Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Sydney Day 21

Ok, it's been a few days since I"ve updated my blog so here goes. NOt much too exciting has happened in the last 10 days. I got sick and had a cold but I ended up buying these pills with zinc, echinechea and vitamin C and they seemed to have work. My cold only last 3 or 4 days and it wasn't so bad. I still went to work. I worked 4 days last week and I work another 4 days this week, starting with tonight. I ended up doing a lot of walking the last few days and I don't know how it stared but I got a really bad pain in my foot when I walk. I was worried I wouldn't be able to work but it's getting better and on top of that I informed my boss yesturday that I can't walk a lot and he said it was fine to still coem in and work. I can do a lot of stuff int eh back without needing to walk a lot.

Speaking of work, last saturday was a guy form work's birthday. We all went up after work to the bar above the restaurant. Since I learnt evryone I work with's name and most of the people in the bar were people i work with, it felt just like back home. AFter a week I Was in a bar and i knew almost evryone there! It's great to fel welcomed. THe peopl I work with are awesome! I actually can't wait to work tonight since with the crappy weather and my foot, I"ve been inside mostly all week.

ONe of the Korean guys I live with left and was replaced with a new one. THis new guys name is Tony. He sems really kool and I can't see any of us having a problem with him. BEsides he sems to leave early and come home late so I hardly seem him anyways. THe apartment is really clean now. We moved our food from one cupboard to another to avoid the cockroches and I even sealed up some cracks I found with tape. It seems to have worked. Apperntly our toster cuaght on fire and the landlord got us a brand spanking new one! It's great since the old one was rusted and dirty and this one is nice and clean.

THe only other thing I've ben doing is getting ready for halloween. IT's not celebrated here as much as it is in Canada and USA but I"m going ot be going on a all you can eat and drink boat cruise and it's promoting dress up. Those of you who know me well, know that I go crazy for halloween being I was the incredible hulk 2 years ago and a ghostbuster last year (winning best costume at a party!). This year I decided I"m going to go as a transformer! It's looking awesome. I made a head and a body straight out of cardboard and tape. I almost gave up but my roomate Otto came and gave me advice and saved me from using a really big and bulk box as a body for one that was much smaller and easier to move around in. HE's a great guy and we joked around all last night. If my costuem doesn't work out, I"m going to go as a "naked guy with a Corona box", but so far it's looking that i"ll be OPtimus Prime.

I Also started to see some of the things I Want to see while in the city'. I went to Hyde PArk to take more pictures and evn saw this GReat Synogogue. It was huge but invetwen 2 buildings so it semd out of place. I couldn't go inside but I got a nice picture of the outside.

I finally got my pics on a PC! But i forgot the password to my friend's FTP site (Dustin, please e-mail me that info!). Pictures in the next week I promise!

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Sydney Day 11

The weather has gotten a bit better today but it's really humid now. The next few days there is a chance of thunder showers. Boo! On top of that I caught a cold. I'm feeling sluggish but I still want to go to work because I JUST started working there. I bought these 'all natural' pills that have echinechia, zinc and vitamin C and they seem to be helping.

So I am officially working at Jordan's, a seafood restaurant. All I do is bring food to tables. It's quite easy and a relaxed environment. It's a pretty high class restaurant though. I have a uniform and I need to shave before EVERY shift. I came in having not shaved for 2 days and the general manager (a real prick, I'm told), gave me a disposable razor and sent me to the back to shave. Since I did it dry, I ended up cutting myself all over the place, but for some reason, a little stuble looks a lot worse then a lot of blood. The people i work with are really fun and they go out for drinks sometimes after the shifts. We get a deal at te bar above, owned by the smae people and sometimes the nice manager, George, an American, gives us free drinks from the bar of the restaurant itself.

I decided against working at the sports bar because no one informed me it was a TRANCE CLUB at night! I worked 5 hours, didn't get paid and hated every minute of it. They told me that thre forst 3 hours was training and any extra time i work i get paid for. I worked from 11pm to 3am and when I asked for a break the manager sent me home saing i did well and will be on the hoster next week. i tols here no thanks and she never mentioned anything about how i would get my 2 hours work of pay. For the amount it wasn't worth it so I just left. Later on, I found out it was illegal to not pay me at all. According to the law, you work, you get paid. There is no "trainin" period. Oh well, I didn't like the place anyways.

