Education

Aus Land…

Hey Milieu Pals,
 
I am finally in Australia! Despite a few, or perhaps many, complications I have finally made it and in one relative piece!
 
Since my departure from Johannesburg International yesterday (18/11/05) at 16:45 till now (19/11/05) I have not slept a wink! That is a total of 15 flying ours (stopped in Perth than got a connecting flight to Melbourne) and a total of 19 hours since I last woke up. The strange thing though, is that I do not feel tired at all and it is currently 11pm as i write this entry in Australia (there is a 9 hour time difference).
 
Also during that time, I have called my parents at least 4 times… thank goodness for roaming! I will however probably be switching to a ‘pay as you go’ sim card within the near future to try and alleviate the overall costs of roaming.
 
Let’s start from the beginning:
 
The Departure
Friday morning was incredibly hectic. My entire family and I were running around like blue arse fires trying to sort out all the tiny last details of my trip. The worst part, however, was the final packing of my bag.
 
Now our luggage is apparently not allowed to be over 20kg, so after packing my bag we weighed it to see the final weight. To my horror it was 33kg’s! From then onwards it was a real mission to determine what to take and what to leave behind. Needless to say, we cut down my luggage by removing items that seemed unnecessary. The funny thing is, according to Murphy’s Law, I know need those items. Also, my ‘ companions’ each had luggage that averaged about 26kg… imagine how miffed I was at finding this out since I left most of my stuff at home to accommodate the 20kg rule. On top of that I left my laptop behind (this is what I’m most sore about) because we were certain that individuals were only allowed to take one piece of hands on luggage. It turns out that I could have taken it and worst of all  I do have an internet connection in my dorm room… but have now been reduced to typing on an ‘oil’ based decrepid-KFC like keyboard! Now I know what its like to be a ‘real’ student. LOL!
 
The Flight
After meeting up with my African Comrades, we made our way onto the plane. The first flight was on or local carrier, SAA (South African Airways). We were rather disappointed with the plane itself, particularly because it was lacking the usual standard features required to enjoy an international flight, such as personal monitors. Regardless we accepted our fate and tried to make the best of it. As projected, seat complications arose with SAA booking some members in really odd places around the plane. Then there was the whole "I’m sorry but you are in my seat"… obviously I was in the right seat, but you know how those things are.
 
The flight seemed to be rather acceptable, you know… the usual baby crying, someone snoring over there and there, and the gossip between the flight attendants about ‘what this passenger said and did’ and so on and so forth. There were, however, two rather unrelated yet unexpected events that took place.
 
The first was that some man, who apparently sufferered from high-blood pressure, fainted and was rushed oxygen. There was even talk (from over hearing the flight attendants) of landing the plane to get the guy off. But, after the nurse/doctor sorted the guy out and changed his seats, all was well. The other event was the occurence of a very sweet old ‘african’ lady who was classified as handicapped due to her age and thus frail body. I took it upon myself to help her out where I could, offering her things to drink, getting her a blanket and continously calling the flight attendants for support. In the end she was very grateful amd continously thanked me. What can I say, I’m a sucker for the less fortunate and have high levels of respect for senior citizens.
 
The Transfer
During the transfers to the different planes which were necessary (SA -> Perth -> Melbourne) my ‘African’ comrades came under some unusual spotlights. Several of the guys were stopped and searched for drugs and hidden explosive in true ‘African’ style! LOL! There was only one major problem with the tranfers and that one of our group members were without luggage… yes… SAA had lost one of our members’ luggage… Typical African Carrier. Anyway we made the transfers with Quantus taking over the finding and retreival of the lost luggage. Once we boarded the ‘internal’ Quantas flight (Perth – Melbourne) we were wowed by the impressiveness of the plane. It was adorned with LCD monitors, the attendants were friendly and always wore a smile (unlike SAA attendants who thought they were doing you the favour), the cutlery was metal and glasses were actually made out of ‘glass’, lest not forget how delicious the food was (SAA food was rubbish… tasteless and kind of like rubber)!
 
Aus Land
We finally made it to Aus, after more members were searched again… and made our long 45min trip to Monash Australia’s Clayton Campus. The Campus itself is very old, over 60 years I think, and hasn’t been updated. Staff are friendly and courteous yet the facilities and technology available are no where near the standards of the South African Campus. I am so proud to be apart of Monash South Africa now… and will no longer moan about inadequate facilities. Our University is so Modern compared to the Aus one that its scary.
 
Anyway, I’ve got to try and go to bed now as we have another long day tomorrow… well, that’s if I can walk. Of all the things I manage to do, I decided to get blisters on the heels of both of my feet. My right heel was actually so bad that it was bleeding and I didn’t even know it. Thankfully, I had bought some blister patches (thank goodness for a sixth sense) and have now applied them. I will now need to go and buy new shoes as I only took two pairs to wear and now one has caused me bodily harm. Also its dead cold here, especially in the evenings, and I know wish I never took out my Diesel jacket from my bag.
 
Well Milieu Pals, check back soon as I will try to write as much as I can when I can!
 
(P.S.: Aus land is so awesome and safe… walked for over 30km today, after 9pm, and not even a hint of a mugger, psycho, druggy, beggar… you know, the usual SA crowd! LOL!)
 

Exams, Exams, Exams…

Hey Milieu Pals,
 
I know I promised updates since before the Pokemon post (which I’m still loving ) but I’ve just been really busy studying for exams. So far I have written three of my four exams.
 
