Rezma Mirakle, International Masters Student

screen-shot-2016-09-19-at-12-37-30-pmHi, my name is Rezma.

Where are you from?

I am from India

How long have you been in Brisbane for?

I arrived into Brisbane two years ago (2014).

How did you find out about QUT?

My reason for being in Brisbane is QUT. My friend best studied at QUT, and he recommended me to this amazing university.

What course are you studying?

Today I am completing my Master’s degree and must admit I am overwhelmed as I walk around the campus.

Now that you are part of the QUT campus, what do you like most about the university?

I love the fact that the campus is right in the middle of the city so everything is nearby. And even better it is within the Botanical Garden. So a green space in the middle of high rise buildings is just beautiful.

What are your expectations once you graduate?

I am going to miss QUT – the campus, coffee, the garden, library and my friends ofcourse!

What do you like most in to do in Brisbane?

I love all the opportunities the city as to offers and all the diversity around regarding activities, food, entertainment, parks and so on.

So whats next? hmm I am a brand new person now, made in QUT. I am confident with real industry knowledge and ready to fight the world:) . Ahh I meant I am prepared to take a marketing position help the myself and my employer.

Running errands and raising laughs!

I go to Queen Street Farmers market every Wednesday because the fruits and veggies I found there are fresher, and most important, cheaper!

You can find very diverse food from different nations like German bakery, Spanish paella, Turkish fudge, caramel macadamias, smoked salmon, berries, organic honey, Himalayan salt, flower bouquets, smoothies and juices, apple pies, delicious desserts, among others!

When my friend Chloe had a German sausage for lunch I regretted instantly having a late-heavy breakfast; I did not have room for it. You will understand as you see the size of it in the image.

Every week you can find different discounts and surprises at the Jan Power’s Market; according to the harvesting season. Today I found that the regular place where I do my shopping, which by the way accepts card payment (even if it is just $5.00 AUD) had randomly and without a particular reason, hanged images of fugitives from justice.

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And the cashiers were disguised as a cowboy and an Indian, like Old West Hollywood movies. Two months ago they were working with superheroes costumes. I don’t exactly understand why I was just amused by it!

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While I finished my route I found a pair of youths performing and entertaining the environment with varied melodies from which I could recognise “Hey Jude” and “Bare Necessities” from the Jungle Book.

If you are looking to quit the routine or just you need to make your errands; Wednesday market might be able to save few dollars and maybe raise a laugh.

Embrace Nature at D’Aguilar National Park

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Want to find some relaxing places near city?

D’Aguilar National Park would be your good choice!

D’Aguilar National Park locates approximately 30 km northwest of Brisbane. The southern part of the park was formerly known as Brisbane Forest Park, on the other hand, the northern part of the park is at Mount Mee. This blog will share my traveling experience in southern part.

First, the question may be “If I don’t have a car, how can I arrive there? “

NO WORRIES! The good news is that you can still go to the south area of this national park just within an hour by bus from Brisbane city!

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No matter you like to go camping, fishing, hiking, canoeing, or picnicking, this national park can satisfy everyone who may have all of these hobbies. Therefore, you can usually see many Australian family coming to this national park on weekends. Moreover, you can also see numerous native animals such as Kangaroos in this area. There are also more than 240 species of birds, 26 species of frogs, and 66 mammal species have been recorded in the park!

20160331_10403320160331_101457Worry about the cost?

The best point is that IT IS FREE.

You can enjoy the sunshine, natural atmosphere and environment here without paying any money in this national park. This is also why I love to study in Brisbane because I can enjoy lots of natural attractions for free! It is a wonderful place for you to relieve pressures and relax all day long!

If you are also an international student like me, you may feel really interested in experiencing these Aussie’s lifestyles here. For example, there are only few places where people can go canoeing in my country and I can try and learn it here. Traveling is always an appropriate way to connect with unfamiliar people and create the unforgettable memory which enrich our lives.

