A Month in Gatton

Minggu, 05 Maret 2017
Second week of class. I have advanced agronomy class today at 2 pm. The professor gave us the assignment last week, I managed to pick a topic for my essay and did some reading. I need a lot more reading because the essay would be 3000 words long and I have no idea how to fill the paper. But, the most important thing is, I started to have faith in me that I can do it. the anxiety about how I’ll mess up and everything started to fade away.
So, it’s been almost a month since I moved to Gatton. In general, I have no problem settling down. Maybe that’s because I live with fellow Indonesian so it feels easier to fit in. But I have to say a little disappointment grew in me seeing how small Gatton is. This small town has only 8000 population and you can ride a bike from one end to another end of the town in like 30 minutes. The bus schedule is the most troublesome. There are only one in like 2 or 3 hours. if you miss it, you’ll have to wait for the next bus in 3 hours because there is no other option other than driving your own car. This is the thing I regret now, I didn’t learn to drive when I was in Bukittinggi. The UQ campus is around 5-6 kilometers from the house I’m staying in Gaul Street and between Gatton and UQ campus the road is a bit dangerous to ride a bike because the minimum speed is like 80 or 100 kilometer per hour (it’s the minimum speed!!)
big big big field on the way to campus

a park in town
i always love sunset

my room, after 3 days i slept there

you can only wash your car at this car wash, not at home 

Potato at Coles. they taste so freaking soft ^^

UQ campus in Gatton is smaller than the one in Saint Lucia. Comparing with Andalas university, UQ Gatton is only like combining the faculty of Agriculture and animal husbandry together. But they have waaaaay larger farm that spread out for dozens of kilometer square. And it is nice since this UQ Gatton is especially for the Faculty of Science in Agriculture and Vet. The facility is better and nicer compared with my campus in Padang. They have better system of assignment, learning resources, better system in library (well, maybe Unand’s library has get better too since the last time I use it in 2014). There’s special room for post graduate student in library and we can use the microwave to heat the lunch we bring. You need to pack your lunch from home unless you want to spend at least 8 dollars for fish and chip in campus cafeteria. For me, 8 dollar for lunch is too expensive.
I have to consider myself lucky to get invited by mbak Nurul to stay at her house. It is only like 300 metres from bus stop and it’s close to Gatton central business area. I can reach Coles, IGA, ALDI, and a lot of other shops, supermarket, and restaurant on foot. There’s an Indian restaurant, Chinese, and some fast food chain like KFC, McDonald’s, and Subway. I have to be careful tho. Not all serves halal food. but still, this is way better than the other LPDP friends. I get the cheapest rent with the best location. Other friends get a house too far from bus stop and too far from the shopping area. the other live in the campus housing, which is nice in the term that you won’t need to spend money on bus fare and won’t be late to class, but become a burden when you need to get something fast from the grocery stores.
When we came to Saint Lucia last week, we obviously envy the beautiful building and all facilities. Everything looks bigger, there’re more option, more entertainment, more everything. That’s a place where you can actually experience the life in city of the first world country. Even I won’t say no to that type of life. But the thing is, I don’t have option. I can’t get it and I won’t get it. but at least I’ll save up more money here in Gatton, LOL. The rent in Saint Lucia is almost twice my rent here. And one thing that is also better in Gatton, the Indonesian community is close knitted and we know every Indonesian here. Everyone help each other and we mingle not only with the students but also with the former Indonesian who has become citizen or permanent resident here. It’s good to have tante Vita who provide all kind of Indonesian food for reasonable price and genuine taste. And she deliver it to our houses with no extra charge.
So, after all, the life in Gatton is nice. Almost a month here and I already feel like at home. Well, my real home is not here, it’s thousands of miles back in Bukittinggi. but I’d like to try the experience like Bodhi in the 2nd Supernova book too, who has home in all over the world, who belongs nowhere so that he could say he belongs everywhere.

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