Friday, September 30, 2011
So, I'm working for the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Sydney at the moment as an acting program manager for a research grant on aging (don’t ask). I thought it might be a gig that would land me another contract, but looks like my visa duration is going to be an issue. It expires within less than a year, and they are looking for someone who can make a longer commitment. No bother, really, it's two and half days a week and looks like they will keep me on until they find someone they want to hire, which will be sometime within the next 3 or 4 weeks. The Director is American— he's been here since the 70s, so despite his accent he's kind of native. Well, he's been here long enough to know the culture inside and out. We joked about Americans and how we wear our emotions on our chests. You can strike up a conversation with any American and within the first 3 minutes you would not be shocked to learn from your conversationalist that his brother's wife used to be a hooker but got a job working at FOX NEWS and was recently fired for doing cocaine in the bathroom in between news sets, and now, she’s in rehab doing charity work for a local Baptist church in lieu of jail time. Australians are the opposite, you have to tease things out of them and it can take forever to learn anything good and juicy, but that’s another story. The current work gig is in a section of Sydney called Lidcombe, which takes me about 40 minutes to an hour one way, train then bus. It’s been many years since I’ve had a commute that far from where I live (and as commutes go, I know it could be worse). In the beginning, it was sort of an adventure. Now I’m like, if had to do this every day I would go insane. The good thing is that while most people are traveling into the city for their work, I’m going in the opposite direction. There’s a huge cemetery called Rockwood Necropolis that's close by. I can’t decide if it’s funny or creepy that the Faculty of Health Sciences is across the street from heaps of dead people.