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Journals from James Cook University, Townsville, Australia

2012-03-31 Floods, Beetles, and Soccer

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Where does the time go? I feel like I’ve been here for so long, but that the semester here is much too short. It’s rainy season here in the rainforest and that means BUCKETS of rainfall for days. We’ve had a few storm warnings but nothing terribly serious. Part of the walk from the Student Lodge to the university is an underpass that goes beneath the highway, there’s a river that runs next to it and more than once it’s flooded the underpass. In Oregon, when there are puddles and flooding, people put on their boots because it’s so cold. In Cairns, it’s so warm, people more often just take off their shoes, wade through barefoot, and put their shoes back on when they get to the building. It’s awesome!

When the sky clears, we’ve been experiencing an invasion of little black beetles. Something about being cooped up during the rain causes them to multiply like crazy when it clears up. I had to scoop six of them out of the dryer the other day before I could use it.

So when I’m not going to class with floodwater up to my ankles or battling beetles for my right to clean clothes, I’m playing soccer. Turns out James Cook University Cairns campus had just this year started a women’s soccer team. I’ve been wishing I could play on a team again since I graduated high school, so this is something of a dream come true. It’s not very structured, being a new program and all, and about half the girls have never been on an outdoor soccer team before, but everyone is very positive and supportive. We all just want to play and have fun and we are improving by leaps and bounds. My coach teases me when I have trouble understanding what he’s saying, telling me “oh, you Canadians…” even though he knows I’m from the States.

 The picture above is of the kind of geckos that are all over the Lodge.  At night, if my window attracts enough moths, they’ll start crawling on the outside of the glass trying to catch some dinner. I caught this little guy eating a snack on a wall by the stairs.  

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