20160331_104214Finally, please feel free to leave your comments below and follow this QUT blog continuously! 🙂

Have fun at Gold Coast theme parks!

Gold Coast is a metropolitan region south of Brisbane on Australia’s east coast. It is known for its beaches, surfing, theme parks and breathtaking scenery. It is easily accessible from Brisbane to Gold Coast just simply through a direct train ride. The journey may take roughly 2 hours to travel, depending on your starting point at Brisbane and the end point at Gold Coast. Therefore, Gold Coast is a good place to go for day trip on the weekends when you feel like giving yourself a break from the heaps of assignments during the semester.

If you are frequent theme parks goer and fun loving person, I think VIP magic pass for Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World, Wet’n’Wild Gold Coast and Paradise Country is a very good deal for you. You can go unlimited times within the year to get unlimited fun. I fully used the VIP magic pass I bought from Groupon last year and got the unlimited fun from the three theme parks and Paradise Country.

Wet’n’Wild is a water theme park as what is named and I did get tons of fun as what is promised to be the Biggest’n’Best.

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The wavepool is really fun! You must try it when you go there!

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Good place in front of the wavepool to chill and laze for the day. If you go during summer, there are very hot spots. I think you have to be the first few in the queue before the park opens then you will only grab one of the seats. The photo was taken on one of the morning during winter, that’s why the seats were vacant!

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Both father and son have fun at Wet’n’Wild.

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The following few photos are some of the exciting rides at Wet’n’Wild.

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Warner Bros. Movie World is a popular movie world related theme park. It is Hollywood on the Gold Coast!

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One of the exciting rides at Warner Bros. Movie World.

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You also can take photo with these movie characters like the cute kids by professional photographer.

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This brings back my childhood memory at fun fair back to my country.

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One of the highlight shows which you shouldn’t miss at Warner Bros. Movie World.

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Lucky people grabbed the chance to take photo with the movie character on the street!

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I was also one of the lucky people to manage to get a selfie with the favourite movie characters too!

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The following one is my most favourite part of Warner Bros. Movie World. If you like to see the parade by movie characters too, you must not leave there earlier than the parade! The parade normally happens at 3.30pm, grab a good seat for good picture before the show starts.

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I also went to Movie World Fright nights. However it is not included inside the VIP magic pass. I would recommend you to go if you enjoy watching horror movies. Even though you are not, it is also pretty fun to go with a group of friends!

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They do not only walk on the street to scare you. You can always block them to take a cool photo too!

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Sea World is a marine mammal park, oceanarium and theme park at Gold Coast.

The penguins are just too adorable!

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One of the highlight shows ‘Fish Detectives’ which you should not miss!

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Another highlight show Affinity-Dolphin show! I am amazed by the performance. I believe you will be too!

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Shark and many other sea creatures can be seen at the oceanarium at Sea World.

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Beautiful sunset view at Sea World taken from the cable car.

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Paradise Country is an Aussie farm which can give you a taste of the life on a farm. If you adore animals, Paradise Country is strongly recommended because you can get very close to the animals there and even take a selfie with them!

If you take public transport to there, you will have to walk a long gravel path after you alight from the bus. It is probably around 20 minutes to walk there. There are animals along the side of the road so you don’t feel too boring along the way, especially if the weather is just comfortable. However I will advice you to think twice to walk there if you go there during summer.

These are the sheep I saw at the side of the road while walking from the bus station to Paradise Country.

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Entrance of Paradise Country.

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The highlight show ‘Sheep Shearing & Ram Parade’! It is an interesting show!

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I didn’t take a ride on this but I believe you can buy the ticket to take the ride and tour the farm.

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You can also feed the kangaroo! However you can still stay very close with the kangaroo even though without food haha!

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You can spot koala there! You are able to cuddle the koala and take a photo by the photographer there if you are keen!

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This is how close you can stay with the animals there!

