Saturday, May 20, 2006

New worlds

I left Ngukurr in a hurry when I realised all of a sudden the river wasn't going to go down quick enough for me to drive out and there were very few options other than to hitch-hike out in a plane. Luckily that all went smoothly- though the pilot warned me before I go on that if they turned out to have extra passengers waiting in the next community (Minyerri) they would have to leave me there. I was relieved to not be trying to find a way out of Minyerri.

Katherine always seems like a luxurious oasis after Ngukurr and I spent a whole after noon just enjoying drinking nice water from the tap and considering all the things I would buy in the supermarket! It was a culture shock I knew it would be and I tried to take it very slowly, it was made easy by all the wonderful linguist (and other) mob there. It took me a few days to be able to ring everyone up and talk and tell them I had arrived. I suppose it took me a few days to arrive back. At first I missed Ngukurr and everyone terribly, but I have been on a few adventures since then that have kept me busy..

After a day or so lying by a pool in Darwin I flew to Sydney, had breakfast with Nic, Ruben and Marlo bought the most beautiful dress ever then flew to Armidale- went to uni unpacked all my gear said hello, fell asleep for 13hours and then got up and flew to Brisbane (via Sydney) where I stayed a a big beautiful hotel in the city and spent a day at an 'orientation' seminar with the 20 or so other Fulbright scholars. It was actually much more relaxed and comfortable than I though it would be. The main message seemed to be that they were there to give administrative and cultural support and could everyone please give some media attention to the Fulbright commission and raise it's profile, but other than that the scholarship is completely no strings attached, we are free to change our research focus at any time... The other students were (of course) extremely interesting and interested people.

Thursday night was the awards night and my parents and supervisors and I put on our finery and had a wonderful evening, eating fantastic food, watching some good performances and being substantially photographed with all kinds of VC's (vice chancellors), ministers and important diplomats. And I spent most of the time feeling well cherished, honoured and slightly overwhelmed by the company I was in. I stayed up very late talking and drinking and winding down...

Since I arrived back in Armidale I have had a good 15 hour sleep and slowly expanding my sense of self back into my own home. Feeling everything out carefully and considering everything slowly. It is good to be home.

2 Comments:

Blogger Catalin said...

Whaddup, Sof? What are you doing, thinking, feeling lately?

12:42 pm  
Blogger Sophie said...

I feel a bit too overwhelmed to write at the moment- here are some photos instead!

5:53 pm  

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