Good morning, everyone! Today’s a crazy rainy day, and the next few days in Brisbane aren’t looking much better. It’s 24 degrees, and just pouring. We have thunderstorms planned for the next few days – until next Thursday. What a disappointment!
Anyways, this week was my first week of school, and I loved it. Here you can see the schedule that I had for the first week. I had to dip out of a lot of yoga/fitness classes because I didn’t feel like going. Getting there is always half the battle! And, unfortunately, I sometimes lose that battle.In light of all the events that have happened over the last couple of weeks over in the US, this tweet really stood out to me. What powerful words. I’ve been following the incredibly articulate, thoughtful, patriotic, and compassionate students of Stoneman Douglas High School since the event, and every day I am impressed by the momentum they’ve gained. What an incredible group of young leaders.
Here are some of my class notes! I am taking four courses this semester, and they are:
- BIOL3009: Arthropods and Human Health
- SOCY2179: Sex, Drugs, and Disease
- SWSP2211: Individual Development and Health Care
- PSYC3132: Health Psychology
I don’t know if I have a favourite yet, because they all differ from each other quite a bit. I am trying to link the courses together as I work through the material. For instance, in Individual Development (a Sociology course), we discuss marginalized populations and how people in third-world countries are susceptible to diseases such as malaria. Then, in my Arthropods course, we discuss the mechanisms behind malaria, and how exactly it is transmitted.
I am getting a personal trainer! I felt that it was more “worth it” to get a 10-class personal training class rather than a fitness pass. Starting Tuesday, I’ll be working with a lovely woman called Amy to meet some fitness goals. On the right side, you’ll see my academic to-do list. I’ve only been in school for a week and there’s already plenty to be done! I love it.
I don’t have much stuff in my room, so it isn’t too hard to keep it tidy.
L: Here is one of my lecture classrooms. I really like it because it isn’t extraordinarily big. The entire classroom will seat about forty students, so I think that’s just right.
R: Toowong Village is the local mall. I love this place!
- broccoli, cauliflower rice, squash, tomatoes, red pepper, cheddar and gruyere, 1 fried egg, 4 pieces fried halloumi
- cauliflower rice, squash, 6 pieces fried halloumi
Some things that I really want to make include crepes with brie, apple, and turkey (or flatbreads, using the same ingredients), stuffed peppers, or spaghetti squash with veggies and cheese.
I did end up making something like that, using a hearty whole grain bun from Baker’s Delight, creamy brie, and some sliced turkey.
- 1 medium cucumber, truffle dip, smoked salmon dip
- 1 whole wheat grain bun, 4 medium slices turkey, 1/2 triangle of brie
Deliciousness – one for dessert, and one for breakfast. I recently discovered how tasty it is to crumble up a LARABAR and serve it on yogurt. Love this!
- plain Greek yogurt, 1/2 peanut butter LARABAR, 2 squares nougat chocolate
- plain Greek yogurt, 2 peaches, 1/2 peanut butter LARABAR
One afternoon, I visited a restaurant called Gauge. When I looked at the menu previously, I was 99% sure that I wanted the cavatelli, cashew cream, zucchini, black garlic dish. However, upon speaking to one of the kind waitresses, who recommended the pan-fried mahi-mahi with caramelized cream, tomato, and dill, I changed my mind. This was good, but not worth $32. I was also surprised by the very long wait (surprising, because I normally dine alone so food comes to me quite quickly) of approximately 40 minutes and the little serving size. Was expecting… a little more for $32 – at least some bread or greens on the side.
For dessert, I had a very unique dish: the black garlic bread with brown butter, burnt vanilla. It sounds weird. It was weird. I’ll try my best to describe this:
- First of all, I’ve never tasted ANYTHING quite like this. It was like the time that I tried mushroom ice cream at the Sunshine Coast – I didn’t have any expectations, but was full of curiosity.
- This had the texture of banana bread, but a little less ‘crumbly’. As if it were a banana bread crossed with a yeast bread. I feel like I wouldn’t be able to crumble this between my fingers – I’d have to tear it. Perhaps the texture was like a banana bread made with oil rather than butter.
- The flavour was sweet, but not overwhelmingly sweet. Of course, I had the rich brown butter on the side. The cake itself was a bit like a toffee or date cake in flavour, with rich notes of garlic.
- The garlic flavour didn’t really shine through until after each bite, when you get a garlicky aftertaste. Black garlic, to me, tastes just like regular garlic.
- Definitely an interesting experience. Do I regret ordering it? Not at all. I finished every crumb on the plate, and kind of wanted more. But would I order it next time? No.
I had the opportunity to attend a cool convention called the Mind Body Spirit convention, where there were hundreds of vendors selling things like essential oils, yoga mats, yoga attire, turmeric, vegan treats, and so much more. I saw lots of unique things like pumpkin seed meal, and vegan coconut-cashew ice cream (which I got a delicious sample of). It was a lovely experience, though most of the products were too expensive. Yoga mat for $150? No… I’ll stick to my $5 mat, thank you.
Brisbane is so lovely. Every time I come to the South Bank and West End area, I am bewildered by the beautiful buildings and sunshine. It’s so nice to live near a river.
Another day, another yogurt snack. I love these! This time, it was a chopped pear on Greek yogurt with a crumbled peanut butter LARABAR.
Also, I just realized later this week we’ll be in March. WHAT!?
For dinner one day, I went to A Night in India (they do takeout as well, but I’m so glad I didn’t do takeout because I wouldn’t have had the DESSERT), where I devoured a bowl of palak paneer. Palak paneer is hands-down my favourite Indian dish, ever. I love it. The spices, the creamy-but-firm cheese, the rich sauce and the spinach. I could eat this every day for the rest of my life! Alongside – some saffron rice and a big garlic and cheese naan. This dinner was one of the highlights of my week.
Dessert, of course, was just as stunning. Get this, my friends: a chocolate haven cake on a sizzling pan (literally, the chocolate was sizzling). Oozing with milk chocolate from TWO layers, which became warm and gooey on the sizzling pan, and topped with dark chocolate ganache. Vanilla bean ice cream on the side. As I was eating this, I was so mindful to savour every bite, and I’m pretty sure I went to heaven?! This was unbelievable. Easily one of the top three desserts I have ever eaten. It was amazing, and words just don’t do it justice.
Finally, a huge spider web I saw (!) and my new, updated class schedule. This is the one I’ll be sticking to, from now on, because it includes lectures and tutorials.
That is… pretty much it for today, friends ❤ I hope you all have a lovely, lovely rest of the week.