I have been trying to write a summary of my time in Sydney but I have been struggling to sum everything up in a few words. Years of hopes and dreams of getting to Australia all cumulating into one , one plane journey, one life changing moment.
After saying goodbye to my life as I knew it, I got on the plane and settled down for the 22 hour journey until I landed in Sydney. The flight was at 9.45pm so I got there early, spent the last of my British money on dinner and browsed the shops before being called to the gate. I was so excited, not being able to comprehend that I was at the airport and actually going to Australia. What was I doing?! I found that I really enjoy taking off and landing, and looking out the window at the Earth. Before I knew it we were landing in Singapore and I had a chance to stretch my legs for an hour in the airport. Back on the plane a 7 hours later, the most beautiful sunrise spread over the outback, allowing me to see my home for the next two years. After landing I was really surprised at the speed I was out of the airport, maybe only 30 minutes since landing and I was on the train to the city. I still had no idea where I was going, hoping I was going the right way. Standing in Sydney and looking around was amazing and something I will never forget, being overcome with astonishment that I had made it. It was 7am so I had a long time until I was able to check into my room, so I wandered the city with bright eyes, taking in all the details about this new continent I was in. It felt so normal to be there, from getting on the plane to living in a hostel for the first time, it just felt like I had found what I had always been missing, adventure, the unknown, life.
I spent the next few days exploring and getting to know the city, visiting the museum, cathedrals, zoos, the Opera House, Darling Harbour, aquariums, the Blue Mountains, Bondi. There are so many things to see in Sydney, it kept me occupied for many days. I changed hostels a few times over the weeks and met many great people. I also met up with a family friend who I stayed with for a couple of days in Avalon in the Northen Beaches, relaxing on the beach and having home cooked food. Days sped past and Christmas was soon here, Coogee beach welcoming us with sun, laughter and festive cheer. A week passed and it was time for NYE. Watching the fireworks was a surreal experience, realising where I was and how much courage it had taken to get to where I was. My dream that I had grew up with and had seemed impossible, had finally become a reality. And suddenly all the shitty jobs and sacrifices I had made were all worth it for that moment. Achieving a dream is something not everyone gets to do and for that I am eternally grateful.
I didn’t have a plan when I arrived in Sydney, some people would say it was a good thing to have no set plans, but I felt like I wasted a lot of time, and if I could go back I would have done some things differently. I had 5 weeks in Sydney before New Years and I spent the whole time in the city. I should have taken a week and gone to Jervis Bay and explored the surrounding areas more, before returning for NYE. But considering I was on the other side of the world, truely alone for the first time in my life, I think I did pretty well. I loved Sydney, it will forever be a place I hold dear, the place where I begun my travelling life and a place with many happy memories of freedom and wonder and hope.