anything upto 2008-05-11T06:00:00

2008-05-02

Looks like I am indeed travelling to Australia finally. Not that I didn't expect it, but I was kind of not quite excited about it yet, possibly due to the quite large workload still to be done. Turns out, packing for long range travel is not as problematic as assumed, it basically boils down to "take enough clothing" - and an electrical adapter for all your electical gadgets, like laptop and mobile phone.

I arrived at Frankfurt airport as expected, and the plane sure departs as planned. The flight was quite uneventful, but pleasant, as I recently got not that much sleep - but am now able to catch up on that. Later on lunch or whatever one should call it is offered and sometime later on breakfast like stuff as well.

After a short stop at Singapore - a really beautiful airport, with plants and relax lounges and whatnot - I depart using the same plane on the same seat, which makes the subsequent comment of security video a bit useless: "As you will be at a different seat each time you fly, the routes to the escape doors will most probably be different." Yeah, right. They could theoretically have known better. Anyway the video was unnecessarily played anyway, as the following flight is as uneventful as the first.

Shortly before the end of the flight, I was watching the ground to aquire some feeling of how large the non-city areas would be in Australia. And I was not disappointed, as the first thing I saw was exactly blackness. And much of it. During takeoff in Germany (during night), one could see light until the horizon basically. Now however, it was all black, so the travel guides I were given were totally right about how there is quite some non- city area in Australia.

2008-05-04

After arriving at the airport in Sydney, my first move was to convert the Euros I still held into Australian dollars, which in turn I could convert into a map of the city. Unfortunately there were no plans available which also covered the airport area. As the sun was just rising however, I knew where north was anyway and set out towards the city center. After walking for some time I reached the southern end of my map and then walked to the accommodation "BB's" I booked using the internet earlier.

The place is actually quite nice, but not quite the kind of place I could stay for a long time doing the kind of hard brain work my disploma thesis is supposed to be. Anyway, I returned to the city for a short while until I aquired something to eat. I went to bed quite early that day due to jet lag.

2008-05-05

I bought a "Travellers Pass" today which allows me to travel by bus as much as I want for a complete week. I also went to NICTA after Rob told me where that would be. Before I reached him by phone, I went to the campus of the Sydney University and even located the Computer Science Lab there, however the University of New South Wales, with which NICTA really is associated is somewhere else. I also visited their campus and K17, the computer science building as indicated on the campus plans. However NICTA turned out to be located in the building aptly named "223 Anzac Parade".

2008-05-06

Rob has shown me around today, and helped me opening a local bank account and finding more permanent accomodation. If everything turns aut right, I will live in the lower floor of a house owned by a nice family sharing it with another nice student. This night however, I will still stay at BB's.

2008-05-07

Yep, the room turned out all right, nonetheless I will sleep at BB's once more, otherwise I would need to bring my luggage to NICTA. Also, the guys around there (BB's) are quite nice actually. This obviously does not mean the NICTA people are any less friendly, we eat lunch together each day at a different restaurant around here and generally talk about computers and mathematical stuff and whatnot.

2008-05-09

We had friday beer at Rob's home this evening. It was quite nice - why is there no such thing in Germany?

2008-05-10

I went to BB's once more in the hope that the mates around there would do something interesting during weekend. They voted for the beach and I went with them. Note to self: Actually packing for abroad is not truly that trivial, consider whether there are other activities available which you did not think about. Well I need to get some swimwear, but that'll be no problem around here.

2008-05-11

I was woken by live piano music at 1 o'clock. Totally felt like luxury. I did not yet write that the family had a piano playing daughter, did I?

General

Sydney has (obviously) a different fauna from what I am used to. The most interesting to me so far is a certain kind of bird which sound as if they loose battery power during their cry. I sure hope to get this recorded at some point.

Another quite unusual thing is, that the traffic lights produce spaceship sounds whenever pedestrians get green around here. At first it freaked me out, as I assumed some electrical device was going nuts, but it's quite a feature, as you are not forced to look at the light all the time, which I found quite hard, if the sun really shines in a bad direction. I recorded the sound, you'll find it in the wave files for this week.

Media

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