Making it in Melbourne: The Parallel Universe

Kaitlyn poses by a tree with another international student

Imagine an eerie but a super cool parallel universe like something out of a Christopher Nolan film. That’s what Australia is like compared to the U.S. Everything is exactly the opposite. The lights switch the opposite way, cars drive on the opposite side of the road, and the driver’s side is on the right (wrong) side of the car. The seasons are opposite, they use Celsius and the metric system, the phone rings differently, and McDonald’s burgers are even being served upside down at some places. (True story!)

And that’s just the beginning. All the birds here are obviously direct descendants of Pterodactyls and sound like they want to murder you in cold blood. Normally, one would awaken to the sweet song of birds in the morning (like in “Cinderella”). But here, you’re abruptly startled awake by an unearthly screech that immediately instills fear in your very soul.

BUT, the friendliness of the people here more than makes up for all the things that want to kill you. Pretty much every person you meet makes you feel like you’re their dear cousin Darla who they haven’t seen in six years.

I made friends immediately upon getting here, mostly with other international students since we all went to a beach welcome program at Lorne on Great Ocean Road. We learned how to surf, went mountain biking, and took a yoga class on the beach.

Since then, we’ve explored the city together a few times, including going to the Queen Victoria Night Market, the Moomba Festival, and a donut festival. We also go to beaches more than anyone should – Brighton Beach and St. Kilda, to name a couple.

Classes started last week and are going smoothly so far. Life in Melbourne is better than anything I could have dreamed up! I’m more than making it here. It’s safe to say I’m right at home.

Study abroad is just one of the many opportunities for students here at Grand Canyon University. Learn more by visiting our website or contacting us using the Request More Information button at the top of the page.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.