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Some tips for you before heading there:

  • Avoid going there during Australia school (primary and secondary school) holidays if you can because you will end up spending a lot of time in queuing
  • Warner Bros. Movie World, Paradise Country and Wet ‘n’ Wild are located near to each other, basically you can walk from one to the another one. It is pretty comfy to walk during winter but I advise you to think twice whether you shall walk or not if you are going during summer
  • If you are on budget, pack your own lunch and snacks to there. Bring enough water too! A bottle of mineral water there can cost you AUD$4.50, a bottle of soft drink can cost you AUD$5.50!
  • Not all the rides that definitely require you to buy a locker to put your belongings before taking the rides. For example, you can actually carry your bags to queue for Green Lantern and Batman rides at Warner Bros. Movie World and then put your bags beside the rides when it is your turn so you can save up tiny bits of money!
  • If you plan to take all the rides and watch all the shows, it is better for you to reach before the entrance opens
  • For Warner Bros. Movie World Fright Nights, I think it is not possible to take all the rides and go into all the haunted houses if you never buy the express pass. Hence think about how much do you want to play before purchasing the ticket.

The Loneliness of the International.

As an international student, you have to be prepare to be away from your family, friends, home and so on! Everything that makes you won’t be here with you!

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If you are planning to do your full degree, I won’t lie, it will be harder! You will meet people that study with you. You might get attached and when you do so they leave!!! It is difficult to mix up with the locals and international student are most of the time in exchange! It is hard but worst it, you are going to meet so many people from so many different backgrounds.

As a post graduate student, the load of work will get intense, especially if you are trying to build a strong resume as well. You will spend extended hours in front of screen while your friends are having a drink!

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I thought I would share this feeling, as I experienced that loneliness feeling last week and then two others students came to me. They had this urge to converse with someone and expose to me this feeling they had: Loneliness.

Being aware that you are not the only one experiencing it did make me feel better; I realized that it was a normal reaction! Nothing to be worry about, it happens.

So I hope when you’ll experience it, you will remember this little article!

You are not the only one, it will all be good and soon it will all be over!!!!

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My very own Queensland travel bucket list

Many people come to Australia with their bucket lists. I followed the trend so I also created my own Queensland travel bucket list during my study journey at Brisbane ahaha!

Yet I have already ticked off a few items in my list. Hope I can gradually tick off the whole list before I graduate from QUT!

  1. Scuba diving at Great Barrier Reef. (Thanks Chiyono for the photo!)
  2. 13492930_1052827468140736_1396397365_nIdling away at Moreton Island.
  3. DSC07179 copyHop on the scenic railway at Cairns
  4. DSC09087Air ballooning at Gold Coast
  5. DSC09509 copyExplore outback Queensland
  6. Camping at Fraser Island
  7. Road tripping Queensland
  8. Rub my shoulders with the locals for the rugby battle at 1300SMILES, Townsville
  9. Lace up my boot and take a hike at Fraser Island Great Walk
  10. Sail away Whitsundays (I ticked this item off during the winter holiday!)

 

Go global with QUT: Part B – Dragon 100 united in China

The time at Hong Kong went by very fast and the next and final stop of our Dragon 100 trip was China.

We visited two completely different cities in China: Qian hai and Xi’an. Qian hai is a very modern city close to Hong Kong and the main industry of this city is its harbour industry. On the other hand, Xi’an, one of the oldest cities in China, has rich and cultrually significant history.

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Terracotta Army inside the Qin Shi Huang Mausoleum, 3rd century BC

Terracotta Army inside the Qin Shi Huang Mausoleum, 3rd century BC

One of the world heritage

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Along with the further progression of this program, I had more and more conversation with dragons from other countries. One of my favourite parts during our stay in China was the night of cultural performance. As you can pretty much tell from the name, cultural performance is all about different delegates from different countries presenting their culture to the rest of the delegates. Due to the fact that this year there were only three delegates from Australia, we formed a group altogether with UK, Canada and Netherland delegates. After some discussion, we decided to do a skit about Australians visiting UK and discovering culture differences. Besides the common difference like weather, we also presented to the audience some difference in slangs (e.g. mate, barbie, thongs, stubby, and etc.) and performed the classic ‘Hey Jude’ from Beatles. Though none of us had experience of performing, we were not nervous at all as it’s all about sharing instead of being professional.