I moved into the fully loaded apartment I mentioned. I know live 5 minutes away from my work so it's great. I like where I live. The people I live with are friendly and we really started to clean it up because som eof it has been let go and got quite dirty. I've also been cooking a lot and love it. No more KD. I've made pasta, tuna, chcken stir fry, hamburgers, and more.

Last night I went to see Shawn of The Dead. I loved it. It's funy and really graphic at the same time. It's not completely a comedy but seeing how the main characters discover that there are zombies walking the streets is Hilarious!

I've been inside in front of this computer for 2 hours now and if I spill over even a minute I'll have to pay for another full hour so keep posted and
I'm sure Ill have more to write about once I'm felling better and going out more.

Also, pictures soon I PROMISE!

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Sydney Day 10

Weather wise the past few days have been crappy. It's been cold and rainy comparable to November weather in Montreal. I wanted to write a bit of an update but I'm getting kicked off for someone else tosuet eh PC. I'll update later.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Sydney Day 7 (Week 1)

Wow! It's already been 1 week! Time seems to be going slow since I've done so much already. Ysturday was a very productive day. I went job hunting again in the morning. I walked around an area called Darling Harbour (Think Old Port of Montreal) and handed CVs to every place I thought i could work at. A seafood restaurant called Jordan's was interested in me and will let me do a training shift tonight as a "foodie". Basically I bring food to tables. I'm officially a waiter's assisant's assistant. The restaurant is huge and has lots of positions so it seems like a good place for promotion if I work hard enough, that's what the manager told me. Plus the bartender is Canadian from Vancouver and he seemed like a nice guy. Aside from that, on th eotherside of the Harbour, a bar called One World sport, will try me out as a "glassie" (Australian's tend to like to add 'ie' to the end of every word). Basically I just have to pick up dirty beer glasses and check out the bathroom. I was told though, that they may train me on the bar on slow nights if all goes well so that's exciting. I'd be happy if I could work at both and gain experience in both regimes.

I also went to check out 2 apartments yesturday and 1 today. One of them has great potential. It's in a nice ares, VERY close to the Harbour (great if I get those jobs). The specks include a pool, sauna, gym, bbq on the roof, balcony, my own room to share with Stephanie, a full kitchen and a washer and dryer. All for a very inexpensive price for here. There is also a post office and supermarket nearby. I said I'd think about it but unless i find something better, which so far I havn't, I'll probably take it. Staphine really liked it too so I'll have to figure it out with her soon.

Last night I entered in a "stand up comedy contest". It was at a pub that never done it before. I was the only official guy interested in it. Everyone else just jumped on last second and had nothing funny to say. I on the other hand wrote stuff the night before and also had nothing funy to day. In fact I was horrible, but for being the worst one, I won a free t-shirt and 2 beers! Who say's it sucks to be a loser? I was also told i can give it another shot if i really want, so maybe i'll actually take some time and practice a bit and write some funny jokes before attempting it again.

The weather is starting to really warm up. yesturday was a record breaker of 38 degrees celcius. Highest for Sydney EVER.

Well I better get going, only a few hours till I have to got to work.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Sydney Day 6

Sunday I went to Manly beach with a few people. It was really nice and sunny that day. Wee had to take the ferry there. It was this HUGE boat! The beeach itself was beautiful. There are a lot of shops nearby. there was even a breakdancing show done by a couple of guys from the Bronx, New York. For lunch I had Shish Taouk in a pita (chicken pita), except here it's called Chicken Kebab and most places that sell it sell pizza as well. After the beach I headed to the hostel, extended my stay until thursday and then made dinner. I had pasta with tuna and a special cheese and garlic crean sauce. Mmm Mmmm! After dinner I did laundry for the first time! I didn't shrink anything btu wasted a few bucks. It casts 3$ for a wash and 3$ for a dry 9I know- expensive). So I washed my stuff, put them in the dryer, put in my money and leave. One hour later, I come back open it up and my clothes are sill wet! So I put in more money adn then realized there was a START button! In any case, I didn't shrink anything. I also had to changes rooms. At first I thought that I was getting kicked out because of a group that was coming in and they ran out of room in the hostel. However, in reality, I hadn't have read the notice properly and I was just asked to move rooms. My new room is SO much smaller but the people i share with are nice.

