Hello friends and family. I have started this blog to share my recent adventures in Australia with you.
July 4th I began my exciting journey to Brisbane, the capital of the state of Queensland in Australia. Before departing I spent about 6 months obtaining my Australian Registered Nurse license, work holiday visa and my 6 month full time pediatric nursing job in Australia. I chose Brisbane because it was recommended and their children’s specialty hospital is new and offers me excellent work experience. I departed Canada alone; an older couple I had met on my Africa trip were the only folks I knew in Australia and they met me at the airport. My first two weeks were spent with them, getting me established in a new city and finding a place to live; they are awesome and I am forever grateful to them!!
Brisbane is the third most populous city in Australia, with over 2 million people, and is located on the east coast of Australia. It is just 2 hours from the Gold coast where there are awesome beaches. I live within a 15 walk to work. I live in a typical “Queenslander” style house. These houses are raised off the ground to avoid damage from flooding. Unlike Canada there are very few brick houses here. The houses are not insulated like Canada with no furnaces, making 10 degree weather seem much cooler once inside. When I first moved here I was wearing two sweaters to bed to keep warm. My roommates are Kevin, a businessman from England who owns the house and Todd, an engineer from the nearby Sunshine Coast. My previous roommate and travel companion Cathi is now traveling and working in the United States.
I quickly began working at the new, state of the art Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital on an Inpatient Medical Unit. The hospital is located in the popular tourist area called Southbank, along the beautiful Brisbane River. The ward contains 24 beds with patients ranging from 0-18 years old. Common conditions we see on the unit are pneumonia, asthma exacerbations and other respiratory infections, and chronic conditions such as cystic fibrosis, uncontrolled diabetes, liver transplant complications, Crohn’s/IBD flare ups, and anything in between. The kids and parents often comment on my “accent” and are interested in hearing about my travel experiences. They are always excited to hear about the Canadian winters as many of them have never seen snow before. The nursing uniform in Australia is drastically different than what I wore back in Ottawa. Here, I trade in my comfy scrubs and running shoes for button up dress shirts, dress pants, dresses, and leather shoes. I have been extremely fortunate enough to make my own schedule at work and choose which days I want to work. This allows me to bunch all of my shifts together, allowing me to have a week off every month to travel.
When I’m not travelling on my days off, I enjoy spending time outside within the city. Brisbane is full of beautiful parks, markets, restaurants as well as trails perfect for running. My favourite run is along the Brisbane River running through the inner city. I do not ride a bicycle here as the driving on the left side is too risky for me, although bicycling is extremely popular. Summer is quickly approaching here, the opposite of Canadian weather. I have managed to avoid any magpie bird attacks( google it- it’s crazy!!). The clock here is 14 hours ahead of Ottawa making skype and facetime calls difficult to organize at times.
I hope you enjoy reading about my experience so far.
One thought on “Life in Brisbane”
thanks for sharing tracey, all new to me beautiful pictures looks like you are enjoying both work and social life take and thanks Madelyn keating