The Gold Coast

Before setting out to the Gold Coast, Andrew, my friend Emily and I went to another USC Rugby game. This one was extremely exciting because our friend Shaun actually scored a try! Unlike athletic teams back at Queens (or any college team in the US) at USC you are allowed to play until you are too old/tired to play. In saying this, for our friend to score a try was a pretty big deal. I also got some great pictures as well!

Shaun scoring a try!

a USC player after a heartfelt tackle

But once the game was over we headed to the train station. It took approximately 3/4 hours to get to the Gold Coast so we did not arrive until pretty late but it was definitely worth it. The next day we went shopping at the numerous outlet malls (American and Aussie stores) and laid out at the beautiful beach. Then we headed for our real destination, a true Aussie concert called Creamfields.

Emily and I before the concert

A little background on the concert is that it is held every year in different sections of Australia including Sydney, Perch, Brisbane, etc. DJ’s from all around come to play for it whether they are Dubstep DJs or House music DJ all are welcome. I learned a lot about the Aussie culture because almost everyone there was Australian! It was pretty crazy to see, for example:

this was your average male Aussie at the concert

Now I have not been to many American concerts but seeing Aussies in a natural place was actually extremely entertaining. Like I have said before, hardly any of the Aussies wore shoes, the guys hardly ever wore shirts and the girls wore pretty short shorts. This is all stereotypically speaking but it definitely opened my eyes to the youth of Australia. I was also with an Australian girl, Emily and she was able to pick out the Australian DJ’s. Some of the more famous artists included David Guetta, Alesso, and Dirty South. Overall it was an amazing concert and the Gold Coast was beautiful. Here are some pictures of the following night and the day after.

the city aspect

Queen's Max K. shaking hands with a street vendor

some of the group before we headed into the city

I definitely loved Gold Coast but right now I am currently packing for Sydney! From today until Sunday I will be traveling around the city and I even get to watch Macbeth front row at the Sydney Opera House!! What is even better is my mom and my brother are meeting me there! I’ll make sure to keep you posted on how my trip goes! :)

USC Rugby Games

Like most American’s when I came over to Australia I was completely oblivious to the game of rugby. Pretty much the only knowledge I had of rugby was two things: they didn’t wear pads (which I thought was not too smart because OW that would hurt) and that Matt Damon played in a movie about it (which I had yet to see). So when my friends told me they played for the schools rugby team I figured when I watched I would be fine because I had seen quite a few American football games before. How much different could it be right? Then when I went to watch a game, this is what happened..

My friend Terry going up to throw the ball in

To say the least, football and rugby have a lot less in common than I thought. Lucky for me my friend has been playing rugby his whole life, loves the game and coaches it so I learned a few differences. A) They cannot throw the ball forward B) They can kick the ball C) There is 3 different types of rugby that are all completely different in rules AND D) The only padding they wear is on their head, which is optional, and not many guys wear it. Also, unlike the US they don’t have “college teams” per say it is more club and you can keep playing until you don’t want to any more, like yesterday when I went to a game there was a man who had 3 kids! It was so weird for them to cheer on their dad while I’m cheering on my college friends. It’s actually quite scary to watch them tackle each other though, especially when you know someone.

My friend Shaun on the far right tackling the guy with the ball, it was POURING outside

 

Shaun again tackling someone, doesn't it look like it would hurt??

And they do this weird thing called a “scrum” where they gather around with their heads and shoulders together and push each other. I guess it is kind of like in football where they hit each other at the center line but it’s still quite confusing.

a scrum

Oh and I forgot to mention, the game is ongoing. They don’t even have clocks on the field! They play until the ref calls halftime, have a little bit of time off then go at it again. But worse than that, unlike football where they stop after each play, in rugby they keep going, and going and going until someone gets a “try” (touchdown in football terms) or it goes out of bounce. Trust me, I’m no rugby expert now so I’m probably wrong about half this stuff but this is what I have gathered while watching it for a few university games and a few little kids games. I actually like watching the games because they are so fast-paced but they do get hurt. At the game yesterday it was pouring outside so everyone was slipping all over the place, my friend Terry even fractured his thumb so badly that he is out for the next few weeks with a cast on his arm! I mean it has be pretty scary when like the guy below you are at the bottom of a tackle and everyone is still playing around you..

I would be pretty scared to play this game, but it’s definitely interesting to watch especially because it is not that popular in the US. Plus all the guys love it even with the bruises and the broken bones, so as nerve-wrecking as it is to watch, I’ll continue to go to the games, just from a FAR distance away.