I also ended up buying a cell phone since I needed a number that people could contact me at. The plans here are great! It's only 70$ for the phone but a 30$ credit included. It's completely pay as you go here and it doesn't cost me a penny if you call me - only outgoing calls. And, if I call someone else who owns a phone by the same company, its also free!

Yesturday I started job hunting. At first I didn't havethe right clothes so I went out and bought a new belt, white buttoned shirt and a nice blue tie that matched my bag! I made 40 copies of my CV, made a few calls and then hit the streets. I got rid of about 10 CVs and had 2 interviews. An italian restaurant in the Rocks (think old Montreal) was considering hiring me for 5 nights a week. The pay didn't sound so good but he claims his place makes 1400$ in tips a night. I don't know how many ways thats split by, though, but if it's just amoung 3 or 4 guys, thats pretty good. If everyone gets a cut, including the janitor... thats's bad.

Today I extended my stay again in the hostel until monday morning. I had to go to a special certified course in order to obtian a piece of paper necessary for m to work in a restaurant. They are VERY strict here with alchol laws and sinc emany restaurants sell alcohol here, I"m required ot take the course. It'snot cheap though! It cost me 70$ I've spent so much money just to set my self up in order to MAKE money. It's like i"m going backwards! I also started apartment hunting and Stephanie, the canadian from the plane, has agreed to share a place with me since it's impossible to find a single roomed apartment for an afordable price. She's very nice and everything shoudl be fine, unless she snores!

I have an interview tomorrow and a meeting for an apartment on thrsday so I'm still pretty busy this week. Also I plan on job hunting again tomorrow afternoon. this is SO exciting!

Anyways I'm hungry so I'm off to make rice and chicken soup for super. I've become a real iron chef! (shakes head from right to left...)

Saturday, October 09, 2004

Sydney Day 3

Last night I signed up at the hostel for this bus right to a bar for a disco party. It was free and I got 1 free drink and two 2 for 1 vouchers so that was enjoyable. I also met a bunch of cool people. I met 2 irish and 2 scottish guys and we just joked around last night and had fun together. I also saw a girl wearing a bright white t-shirt with red letters that said Canada, so I went up to her and asked "SO what part of Canada are you from?". To which she replied "Germany". She actually came to visit Montreal some tiem earlier and bought th eshirt as a souvernir. I still talked to her nonetheless because she was quite nice. Today I walked around with this Canadian, Stephanie, to Darling Harbour. it's basically a dock with a lot to do including a few museums and an aquarium. I have a free voucher to the aquarium and hope to use it sometime in the future. I went into a musem for free and on display they had a boat made out of beer cans! It was really kool. For some reason it made me thing of Sam. Afterwards, Stephanie, the 2 scotts from the night before and I went to Bondi beach. Very beautiful but unfortunatley windy and cold. Tomorrow, I'm heading down to another beach, Manly, with an Irish guy and some others who I met at the hostel and th eparty last night. I extended my stay at the hostel until next thurday. They squeezed me in since they are expecting a big group of americans soon. I have to check out of 1 room and then check back in into another. Today I had a "look at me I'm totally a tourist" moment. I was trying to find a restaurant and was looking in my guide book in the street wearing my Canada hat. Then these guys stopped and asked me if I needed help. I really didn't but then we started talking about the Darkness since I was wearing my Darkness t-shirt. For some reason it made me think of Sam, hehe.
I took this weekend off to have some fun but my cash flow is slowly disintegrating so come monday I'm going ot have to put an effort into finding a job.
Well, I got invited to go out to a pub tonight and thought I'd check it out for a little while, so I better get going.