I wrote Business Marketing today, by far the hardest exam out of the three I have written. Last week Wednesday (26/10/05) I wrote Psychology: Organisation Behaviour and Integrated Marketing Communications. It was incredibly hectic to write two exams in one day, but I managed! I only have one left, Organisational Communications, buts its only on the 11th November, so I have plenty of time to study for that one  (Uh Oh… procrastination alert! LOL!)
 
Other than that, not much has happened. I have just been studying and studying… the hard life of a student… !
 
I am however, looking forward to going overseas! Yes, that’s right, I’m going abroad! Unfortunately its not with the folks, its with the university instead. As most of you know, I was on the SRC this year. For our ‘efforts’ (even those who actually didn’t do anything) we will be going to the Australian campus of our university. We’ll be spending two lovely weeks there; going on tours, attending seminars and balls etc. It sounds awesome! Don’t worry, should I have access to the web while I’m there, I’ll be sure to post my daily outings on Hans’ Milieu!
 
In other news, our Media Centre will FINALLY be installed on Wednesday. I’ve been waiting since August for this damn thing. It’s going to be superb though and I simply can’t wait! Once we have it, and I’ve played around on it and discovered all the features, I’ll post a review of it on Perceiving Reality.
 
I have also re-re-re-reconfirmed my Xbox 360 pre-order… I really can’t wait for that (been waiting since early May)! I sound like a broken record, better yet, like one of those kids on a long trip who keeps saying "Are we there yet?" because "I can’t wait for it"!
 
Well Milieu Pals  stay tuned because  I’ll update when and as soon as I can!

"Karate Chop"!

Hey Everyone!
 
It has been a while since I last posted. Since Jayden’s birth quite a few things have happened.
 
Jayden came down with ‘Yellow Jaundice’ but is all well and fine now. Cherise, unfortunately, has been exhibiting symptoms of post natal depression. To cure this, my cousin Freddy and I, decided to take her out, something the three of us used to do regularly (aka The 3 Stooges). We had such a blast and I was glad to see that she was starting to be herself again. I have decided to take her out more often when I can, just to make sure she is alright and kept in check.
 
Last week Friday (16/09/05) was a really good day for me. I finally received my DVD sets (Smallville Season 4 and One Tree Hill Seasons 1 & 2) that I had ordered from Amazon.com (a brilliant site, I’d recommended it to anyone). On top of that… something I have been waiting for, which cost an arm and a leg, also arrived.
 
From the sunny state of Kansas, thanks to e-bay, I finally received my XBOX 360 E3 2005 Limited Edition Faceplate number 4008/5000 (you can see a picture of it below). It has already been classified as a hard to get collectible, so I reckon it was a very worthwhile investment. It cost me a total of $183 (US) which equates to approximately R1170. I’m thrilled about it, all I need now is my XBOX 360, which I have already pre-ordered through have2have.co.za (US/NTSC version).
 

 
 
On an educational note:
 
The SRC problems I was having seem to have been sorted out, not entirely, but better than they were before.
 
In other news, Mika and I had to do our presentations for Marketing (2430) and Psychology (2112).
The Marketing presentation went very well, better than expected, as the lecturer is quite a ‘tight ass’  !
 
For the psychology lecture we had to run a training session whereby we were required to teach the class a particular skill within a certain period of time that adhered to particular set objectives.
 
Since Mika and I are known procrastinators , we waited until the week before our presentation was due to actually decide on a topic. Eventually we went with teaching self defence through the Tenshinkan style of Karate. It was a brilliant option as my father is a Tenshinkan Master and we were thus exposed to the style in its entirety.
 
Mika and I totally dressed up for the part of Tenshinkan Sensei’s who come from the ‘Hannika’ Martial Arts Studio. Needless to say, we had great fun doing our training session, performing the moves, handing out prizes (DVD’s, belts, ‘nin-chucks’) and providing a bit of Sushi  .
 
You can see the pictures we used in the presentation within the photograph album labelled: A Kung Fu Story.
 
Our mid-semester break is coming up again, I can’t wait! One whole week of nothing… well not quite as we have two assignments due for the Wednesday we return and another for the week after that… yeah, tell me about it  ! LOL!
 
Well, I will hopefully write again soon, but probably only after I have attended RAGE (Really Awesome Gaming Event) next week Saturday (01/10/05).
 
Keep checking back for more details!

Finally Done!

I have finally finished with most of my assignments, of course, it’s never over… but at least for now, it is!
 
Other than that, there isn’t much to report, well except for the problems I’m having within my SRC. I won’t say anything yet, but when the time is right, you will know all!
 
Our Spring Ball is next week Saturday and so is the lauch of the Sony PSP (Playstation portable)! Can anyone guess which one I am most excited for? If you guessed the Spring Ball… then you are dead wrong. Not because I won’t enjoy it. but mainly because that is the primary source of my problems with the SRC. For now, lets just regard those problems as ‘lack of communication’ and ‘creative differences’.
 
Yeah, the PSP! It’s going to be so cool! I’m actually really looking forward to it. I want to see if Sony is actually capable of living up to the hype surrounding their first foray into the portable gaming market. But, for those of you who know, the product I am most anxious about, is the XBOX 360. I simply can’t wait for it!
 
Once again, for my American/Canadian, European and Aussie friends (and everyone else) please take some time out of your busy lives and pay a visit to your local game’s store for me. I just want to know availability and pre-order information for the XBOX 360 console (don’t forget games and accessories!
 
In other exciting news, we are finally getting a Media Centre computer for the lounge. I can’t wait to get it, it has been too long already! Once we have it, I will post pictures and a full review… because everyone should have one!
 
Anyway, I hope you are all well and that life is good. When you can please drop me an e-mail every now and again… or update your blog if you have one!