on a camp tonight. Mark gave me a tour of the farm, and we drove around to see all the citrus trees and vineyards.

In the afternoon we packed up our stuff in the car, and went to Kings Billabong to meet the other scouts and go camping. There were only three other scouts and a leader, but it was a nice little crowd. We sat around and made a campfire, and eventually we had our dinner. I tried sleeping in a swag – a tiny “tent” as pictured below.

swag

. . .

The next morning, we got up early (not on purpose) and saw the last bit of the sunrise.

Sunrise

After breakfast, we packed up some of our stuff and went for a hike. We walked out to a place called psyche pumps and back. I don’t really know how far we walked, but I am guessing it was between 10 and 15 kilometers. While walking, we saw a group of about seven kangaroos! They were not far away, and I also saw them jumping (which sounds weird to mention, but it looks really cool). I didn’t manage to get a picture of them, but I thought the experience would be better if I didn’t waste the time looking through my bag for my camera.

River

Back at the farm we had afternoon tea and I had a shower. For dinner we had lamb and vegetables made on a campfire in the garden, which the family does every Sunday. This Sunday was no exception, even though the weather was miserable.

Week 3: Sydney & Kiama

On Monday I went with Emma to Newtown – another of Sydney’s many suburbs. This one is enjoyed by both locals and tourists, as it is home to several stores, café’s and restaurants. We got there by train, and walked down the road to the left. We did a bit of shopping, Emma showed me a couple of nice, authentic stores, and then we went to have lunch. We had our lunch at a place called ‘Italian bowl’, and I had ravioli with pesto. It was very good, and definitely needed after a cold and windy morning. Apparently Newtown has a few alternative restaurants – which we didn’t go to. Emma told me about one where you pay what you think the food is worth, and one where you have to catch your food in your bowl. I would recommend this place, and I would also recommend doing a bit of research to make sure you make the most of it. Because the place is filled with interesting things, some of the best places might hide.

We went back to Central, to get some postcards. Afterwards, we walked through China Town, and got to the Chinese Gardens. It did cost $3 to enter the gardens, but it was a pretty and peaceful place. It would probably be more beautiful in the summer, or if you had a purpose there (such as meditation or drawing).

Chinese Garden

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The next day, I went out with Helen and Emma. We went to Symbio, a wildlife zoo with mostly native animals. I got to pet a kangaroo and feed an emu, so I think it was a pretty successful day! On the way home, we stopped at a café to get lunch, and watch the view (below).

A view

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On Wednesday me and Emma got on a ferry to Manly. It is an island near Sydney, and it took us about half an hour to get there. I was a bit surprised to see that Manly looked very different to the Sydney. It had more of an island-vibe to it, mainly because every other shop sold either swimwear or seafood. The houses reminded me a bit of what you would see along the coast in southern Europe. We had fish & chips at the beach, and afterwards we went for a little walk along the coast. Because of the very windy weather, we got pretty cold. That is when Max Brennner saved us with hot chocolate. If you have never heard of that place – because I hadn’t – it is basically a café that serves chocolate in every possible way. Very good, and very needed. We took the ferry home. After dinner we baked a honey cake (honningkage a’la Christiansfeld, opskrift her). It was really good, and they all liked it.

Manly

Manly

The ferry to Manly

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We got up early Thursday morning, to catch a train to Kiama. We saw a ‘blowhole’, and had a delicious picnic with sandwiches, dip and scones. Afterwards, we went to the beach. We didn’t really do much, but it was a very relaxing and nice day.I collected some shells at the beach, and me and Emma talked about the moon. I was wondering if the phases of the moon would be the same on the other side of the moon, but she didn’t know that. Though she did know, that when you look at the moon in Australia you will see a rabbit, which you can’t in Denmark. That could mean that it is only tilted a bit, but I will definitely keep an eye on it, to see if it does what I want it to do (it is half-moon now, and according to what I learned in physics it will soon be new-moon).

We took the train home, and had soup and lasagna for dinner.

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We walked to Aldi to get food this morning. I had lunch and did washing today as well, but that is not very exciting. I am starting to realize that my stay in Sydney is coming to an end, but I really don’t want it to. At the same time, I am kind of excited about going to Mildura, especially to meet even more new people. I also got my plane tickets today – finally!

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Today is Saturday, and we had a lazy morning. Around lunchtime, Helen, Emma and I went to a farm to pick mandarins. There were a lot of people, and a lot of mandarin trees. They tasted much better than the ones you buy in the store, and I don’t think it was because we picked them ourselves. Not only because of that. Emma and Helen said that they had never properly picked fruit from a tree, which surprised me a bit. I thought most people had done that, because I have done it so many times.

We went to have a late lunch, and had some surprisingly good croissants with avocado and chicken. And of course we had a pear pie to go with that. We went home filled with croissants and pie, and with two bags full of mandarins.

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Today I went out with Helen, James and Emma. We parked the car, and started a hike towards the Figure 8 Pools. The Figure 8 Pools are rock pools shaped as the number 8. To get there, you have to walk down a steep hill until you reach the beach, and from there you have to walk on big rocks along the coast. The last bit can only be done at low tide, because there can be unexpected high waves crashing into the wall on the other side – which leaves you with no way to get away. We didn’t walk the last bit, because we got soaked from a huge wave. All it did was make us wet, but we thought it would be better to turn around. Helen and James had gone another way, so me and Emma headed back to the car. We waited for them for about half an hour, not knowing where they were. But they came back, and we could all drive back home. It was an about 7 km long hike.

Forest

Beach near figure 8 pools

We went out for dinner. When we came home, we had a cake Helen had bought. They put in 19 candles, one for every day I had stayed with them. They were once again so nice, and had also gotten me a gift. I am very thankful. I am very sad to leave now, but I know that I couldn’t stay here forever, so I try to just be glad that I had the time I had. And of course I am also very excited for another adventure, and feel more ready than ever.

Cake