Place in my heart

Written by Ingrid Askeland, BSc International Development

It’s been around two weeks since I got home from Australia, and I miss it every day, today I was especially sad and decided to read through all the beautiful letters my friends back in Melbourne wrote me before I left. All the sweet and kind words they wrote to me made me cry and I started to think back to everything I experienced whilst abroad.

The first day upon arrival, me and this girl called Chelsea which I study with in Reading had our busiest day so far, trying to get sorted with all the bedroom and kitchen supplies we needed, I have grateful that I had her, I don’t think I would be able to figure it all out on my own. That very first day I also met one of my soon to be best friends and partner in crime, Haamid. Even though I was used to living in a dorm with a lot of people, readjusting and adapting to different personalities will still be one of the biggest struggles you will face as a student. It is a learning process and even though I really did enjoy it (even so much that I’m moving back to University accommodation), it was definitely challenging. I will never forget the people I lived with, especially not the Australians, they will always have a special place in my heart. For everyone that are considering going abroad, but are scared to leave their safe environment and their friends and family behind, I promise it will be worth it, Australia has felt welcoming since day one, and none of the International I have talked to had a bad experience. You make friends for life and your host country will become like a second home to you.

Australia is such an amazing place, the animal life, the people, the atmosphere, the nature, the food and just everything, I love it, and I will have to go back sometime. I think one of the best experiences in Australia was going hiking in the Grampians, and on our way back seeing a whole pack of wild kangaroos grazing in the middle of a camping site. I also loved going back with me friend to her hometown Hobart, in Tasmania, where I got to do wine tours and food festivals and well as seeing wild kangaroos and wallabies every day, I cannot forget about the Tasmanian devil, that was also incredible. I cannot stop listing up things I experienced because everything was equally incredible. Going to New Zealand is something I will never forget, and seeing all the sights from the Lord of the Rings movies, like Hobbiton and the hike to see Mount Doom was amazing. In New Zealand I also got the opportunity to fulfil my dreams of skydiving and the adrenalin rush you get from that is just unbelievable, I will have to do that again.

Other than all the travelling I did, I also went to my lectures, I just have to applaud La Trobe University as they are truly an amazing institution. The campus area was modern and organised, the lecturers were inspiring and they were all very passionate about their subjects.

I would like to thank La Trobe University and the University of Reading for providing me with the opportunities and amazing experiences, I am forever grateful.

Love from Ingrid Askeland


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