Friday, July 27, 2012

Humble Hobart

View of Mt. Wellington right outside the School of Art
I've been in Hobart for about three weeks now. Just Hobart. I'm a bit disappointed that I haven't explored anywhere else in Tassie yet. But I have gotten to know Hobart pretty well. Since I have to walk down to the city every time I go to one of my drawing classes, I've been spending a lot of time meandering, getting lost, and eventually finding my way. Luckily, it is not a very big city, so getting lost is not as dangerous as getting lost in a place like NYC. I've found from meeting some "Hobartians" that this is the kind of place where everyone knows everyone. It's a quaint little bubble with everything you want in a city -- a decent night life (less clubs more bars), a cafe on every corner, a waterfront, and an exceptional art district -- with an added close community atmosphere.
The Teddy Bear Shop .. Hobart you're adorable.

I just wish that I had an unlimited budget for my time here. I could spend over $300 a week between all of the cafes, restaurants, and shops. It's quite expensive to live here. The standard of living is just much higher than the US....and from what I have seen it's based on more than just money. People generally want to help each other if they can. This lends to the sense of community I get. The locals I have met are more than willing to show me a good time because I'm new to town. Oh and I'd say a sense of humor is more a part of everyday life. Maybe it's the laid-back island effect. The other day in my drawing class my mentor was talking to me about my project, and he couldn't understand my concept. I kind of started to freak out -- if my mentor can't understand the message I am trying to put out there how is anyone else going to? But then he asked me if I thought Americans were more serious than Australians. After some thought, I realized how true it is. I get about 20 "no worries" a day. There are no number grades, a "High Distinction" is considered the highest and is equivalent to an 80 or above. My lecturer for a course called "Space, Place and Nature" laughs at himself every 2 minutes, and picked up some wallaby scat the other day as an example of a project we could do.

Wouldn't be a city without motorbikes, alleys, and graffiti!

Needless to say, I am really enjoying getting to know a new place and some new folk. The quirky community reminds me a lot of Clark .. which is both a good thing and a bad thing. It's very comforting because it's what I am used to. But on the down side, it's a reminder of what I am missing at home. I'm getting a bit homesick and antsy to see parks, museums, and other touristy stuff. But I have plenty of time. Until then Hobart will do just fine.

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