The worldwide Augustana College experience

Orchestra, Hunter Valley, and Animals


This past weekend was one of the busier ones, although at first I did not feel like it would be.

Ever since I knew I was coming to Sydney, I wanted to see a performance at the Sydney Opear House.  On Friday, that happened.  Eleven of us made a night of classy dining, nice clothing, and an orchestral performance in the Concert Hall of the Opera House.  After getting all dressed up in suits / slacks / dresses / etc., we ate at the Waterfront, which was really good (I tried the catch of the day- swordfish).  Then we moved on to the Opera House.  It was raining at this point — which was unfortunate, but we got there in good shape.  We watched Mahler’s 1: The Oddyssey, which featured work from Mahler, including his Symphony #1 in D.  The first piece was a surprise in which I knew parts of already (one from Strauss ).  All in all, a great evening, though by the time we left it was pouring rain.

The next day most of our group enjoyed some Wine Tasting at Hunter Valley.  A few hours away from Sydney, this place is widely known for its wine.  We went to a few vineyards and tried different types of wine.  I had my favorites, and other wines not so much.  There was also a cheese tasting portion, which most of them were good.  I was looking forward to that.

Sunday, we all went to the Taronga Zoo as a group.  Again, it was raining that day (it rained the whole weekend).  So on the bright side we probably would not have gone to the beach, therefore it was a good day to go to the zoo.  For those who know me, it will not be a surprise that I would like to see the elephants the most.  They are my favorite animal.  And, I got to see them.  There was a special session where the keepers talked about them and we watched them play.  It was cool.  I also got to see some unique animals and others that I was somewhat familiar with.  I thought it was a good zoo.  My ONLY complaint was that …. unfortunately …. I did not see a platypus.  Long story short — they are shy and can get stressed easily with people, so the workers have to make it so platypuses have access to other surroundings not seen by people.  That’s where they were.  It was sad because I was of course looking forward to seeing them.  There’s always next time.

This weekend a large group of people are going to Cairns, but since I’ve already gone, this will be a quieter weekend for me.  My plan is go to some beaches, look for good souvenirs, and enjoy my time in Sydney since the weeks are winding down.  I don’t know how I feel quite yet about leaving back to cold weather .. and school.  But it’s strange how fast this experience has gone.

Until next time, cheers mates!

2 Responses to “Orchestra, Hunter Valley, and Animals”

  1. Who is the goofy looking one in the white suit?

    What a great cultural experience and in warm weather to boot.

    I don’t remember college being this fun.

    Do you guys ever work?

    Be safe and enjoy the experience.

    Norm Deets

  2. You guys must have had such fun. First of all I’ve never been in Australia and probably I’ll never go there either (at least not this lifetime) being in Europe and all.
    Also when I went to college, as I was working and doing college part time, it was so different then…I think I missed all the fun in the college. All I did was studying and then going home in the evening to my hubby. It was ok but I still miss something and I don’t really know what it is…miss the fun I could have had, I guess.

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