Having only spent five days in melbourne, I still do not feel as though I have actually seen the city. I find it generally takes, with most places, at least five days to get to know my way around and feel like I start to know it and Melbourne is massive and that time, especially when I spent at least 2days worth of it stressing about finding a job and buying the laptop and stuff, was not nearly enough. I really did not want to stay any longer though, those five days were more than enough and I was pleased to board my bus to Adelaide last night.
It was to be a 10hour journey and I was dreading the boredom, discomfort, and feeling like s*** from tiredness the next day but actually, it was entirely pleasant! I had been allocated the very front seat on the lower deck of the bus, so I could see right out the windscreen. Although the driver said the bus was fully booked, it obviuosly wasn't as both myself and the woman accross teh aisle from me got a double seat each, to ourselves. The seats were really spacious and comfy and with my socks on, comfy trousers, ipod in and travel pillow under my head, I laid curled up accross the seats, took a sleeping tablet at midnight and awoke in adelaide, six hours later.. This was so far removed from my usual bus experience of tossing and turning that I can't expain, it was great!
Adelaide is frickin HOT! According to variuou sources, yesterday was 40 or 42.. today, I walked past a temperature sign at about 4pm that said 37C and another at 7pm putting it at 35C so I'm guessing the hottest time of day could well have been over 40. It was hot but much more bearably so than it was in Melbourne; here there is less traffic, less people and it is more open and fresh and breezy; I walked around in my flipflops all day today and my feet were only a little bit dirty by the end, compared to the black discraces resulting from Melbourne pavements.
I had a slow start today, went straight to bed when I got to the hostel, the sleeping tablet remnants still hanging around my head and making me veeeeeery sleeeeeeepy, I slept through til 10am! Unheard of! I don't really like getting up that late!
I then took Mr Lappy down to introduce him to the free wifey at Adelaide library and was thrilled to find that the network I logged on to allows you to download whatever the hell you like (not that I downloaded anything dodge mind, just a programme and Adobe) but it's good to be able to do that! Then I went down to the Migration Museum and checked out the part of it that I missed last time I was in Adelaide and it was great! All about the history of the building which used to be an Asylum for the Destitue, where people were sent who couldn't look after themselves, or unmarried women "in trouble" very interesting stuff. It was only two small rooms but with heaps of information and a few videos and artefacts and I was in there for nearly an hour. Having wussed out on the midday heat in the air-conned library and museum, I went down to sit in the shade by the river and read my book for a while; it was peaceful and there were ducks.
My search for harvest work has proved fruitless (see what I did there?), the hostels I have been phoning in SA are still fully booked with no sign of anyone leaving, and the ones in Victoria seem to have no work now or no work for girls. I'm not really sure what to do because I DO want to have my second year here, I don't want to regret not getting it when I had the chance. I think I should be able to see everything I want to in Australia in the next 5months but it will be a bit pushed (I need at least 1wk for Tasmania, want to spend 2months working in Perth, 2weeks traveling up the west coast and a few days around the South West). If I only stay here for one year, then the good thing is I will definitely also have a full year in NZ. I can get to NZ and find a job straight away, maybe try to work somewhere for 6months or so to save up a bit.
I basically need to work wherever I can now because I have run out of money and it really doesn't sound that hopeful from the harvest hostels, I can't just sit here and hope they will soon have room for me. That fact in mind, I spent the afternoon CV-dropping round the pubs of Adelaide. I can't help but feel that it is pointless, I know from experience that it doesn't seem to affect my getting work, however liberally I have sprinkled my resume about a locality, but that it is always a case of "right place, right time". A few places did the usual instant "no work here" bought on no doubt by my Pommie or backpacker status, but a couple were encouraging. In an English Pub, the barmaid said she thought they WERE looking for staff and she would give my CV to the manager tomorrow. And an Italian restaurant actually had a sign in the window advertising for wait staff, so hopefully should get something there. I'll pop back in the Britty place tomorrow and hassle them, it was nice in there! Really like an old English pub, all dark wood bar and optics and stuff, and my Englishness should give me a headstart.
I said I already had my RSA for South Australia, luckily they accept the online course, so I'll get down the library and do that first thing tomorrow (another $75). It says it takes three hours but hopefully I can shoot through it in at least half that, particularly having done the course twice already.
Walking through the streets today, I can see why maybe poeple think adelaide is a bit dull, there were quite a few streets which obviously have businesses and stuff in, which were totally deserted and there aren't nearly as many bars and clubs as in some other cities, but I think I actually like that. I like that adelaide is clean and proper and almost regal, I like that it's so spacious and it has lots of lovely buildings. I could be well happy to spend a couple of months here, there are also heaps of places around Ade that are an hour or two by bus away that I want to explore.
Stopped in my tracks by a row of beautiful lilac blossom trees that I had to take a photo of, I realsied that I had stumbled upon St Francis Xavier Cathedral, which I had seen on the map, and being unable to resist a big cathedral I went in. All of the stained glass windows down one side were orange and with the sun streaming in bathed the whole building in this rosy glow. It was lovely!
I have had stirrings of desire for a few months now to go to a church service, not for religious reasons, but because I like the atmosphere and the singing and stuff. So I decided to go to Sunday evening Mass at St Francis Xavier. It was oh-kay, it's a catholic church and quite grand stuff, with a procession of holy people starting in and a bloke waving a thing of insence everywhere (it smelt good!) but the music and singing, which was the main reason I went, was s***! There were no nice old traditional hymns, no organ, but a s***ty band with a guitar and piano singing thes atrocious modern praise songs that were neither catchy nor easy to sing, nor joyful. They were just terrible. I always thought the catholic church was very traditional, a lot more than the Anglican, especially that is the impression I get from a lot of their stances on things, I don't see how they could accept this music. I tried to sing along, I like singing, but it was just... ugh.
There was a lot of chanting/reciting stuff, like saying it off by heart which I didn't much like, it sounds so mechanical. That old association of churches with dark, cool interiors... gone! This church was bright and orange and very very warm. I don't know if it was badly designed, or just simply coz it's so hot outside, but it was weird. The normal background noise of coughs and rustles was replaced by the soft flap flap of people fanning themselves with their programmes.
They had a collection, proceeded by a VERY long speech about how you should donate to look after the priests and then communion, which I obviuosly didn't take and at one point the priest said "may peace be with you" and the lady next to me turned to me and I thought she wanted to get out of the pew so I stood back from her and she was trying to shake my hand and say "peace be with you" to me. I had just stood there staring at her! What an idiot I felt, she said she was from WA and maybe they didn't shake hands here, so I had to explain that I'm English and actually I've never been to mass before!
I think my main mistake was going to Mass. I realise now that I shoudl have gone to an Evensong in a non-catholic church, coz that's when they have the choir and nice singing and the Psalms, whcih I like too. Adelaide does have another Cathedral, St Peters, which I might go and look at again tomorrow, see what time evensong is, try to suss out if there are choir stalls and an organ because I don't want to sit through another modern-music service ever again!
Oh, the "R-adelaide" comes from people that live here being fed up of everyone else saying Adelaide is boring and prim and proper and a bit poncy. They live here, so obviously they think it's great and interesting and stuff, so they call it Radelaide. And I agree, henceforth it shall be Radelaide to me!