Pack your bags
I don’t know about you but I hate being scared. I like to take that feeling of insecurity and deal with it. I try to turn it into a learning experience: you’re scared of heights? Go bungee jumping. You’re scared of the ocean? Take a swimming lesson. This is your life and you can do anything you want with it. Take it, change it, make it what you want it to be.
Here’s a little throwback to when I decided to move to Australia for 6 months. I packed my life into a storage unit and bought a one way ticket to Sydney.
It’s the first week of this adventure and I started driving, on the other side of the road. I tried automatic first, it went well. I taught myself to slowly feel comfortable on the other side of the car as a passenger to start with. A week later, I now drive standard and shift gears with my left hand, sit on the right side of the car and drive on the left side of the road. Believe me, I’m still trying to make sense of all of this. Basically, putting on my left turn signal usually ends up with activating the wipers, and the blinkers at the same time. But I’m learning and I have seen worst! One time, back in Canada, someone I know drove my standard car, with the handbrake on for a distance of 20kms at 90kms/hr. I was freaking out! Let’s just say I was not too happy, not too great for my poor little car!
Two weeks later, I finally moved into a two bedroom apartment in Jindabyne. It feels good to be able to unpack, and to know that you won’t need to pack again for a few months. Jindabyne is a town about 30 minute drive from Perisher Valley, one of the only ski hills of Australia. It has a pretty interesting story; I had to do a little research for this one. It goes like this, once upon a time, there was a river named the “Snowy River” and the humans decided to build a dam. “The dam’s main purpose is for the generation of hydro-power and is one of the sixteen major dams that comprise the Snowy Mountains Scheme, a vast hydroelectricity and irrigation complex constructed in south-east Australia between 1949 and 1974 and now run by Snowy Hydro.” In other words, they flooded the Snowy River, and created a lake. Lake Jindabyne is one the largest body of freshwater in the New South Wales region. The fun fact here, is that there was a village instead of the lake before. You can now go diving in Lake Jindabyne and visit the old town! Pretty cool, but I won’t be diving in any cold water during the winter!
The mountains at Perisher are nothing compared to the beautiful mountains of British Columbia. I really miss the purity of the lakes and the infinite hikes available to all in the summer. I miss the sun as well. When they give you the weather forecast over here in Australia, they talk about the UV index and they actually tell you how much time it will take you to burn. Usually 60 minutes is all you need to get burnt over here. Some people say that there is a hole in the ozone over Australia, but let’s not get too scientific about it.
Mount Perisher’s snow is all artificially made. Out of the three weeks I have been here so far, it has snowed only once. They have 180 snow guns working all night starting at 5pm. It is cold enough at night for the snow to “stick” around, so that’s a good thing. The other day I went snowboarding for the second time here, it was 16 degrees celsius at around noon. Quite the experience to snowboard in Australia, and the kangaroos do hang out in the snow, in case you’re wondering.