Nicknames, mentos, buffets, karaoke and 4 nights in Canberra

23 Mar

I am lying in bed right now enjoying not talking after a massive 4.5 day talk fest. We learnt a lot about Philippines, about development, about cross-cultural communication and living overseas. We heard but didn’t really take in a lot about evacutations, infectious tropical diseases, insurance and the australian aid program. All in the name of pre departure training.


The Philippines crew. In the Philippines, you always do one photo normal, one photo wacky!

I met so many amazing people this week, but as always, there were some duds as well. It exhausts me to talk to people continuously and the script got pretty predictable after the first couple of hours (“Hi, what’s your name? Where are you goin? What’s your assignment?” and so forth in that boring way….). But I laughed and laughed and laughed with so many people and especially with the Philippines crew, which makes me so ridiculously excited to spend a year in the company of these amaze balls people for many more laughs. There were a few other awesome peeps who I wish were coming to phils but I know this will be an experience that we will share no matter where in the world we are and I think we will be friends forever *cue Vitamin C*.


Thanks Rydges Lakeside!

In a nutshell, we gave about 30 nicknames, some people gaining multiple nicknames. I ate about 100 individually wrapped mentos, ate at least 15 hash browns and countless fat chips. We took 2 yoga classes and spent many minutes on the grassy nature strip outside the Rydges. I drank too many wines and talked about work life balance with the assistant director of an important government department. I talked about being a filipino-looking australian with a filipina and got to hear about election relation killings (good for a job going into an election). I learnt about conference romances and learnt that the comfiest pillows and mattress do not equal the best nights sleep.


One of our very many food breaks

I can’t wait to be deployed. This time in a month, I will be writing from Manila. Better go and warm up my vocal chords for some serious karaoke baby!


Philippines Thank God You're Here


So many Mentos!!


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