Friday, October 08, 2004

Budman in Sydney

It's only been 2 days and so much has happened. I arrived in Sydney
yesturday morning at 6:30am. Te plane ride was long but I survived it.
I met someone on the plane who is also here with SWAP and is on the
smae floor as me at the youth hostel. We decided to ban together and
walk around for a few hours. I walked through the Royal Botanical
Gardens and saw real live bats in the trees. I also got to see the
Sydeny Opera house from afar and will hopefully go back another day
and get a closer look. After seeing the Sydney harbour bridge, I ended
heading to the IEP resource center. It's very nice here. All the staff
is very helpful and there is free internet which is how I am able to
this e-mail. At ngiht I actually went out to an organized 'pub meet'
at a bar called Australian Hotel and met a few people. I ended up
calling it a night at 10pm where one of the people i have to share the
room with was a woman working in the army stationed in Afghanistan. I
knew better than to talk about that and just spoke mostly about
Australia with her. This morning I got up and ended up back at the
resource center where I had an orientation. So far I've got my CV
fixed up and I'm most likely going to try and find a job as a waiter.
I have no idea where I would prefer to work but I was given areas I
should walk around to look for a job so I'll check them out. I'm also
tempted to try looking for jobs by the beaches. Apperently it's really
fun living there and I have to look into it but maybe it'll be cheaper
since it's about 20 minutes from downtown.
I also have to look for a place to live but until I have a job or a
better idea of my surroundings, I'm going to wait. I heard that if I
extend my stay at the youth hostel I am in for 1 week and say that I'm
with IEP, I'll get a discount rate for 120$ for the week (oppose to
the normal 210$) so I'm highly considering that since it's in the
middle of all the areas that I want to look for a job.
Tonight I decided I'm going out on an organized trip with the youth
hostel (it's free!) and then take it easy on the weekend (they suggest
we do so) and come monday morning, search hard for a job. They say if
I spend a good 2 hours every morning for a short while I'm bound to
find something fast.
Well I better go, my time on the computer is running short.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Vancouver (Cont'd)

After a well needed 11 hours of sleep I had a pretty big day ahead of me in the city of Vancouver. I spent the morning walking around this huge park called Stanley Park. I walked along Coal Harbour and I got to see the Lion's Gate Bridge, the younger sibling to the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. By afternoon I met up with my cousin and we went for all you can eat sushi. Yum! Afterwards we went to sunset beach where we chilled and digested our lunch. It was pretty amazing being able to see the Pacific Ocean and say that in 2 days I'm going ot be seeing it from the OTHER side! Like Jim Morrison says, I'm going to "break on through to the other side"! After chiling, we rented "A Man on Fire" and ate pizza back at his place. I called it an early night since I was still tired from the time difference.
This morning I woke up and took a ferry over to Grandville Island. On the island I met up with a friend from McGill and ate lunch together and walked around this nice little area called Market Place. Afterwards, I ferried back 'home' and have just been resting, couting down the time for the big flight. In less then an hour I'll be on my way to the airport where I'll be flying for 6 and a half hours to Honolulu with an hour break and then the long haul of 10 hours to Sydney! I can't wait to get there, too bad there's this big thing in the middle called the Pacific Ocean that I have to cross in order to get there.
More updates to come and maybe even some pictures!

Sunday, October 03, 2004

Chapter 1: Vancouver

The flight into Vancouver was about 5 and a half hours. it wasn't so bad actually. I ended up sitting next to some guy who just spoke with me most of the way. I slept for about 20 minutes so I'm pretty out of it right now. When I got off the plane, I picked up my bag and headed for the exit. Outside, my Cousin Richard was waiting for me in his old school pickup truck to which we drove down to his appartment downtown listening to Public Enemy! His apartment is SWEET. You can see Cole Harbour and the bay. The view is beautiful. He's right by Stanley Park which I'm hoping to check out in the 2 days that I am here. We just got back from some shopping and are about to fire up the barbecue! Man I'm starving!

The Adventure Begins!

So I'm actually going to do this! No chickening out now. It's 7am and I'm all ready to leave for the airport. I wasn't too sleepy last night and had about 4 hours of half decent sleep. Everything is packed and ready to go. Next stop: My dad's car. Then the airport and THEN Vancouver (for those who don't know, that's in British Colombia...). It's a 5 and a half hour plane ride. I have a bunch of stuff to do on the plane (draw, play with gimp, read, etc.) but I'm hoping I just fall asleep.
Well, my mom is calling me so that means one thing: time to go.