Australia – day one

As a start I’d like to mention how I appreciate the fact that I can actually read things here.  The China Southern Airlines took me to Beijing (unexpectedly) and to Guangzhou (used to be Canton) and the whole trip over here was covered in Chinese. Frankly, I’m terrible at Chinese. I like the food and manage to cook a bit of it, but there’s still a little piece of it that keeps evading me. I should have taken up the chance to learn Chinese when I was offered it, but that was 25 years ago.

It’s hard to imagine that I’m actually on a vacation. I keep feeling it is not since I still have the funeral to go to, but sometimes it seeps through that I actually have days off and am not expected somewhere.

Australia is where I left it 11 years ago. Then we just had the olympics here and I actually took time to go by the stadium when I was in Sydney. Granted, I only saw it from far away. The ferry took us there when we accidentally took the wrong one. But seeing the stadium made us feel as if we didn’t waste a day on the wrong boat.

Yesterday seems only slightly like a waste of time as I kinda overnapped. I arrived late at my hotel, it was hard to find my way there in a car without a navigation system and when I finally got my phone to give me directions though the internet, I found out that internet is expensive here. It ran out almost as soon as I bought a package, 10 megabyte swoosh out to the phone company. So only half my map was downloaded and it was just enough to follow the blue dot (me) on the map, along a grey line that was my route. 
That and my efforts to drive on the “wrong” side of the road made it a bit longer to get anywhere.

The hotel is nice. The room I got is similar to the setup I had in India. It’s just a bit smaller. And the bed is wonderful. At least after a 30+ hour trip. The nap therefore went very well, too well. I finished unpacking, then sent some messages to friends and family. I went down for a lunch and went straight up to nap. It was about 2 PM and when I woke up I had slept through my alarm clock and into the evening. It was 9:30 PM when I woke up. 

I took some time to update several social networks, and I prepared my maps. I got complimentary internet, but it says it is only for one day. So I was making the most of it. I had a Coaching Circle call in the morning, so I went back to sleep and again slept very well.

I planned to go shower early and get breakfast before the call, but I slept so well that I couldn’t get myself to get out of bed. Around 8 I decided it wasn’t worth it. I just stayed in bed and when my phone alerted me to the coming meeting I just hooked up my headset and called in.

It was a good call, I do love the Circle calls more and more, even though I miss some of those that we lost on the way.

Of course breakfast was unavailable, After 10 they don’t serve anything anymore but coffee and some bread, so I went on my search for a power cable. Australia’s power plugs are pretty different from European and I brought something that only needs a good power plug. If I have that I can put four devices on it and I only brought a few. 

There was a KFC across the street from the hotel. As my search for a power chord is not going well I decided to eat first before going on the rest of my search.

And that’s where I am now. In the KFC, typing my blogpost out on my notes application and thinking about my first impressions. News from my team is that they didn’t get a lot “Done” for the demo, but the demo went well (it better, if you only have a few things to show 🙂 )

First impressions?

People are still very friendly, they’re not used to people like me, I can see them looking, but that’s fine. The amazing weather here, the tropical plants. It is very westernly yet so different. 
I saw some things that showed me how Australians are. Like the guys putting up a party tent outside in the hotel garden. They were going about it clumsily, so they were either unskilled or just didn’t care about thinking things through. It is not an Australian thing to not think things through, but doing things the easy way is. I also noticed that when I was sorting out my maps for this week. The photo that Google Maps streetview added to my list was full of rain spatters. Something I didn’t expect from Google at all. I understand it a little. But it shows the attitude.

I think I’ll have fun, it’s a must on this vacation.

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