Perks of Being a Tyneesha: A Two Month Long Novel!

This post is part 8 of 21 in the series:
Perks of Being a Tyneesha
Perks of Being a Tyneesha: A Two Month Long Novel!

Do you remember being like seven years old and having to write a ‘recount’ when you come back to school after the holidays? Yeah, I was not too fond of those. I never felt like I had anything to say, and I’ve never been a massive fan of writing about myself. But sometimes, growing up means becoming your English teacher, and my recount is overdue. It’s been two months since my last personal update, and I’m both glad and exhausted to say that it’s been a huge two months. So there’s plenty to talk about; buckle up, besties.

O Week Festivities

So for those of you who (for some reason) don’t know what o week is, it’s the last week of uni holidays/week before uni starts. Generally, it involves many different events being put on, both on and off-campus. It’s a week-long bender for some and means absolutely nothing to others. UOW put on what they called “Campus Fest” in late February to celebrate. Since people haven’t been on campus for years now, they pulled out all the stops to ensure that the event was attractive to students & motivated them to get involved.

While it’s great to see people on campus, it’s also bizarre. I drove up to the outskirts of Sydney one of the mornings of O-week. I collected a dear friend who was rostered to run the stand with me. That was back when the train lines were randomly out of order. I realised that I had never met this person face-to-face at some point on the drive. That is the case with most of the people in my course. We’ve been aware of each other for years, but some have never met. Such is life. I drove my friend back home at the end of the day, and what should have taken 28 minutes took a bit longer because I drove through the most shocking fog.

Being the ever-eager opportunist that I am meant that I had some fun things to do that week. By which I mean I helped operate the stall for the club that I’m an executive for and ran around doing interviews and content collection for UOWTV. Admittedly I put my hand up to help with reporting the event because I was told we would have access to the headliner acts – which would have been fantastic, but last-minute disorganisation and management issues meant that we did not get to interview Montaigne, Ziggy Ramo or Alex the Astronaut. I did, however, put my big girl journalist pants on and interviewed the vice-chancellor of UOW and the production manager of Yours & Owls. More on that later, though.

Cleaning up after mercury retrograde & the Nan Tien Temple

If you recall my last catch-up post, you’ll know that mercury retrograde earlier this year saw the death of my precious laptop. Dad came down to Wollongong just before uni started up with a replacement laptop and the TV sitting dormant in our dining room back home. After wasting two rolls, I learned how to correctly load film into my camera. So it’s safe to say that all is well. While Dad was here, we finally managed to make it to see the Nan Tien Temple. Well, some of it. It was raining (shocker), so we didn’t explore as much as we would have liked.

You might have heard I contracted a funky little virus by the name of Miss Rona?

I had a great time leading up to the first week of university. I went to concerts, met up with friends, conducted interviews, and saw one awfully fatal drag show in an audience of over 700 people. If I had to hazard a bet – I’d say that’s where it all went wrong. I haven’t at all been subtle about having gotten covid. Obviously, I wrote a whole post about the matter. It wasn’t fun, but if you’re particularly interested in reading my overdramatic covid fueled rant, you can do so here.

I’ve been sitting in classrooms again (finally)

I sat the first week of uni out. Stayed cooped up in my covid dungeon of a room. But I eventually got back on campus! It’s so much more motivating seeing everyone in person. The peer pressure of being in a room with other concentrating people gets me through the day.

This semester I’m doing some exciting subjects. The most interesting of which is called ‘newsroom’. It’s exactly what it sounds like. We all run around pretending that we work in an actual newsroom, producing stories to a 3 pm deadline. So far, I’m really proud of what I’ve come up with. I was put on sports reporting the first week and miraculously pulled through with this audio piece. I interviewed some prominent drag queens from the Wollongong scene in the second week. I wrote a story surrounding the importance of queer-inclusive venues.

I’m also doing a podcasting subject – which I love, but I’m shit out of ideas for an upcoming audio piece. So if you’re reading this and know anyone with a great story to tell, let me know. I’m also doing a subject where we basically review sci-fi movies. I’m even writing some short stories for an assignment, so watch out for the first one – I aim to have it out by Friday.

Places to be, people to see…

Being allowed out into the world has been good for several reasons. The most immediate is the return of live music. I got to see pacific avenue a few weeks ago, which is absolutely incredible, considering we were finally allowed to dance on that day. After holding on to tickets for two years, I finally saw The Vanns a few weeks ago. I’ve got a few shows scheduled to see throughout the year, and I could not be happier about that. The most challenging thing about this pandemic is the sudden jarring absence of live music from my life. It’s indescribably good to be back.

If it doesn’t stop raining, I will have no choice but to scream.

One thing about me – I’m generally a pretty big fan of rain. I like the smell, the vibes, and the valid excuse to stay inside and relax all day. However, you know what they say about ‘too much of a good thing’. Lately, there has been far, far too much rain. I think it’s genuinely affecting my mood and the mental state of almost everyone around me. I’m reasonably lucky that where I am hasn’t been flooded out. I’m privileged just to be experiencing general annoyance at the circumstance and not a straight-up life-altering disaster. But if there’s a suitable space for me to complain needlessly, it’s here and now.

Only two things in life are certain – war & fuel prices

I’ve already written pretty thoroughly about this. I can’t go past mentioning that since the last time I wrote a perks post, a literal war has started, and the price of fuel has doubled. Not happy, Jan (by Jan, I mean Vladimir).

Mentally I am in Bunning’s plant section.

In the last three months, I have acquired, by any means, a whole family of new plants. Perhaps the boldest being my new monster. I don’t have photos of them all, but I’ll have to get a family portrait sometime soon.

I managed to load film correctly (and it turned out well!)

As previously mentioned, I had a bit of a blimp in the “learning to shoot film” process. I was heartbroken to find myself with two blank rolls of film after Christmas. I am, however, proud to announce that I eventually figured it out, and the results aren’t half bad.

Yours & Owls is underwater, and they won’t let me swim.

If you’re miraculously unaware, Yours & Owls is a huge music festival and music promotion organisation local to Wollongong. The festival is referred to as “gong Christmas”. It is genuinely one of the biggest, if not the most significant, event in Wollongong year-round. I did not buy tickets for this year’s festival because it seemed like a lot of money to spend on what i considered a slightly underwhelming lineup. However, following my excellent work on O Week, I got the opportunity to attend the festival. For free, on the condition that my partner and I capture social media content for the uni’s partnership with Yours& Owls while we’re there. This was a massive opportunity for me, so naturally, I was pretty devastated when they decided to cancel the festival because of the bad weather and dangerous flash flooding. Hopefully, this opportunity comes back up at a later date. It gave me two extra days to get some assignments done on the plus side. You win some; you lose some.

On next month’s episode…

I’m going home for easter next week. Fuel is expensive, but I’ve been homesick lately, so it’s worth every drop. Next month, I have a few concerts to go to, including the ever-cool Stella Donelly, so I’m excited about that too. My 21st birthday is less than a month away. If you’re reading this, you have to get me a present. Yes, I do accept gifts in cash. Jokes aside, though, I am very excited. I make a huge deal of my birthday most years, so the opportunity to be ever more extra on my 21st milestone is beyond tempting. Hopefully, I won’t neglect to write another update next month because I suspect I’ll have a lot to say.