What’s next?

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After coming back from this trip, I started to think more about how similar all the dragons are even though we live in all over the world. Also I realised actually I don’t know a lot about Chinese culture even though I’m Chinese. Knowing the history of your motherland is not only an accumulation of knowledge but also a process of discovering your root!

I hope all the dragons, no matter where you are, have the best of both world!

Botanic Garden, I love you so much!

If you ask me where is my favourite spot in Brisbane city, I’ll tell you straight away: Botanic Garden!

It’s a beautiful place to have a rest after class. It’s a lovely place to see birds and flowers. It’s also a wonderful place to do some exercise.

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I feel so blessed to have this beautiful botanic garden just outside university. Whenever I feel stressed or need somewhere quiet to think about stuff, I’ll go to the garden and sit on the grass, taking time to breath some fresh air.

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Hanging out in Botanic Garden during summer time!

 

 

 

 

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Taking a seat along riverside and enjoy this beautiful view.

There is also a running and cycling track along the riverside, you can run from South Bank all the way to Story Bridge.

I remember when I first started uni, I walked along the track almost everyday with English podcast in my ears. This feeling was a bit different compared with my experience in China.

I was from Shanghai, China, a place with very few rivers, so I always wanted to stay somewhere with beautiful river views and walk along the river everyday. Now it comes true! Although I have been here for one year, I still discover something new every time I go to the pretty botanic garden!

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Go global with QUT: Part A – Dragon 100 united in Hong Kong

How much do you know about the legends of Chinese dragons? Chinese-Dragon-Green-25-large

In Chinese culture, the interpretation of dragons can be very different from that of the western culture. Dragons have always been a symbol of power, strength and good luck in many asian cultures compared to the destructive nature and often villainized portrayal in European culture and southern American aztec culture. Today I will share a story about 100 proud powerful dragons with you.

At the beginning of this month, I was very honoured to attend the Dragon 100 Business Forum and Study Tour in both Hong Kong and mainland China on behalf of QUT. Dragon 100 is an annual conference hosted in Hong Kong. Attendees of this conference are students with Chinese ethnicity from all over the world. This year, students from over 15 countries gathered together in Hong Kong.

Students from over 15 countries gathered together and shared their business ideas

Students from over 15 countries gathered together and shared their business ideas

Although I’m originally from China, I have never been to Hong Kong. So I was very excited before departure. But at the same time, I also felt a bit anxious and nervous as this year, only three delegates were from Australia (Ada from University of Melbourne, Ivan from University of Sydney and me QUT girl ), being anxious about the unknown and questioning can I fit in the various cultural boiling pot?

The dragon committee in Hong Kong put us into different groups with a good mixture of different cultural backgrounds. In my group, we have people from Malaysia, Singapore, Mainland China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Cambodia, UK and the United States. Besides the common fact that we all have Chinese ancestry, all of us can speak Mandarin, to a greater or lesser extent.

The group I'm in

The group I’m in

We spent three days in Hong Kong altogether. Each day went by so fast and everyone started to know each other better day by day. The highlight of these three days was the pitching of our business ideas. Each of the groups sent out two representatives to share their business ideas/established business with the rest of us. I was amazed by the story of one of my team members – Kim. She was the founder of Kimature– A natural beauty product company where she combines the ideas from local farmers and local beauty therapy techniques together to provide healthy and eco-friendly products to customers. Other ideas range from Buddhism hotel to uni mentoring community.

I found the conference part very interesting due to the fact that it was focused on local entrepreneurship. We also had a bit of fun exploring local markets. Since we had Hong Kong delegates and volunteers in our team, they took us to Mong Kok and tried lots of famous local delicacies.

