I’ll be home for Christmas…

If only in my dreams.

Funny how so many of the Christmas songs seem appropriate now. The funny thing is, I definitely do not feel in the Christmas spirit. Believe me, I’m trying. I have my students doing the odd Christmas activity… we’ve been reading french holiday books. I had my top group learning about sugar bushes and learning Christmas/winter vocabulary. We even did an adorable french snow globe activity which I’m not sure if I’ll send home, or pilfer and bring home with me for ‘safekeeping’. A few of my students have started giving me Christmas cards and candy canes, but it just seems… wrong. When I grocery shop, my ears are assaulted by awkward Christmas jingles and it bothers me. I’m even listening to Christmas music while I write this! – but it feels forced. Amazing how much the lack of snow can alter your perception of the holidays. The days are getting longer, the weather is getting warmer (sort of) and I am reminded of the fact that I have a) no friends from home b) no family c) no trees d) no presents to put under said tree (not that its essential) and no one to buy gifts for either…If you know me well, you know I become giddy around November 15th and start mega-downloading tunes. Right now, I don’t even know where my iPod is (oops) and I don’t have any holiday tunes downloaded… No, not even Frank Sinatra (I’ll give you a moment to expel your shock).

So, Christmas is a write-off for me. I will be going to a pub/bar with a group here called ‘Newbies in Melbourne’. They are 1500 strong and are comprised of internationals and new locals who will also be alone for Christmas. There will be a secret santa that night, and I believe Christmas day will be a beach day. I’m waiting to get paid tomorrow to plan the next step in my life here, which is “New Years and Tasmania”. A new friend here scored his aunt’s empty apartment in Sydney over new years and voila, he’s letting me stay too. I want to do an overnight Blue Mountains tour after Christmas, meet up with this friend to see Bondi and Manly beaches again, then fly to Tasmania on January 3rd. The 4th will be me moving to the Huon Valley where my adventure of fruit picking begins. I hope they find me a job quickly, and I hope it isn’t too painstaking. I also hope it pays so I don’t go in debt doing this silly regional work. Apples, anyone?

Apples, anyone?
Apples, anyone?

As many of you will know, the farm work is essential to obtaining your second year visa. I’m up in the air about it, but want to get it done in case I do want to come back. The only other option is getting sponsored, which my school won’t do. In all honesty, I had hopes it might happen, and I feel I’ve done a decent job, as others have told me, but alas. I still believe that everything happens for a reason, so fingers crossed there will be new adventures in wait in Hobart.

I recently did go to Hobart with my Canadian-teacher-friend Jon for a few days. It was nice to check it out, and Hobart seemed to love eating up our money. On the first day, we did a tour of Port Arthur which is a UNESCO world Heritage site. It was a secondary prison which means the REAL baddies went here. Apparently it’s really haunted, and I kept asking ghosties to come out and chat. Everyone seemed to be too busy.We checked out Salamanca market, the local nightlife, etc. It’s a nice harbour town. MONA was a very freakish museum which left us feeling as though we don’t really understand art. Anyway….
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I also went on a camp with my students in November and only thus downloaded my pictures. I’m just putting a few up so you can see the students I taught. It was tiring, but a good time. I’m really going to miss some of them!
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I suppose that’s an adequate post for now. Time to write 50 cards for my kiddies tomorrow! So glad reports and portfolios are D-O-N-E!Miss and love you all,
From Melbourne (with love)
P.S – I will have a new mailing address again with farm work, so let me know if you want it!

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