After arriving 14 hours later than planned, I finally made it to Adelaide. The first issue, which was a shock, was my first ever experience of jetlag. The next few days meant I was still acclimatizing to the different time zone. My first impression, and from the opinion of my transfer, was that Adelaide, as a city, is quite small; the city centre is only 1 mile square. The city is surrounded by parks.
The view from my window enables me to see most of the city and the city can be seen as quite small because there are not many tall buildings. However, the size of the city is not a bad thing as it makes it easy to travel quickly across the city, or be able to travel to the coast quickly and easily.
The first few days were spent settling in and purchasing food to live on. I visited Rundle mall which is the main shopping street of Adelaide, with numerous high street stores. The two main supermarkets are Woolworths (which is strange after what happened to the UK version of the store) and Coles. Shopping is slightly more expensive here than in the UK. I was also able to visit the famous central market. It was an experience which reminded me of back home at Walthamstow or Romford market and is different to the norm in the UK, which is to go to your local supermarket. Being able to buy fresh produce from the market was cheaper and I saw a wide range of different fruit, vegetables, meats and other produce.
I owe a lot to my flatmates who really did help me settle in and made it easy when moving to Australia, especially as I had missed the orientation week and introductory information due to the travel difficulties. I am living in urbanest which is in the North part of the city. There are students from all over the UK such as Leeds, Bristol and Nottingham, but also students from all over the globe like Germany, Canada and Hong Kong. I have also joined the halls football team which really helps in getting to know people who are also on exchange here. Everyone gets along really well here and for any potential student who wish to come to Adelaide I highly recommend staying here!
The night life in Adelaide is slightly different to university life in Southampton. There are no clubs like Jesters or Switch, which target students. The nightlife is made up of a number of different bars and pubs which are called hotels in Adelaide. The first Thursday of my arrival there was an Exchange student network night out at the Dog and Duck hotel. The place was packed with students from all over the globe and showed how many different people had come to study in Adelaide. One warning for those who ever want to visit Adelaide is that the pints here are different in size to the ones back in England!
The weather in Australia was slightly colder than what I expected, especially after leaving London during a 30 degree heat wave. As it is currently winter here in Adelaide the weather is quite windy and wet, which isn’t like the Australia you see on TV. However, there have been a few sunny days. I’ve been warned that by the time its summer, it becomes unbearably hot, so I can’t complain too much!
After the first few days of settling in, I began my first week of studying at University. What shocked me at first, and what I was slightly unprepared for, was the number of weekly and bi-weekly assessments. This has means I have much more work than I would do in Southampton, to ensure I stay on top of everything. However, with the benefit of recorded lectures it has made working easier.
On the final day of July, we went to watch an Aussie match. The game was at the Adelaide oval, between Adelaide Crows and Essendon, which is an area in north Melbourne. The oval is one of the biggest grounds in Australia and has hosted major cricket, rugby and football events here. Having never watched Aussie football before I was unsure of the rules however I learnt that the middle posts count for 6 points and the side posts count for 1 point. The Crows beat Essendon heavily 143-61. While it was complicated at first it was enjoyable to watch and an experience. One thing Australian football is struggling with compared to football, or soccer as it is known here, is the atmosphere from the crowd is loud which was unexpected.