hey everyone

i know the blog’s a little bit sparse but I’m not travelling too much down here, mostly getting into school, and i figured most of you would find statistics and epidemiology a bit dry…i know i am (not that there’s many people reading, pretty sure half of my readership is my parents). almost fell asleep in my first stats class, some things never change. However, infectious disease epidemiology is turning out to be quite interesting. I am the only North American in the class (insisted I am Canadian, no matter how American my accent sounds, which made everyone laugh) and very few are from Australia itself. Almost all are from developing countries- Pakistan, Indonesia, Uganda, Zambia, etc., and have a passionate reason to learn public health to help their countries. HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis are destroying their people, really makes you think about the world. Also, at least 3/4 of my classmates are doctors and work at hospitals/health institutions.

And then there’s me. Compared to these people, I am most definitely underqualified. But they let me in the program anyways. And quite frankly, Toronto’s no stranger to infectious disease. (or Guelph and that awkward Norwalk virus).

Over the weekend, Beth and Mark from Michigan (from Contiki) came down on Saturday, so we had a mini Contiki reunion. It was a little weird pointing out all the tourist sites in downtown Melbourne. It was a little crowded, the Moomba festival was going on, with a carnival at one end of the Yarra River, and fireworks over it, and on Sunday, they had dragon boat races which i completely missed. But we missed the day’s activities, a waterskiing competition and the Birdman Rally, where people dress up like airplanes/things that fly and jump into the river. But they don’t glide nicely into it, it’s almost cartoonish when they walk off the dock and gravity does the rest. The greatest thing about Moomba? the name. Officially, it’s “let’s get together and have fun”. Literally?

“up your bum” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moomba

One last thing. I know most of you are busy shovelling snow (or for a certain dog, running and sliding and making it yellow) and hate it right now but I miss it greatly. When it’s 37C out and the sun beats so hard that you can feel your skin burning and it’s going to be like that for the rest of the week, and possibly next week, and when it’s the only time you see other people using the crappy pool as a space to tan and you’re the only one who’s actually swimming and they give you weird looks for doing that…you tend to appreciate snow.

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