ahh yes. so among many things that have happened since i last posted, the most important is obviously the fact that i recently turned 20! woohoo! although i believe that even prior to the day, i was already having a quarter life crisis, and though i dont feel any different...its true. im 20. but more about that later.
sunday we went to the blue mountains which was great. it was absolutely gorgeous up there and although the blue mountains aren't "blue" per say, the mist that comes down over them is blue and it was captivating. it was nice to get out of the hustle and bustle of sydney (although i do want to go back before i leave), and just enjoy the beauty of australia for a day. the fam enjoyed it too which was nice. it was definitely worthy of the top 10 list of things i wanted to see in australia, and i think that if you come here...you should definitely go check them out too. in comparison, for those of you who have been to the grand canyon...it had the same sort of feel except it had trees?...if that makes any sense to you instead of just rock. it also wasn't quite on the same aspect of the grand canyon but i think thats the most similar thing to it (that i have seen) in the states. i got to see the three sisters, these cool rock formations off one of the mountains which was pretty awesome and also a pretty sweet waterfall. i think the craziest part about the mountains themselves is that they are very vast but not connected by sight? i'm not sure how much sense that just made...but in order for you to get to other parts of the mountains you have to drive every which way to see all the parts of it.
for lunch, we stopped in this really cool town called Leurna which on that day had a huge garden festival going on. it was very very very small mountain town (all of them were), but for the garden festival what happens is that all the members of the community have these unbelievably beautiful gardens and on that day...everyone opens up their back yards or whatever and you can just go in and out and see everyones gardens. pretty sweet/crazy ya think? we didn't go into anyone's gardens because i think thats pretty weird but there was also a huge market/festival going on in the main street of the town which we paroused for a while. there were various arts and crafts vendors, food and all that. this just added to my list of another cool market that i've been to in australia. i believe that they are very popular around here because i am pretty sure that you can find one anywhere in australia on any weekend. its a pretty cool culture though. oh, and one of the best parts of the market/festival was this turkish food vendor. they were selling these things called gölezme which was delicious. it is almost like a very very very thin pita like bread that they put spinach, cheese and minced beef in and almost cook it like a quesadilla. DELICIOUS. if you are ever in turkey, or ever go to a turkish restaurant or whatever...get that.
after lunch, we headed off to the wildlife park. now, i have had my share of wildlife parks and the fam went to the zoo the other day so i wasn't sure about this part of the tour but it ended up being awesome. they got to get up, close and personal with the kangaroos and koalas which i believe they enjoyed and the highlight for me was the LITTLE PENGUINS!!! now, although i told you a while ago when i went to phillip island that was the primary reason. however, if you also remember i told you that we were not allowed to take pictures of them...but at the park we were so now i have pictures of the little penguins and they were adorable. sweet life.
on the way back, before we took the river cruise, we stopped at the olympic park which was awesome. i wish we had more time (i only had10 minutes) because i couldn't see everything...which was dissapointing but to just to be there was great. loved it (and i want to go back for longer)! oh, and i also decided that i MUST get to china next summer for the olympics. somehow, someway...i gotta get there.
monday morning we headed to melbourne and i was just so excited to have them finally come to my city. it was an early flight but i made it back in time for my classes which was good. i took them to lygon street for a little bit on monday but they were pretty exhausted and just relaxed for the day. monday night also began my & kristen's birthday festivities. the remaining four, took us on a surprise dinner trip to the Pancake Parlour and it was delicious! we all had pancake desserts for dinner and it was a swell way to begin the bday celebration. i had pancakes topped with hot apples with cinnamon and cream and it was AMAZING. we all decided that we would definitely go back there again sometime.
tuesday= BIRTHDAY!!!Wooohooo! the family wen't on a day trip to the great ocean road and they loved it which was great. i only had two classes so i went to them, had lunch with alycia and siobhan at st. marys, and then went into the city and had some karri birthday time. it was perfect. i bought myself a crepe which was delicious before heading back to the village to do some work. last night, we went out to dinner with the fam to this very good italian restaurant on lygon street. i had tiger prawns (shrimp) with risotto and it was delicious. but we definitely saved the best for last with dessert. i had STICKY DATE PUDDING (cake)...obviously and it was delicious. i made mom, yvette and bishop taste it as well and they enjoyed it equally. the biggest surprise of the evening was when siobhan and i returned to our room after dinner. i opened the door and was welcomed with a "surprise" from the remaining four with insane decorations and stuff everywhere. i had no idea! they got me! it was perfect though. i don't think that i could have asked for a better way to end my bday and for a better group of friends to end it with. ahh, i love the 6 so much and am already getting sad to think about how i am going to deal with not having them a mile away at any point during the day. they bought me a freddo ice cream cake which although i was stuffed from dinner, we still ate it and it was still delicious. but yes, so i had a wonderful bday and the bday celebrations aren't stopping because today its kristen's bday (surprises are in the works), tomorrow is george's and friday is nikkis. i guess you know what i'll be doing all weekend...muahaha.
well, i think that is it for now. i have some more important observations to share with you but i must be off to class now. until then, Cheers!!