Cute car in MongKok local market

Cute car in MongKok local market

Team Food Hunting @ MongKok night market

Team Food Hunting @ MongKok night market

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

During the whole study tour, we always say to each other: If I want to visit another country in the future, I will have friends from every continents to visit. Dragon Foundation has alumni chapter all over the world and Chinese dragons are scattered all over the world. Besides the friendship I made, I also learnt more about Chinese history and different asian cultures which is a self-discovery process. It will always be a sweet memory in the bottom of my heart!

Stay tuned for some funny adventures in mainland China!

A session on career development

A session on career development

Multicultural BBQ and South Bank travel guide!

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How can you miss this amazing place
when you study at QUT?

“South Bank Parklands” locates in Brisbane city and it is the best area of Brisbane city for me and it was on the transformed site of Brisbane’s World Expo 88 that was officially opened to the public on 20 June 1992. Besides many recreation functions which may satisfy every generation, the biggest advantage of this park is that everything is FREE!

There are two special attractions of this park, including “The Arbour” which consists of 443 curling steel columns covered in bouganvilleas which flower throughout the year and “Streets Beach”, the man-made beach, which is 2,000 square metres of free-formed concrete surrounded by 4,000 cubic metres of sand. It is so relaxing that you can see many people here to swim, walk, ride bicycles, BBQ, picnic and enjoy the sunshine, the beautiful river, and city view here every day!

20160306_13594020160306_140638_Richtone(HDR) Moreover, according to the report of Brisbane Government, there are more than 11,000,000 tourists traveling to this park every year! In brief, it is definitely a popular spot where you have to visit when you are in Brisbane!

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20151120_204646The Wheel of Brisbane

It may not be really outstanding if you compare the height of the wheel with others in different countries. However, it may be one of the wheel where you can see the most beautiful view because it locates at the perfect spot which faces Brisbane city and river.

The Wheel of Brisbane is a super big landmark of Brisbane, therefore, there are many events held near this area. If you want to know more details, this article would be your good choice: click here

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Nepalese
Pagoda

Follow the content mentioned above, South Bank Parklands was the transformed site of Brisbane’s World Expo 88. “Nepalese Pagoda” was one of the displayed cultural buildings on that time. Moreover, it is the only international exhibit remaining on the site and also one of only three Nepalese peace pagodas in the world to be located outside of Nepal!

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Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC)

If you come to Brisbane and want to experience local or international performing arts, Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC) would be your good choice. There are many popular and famous performances held inside frequently and QPAC just locates closely to The Wheel of Brisbane. It is also an excellent opportunity to be familiar with Australian culture and communicate with native people because watching these shows is a popular recreation activity for Australians.

20160620_152829_Richtone(HDR)Queensland Maritime Museum

If you are a big fan of maritime-related histories or relics, this “Queensland Maritime Museum” built in 1971 which treasures lots of maritime art works, books, documents, photos, videos would capture your eyes. Besides it, you can also see the 100% real ships are docked at the port of this museum. The location of Queensland Maritime Museum is at the southern area of South Bank Parklands, so it is so convenient to visit here when you travel to this wonderful park!

20160417_174926When I first time came to Australia, I was so curious about these “public BBQ facilities” which are free and clean and people don’t have to apply for using them because it is difficult to see these kind of facilities in my country, Taiwan, or even Asia. BBQ is really a part of Australian’s lives! This day, I invited some friends from Taiwan, Japan, and Hong Kong to have a BBQ at South Bank Parklands. It is so awesome that you can enjoy the relaxing atmosphere and view with BBQ at the same time!

By the way, can you recognize where are we from respectively? lol
(A: 4 Japanese, 2 Taiwanese, & 2 Hong Kong friends)

20160306_140404_Richtone(HDR)If you would like to read more details or acquire more information about South Bank, my blog article may be a good choice for you: click here

Finally, please feel free to leave your comments below or follow this QUT blog continuously! 🙂