“I had a plan to visit Australia already five years ago. I imagined this trip as a great holiday – hang out on the beach and maybe doing a little bit of work. Back then I had to postpone my plans, but few years later I received an opportunity to start studying in Sydney. Now I have been here almost a year, but I have to admit that it has been quite different from what I expected.
Initially I didn’t like Sydney at all. It was very crowded and tiring. Also, it was summer and the heat was intolerable. For me +30 C is too much, how about +42 C? When I first arrived, I spent most of the time looking for work and a place to live. After a while I found a job in hospitality, but I soon realized that many businesses in this sector are hugely profit-oriented. Workers are often underpaid and have to work long hours and are allowed short breaks only. It was very tricky to combine time between work and my studies due to constantly changing work schedule. I never knew whether I would have enough shifts for next week − this kind of instability made be very anxious.
It took a long time before things started to look better. I found a good job and most importantly I was doing really well at my course. I also took more time to discover the city. On weekends I went hiking in the nature. I actually think that Sydney is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. However; you need to take time to enjoy what it has to offer – coastal walks, fabulous views, beaches.
There are people living here from all over the world and this makes Sydney culturally very diverse. I have not felt any negative attitude towards me. It is a very welcoming environment.
At the beginning there were many ups and downs, but now I won’t mind staying in Sydney for a few more years. I feel I have finally adjusted to the busy lifestyle. In long term I still plan to return to Estonia as I miss my friends and family. Also I have learned to appreciate more the relaxed environment back home.”