As some of you know, I went to a school camp. It was an amazing experience so I wanted to share what I did with you guys. I went to Canberra, the capital city of Australia. I live in Australia, yes, but not in Canberra. But to be honest, Canberra is way prettier than the city I live in. The following pictures aren't mine, 'kay?
Frankly, we had to go on a bus to get to Canberra. Smart. So in total, it took us about eight hours to arrive in Canberra. On the way to Canberra, I wrote a little more on my story, The Significance of One. I slept a for less than half an hour. We listened to music that the others' brought. On the way, I saw many rainbows. I saw two rainbows at the same time. It was so close! It felt like I could actually reach for it and grab it. It was so amazing.
Later on, we arrived at the motel. It was Sundown Motel. It was actually very clean. The teachers gave us instructions and we left for our cabins. It was so clean and awesome there! There were five beds. The beds were a bit cheap though. There were four bunks and a double bed inside another room. But there were only four of us in a cabin. We decided that the two year 5's will sleep in the double bed together while the two year 6's will sleep on the bunks alone. I slept at the bottom of a bunk on the right side. There was a bathroom in each cabin with a heater and an conditioner in each room. There was a TV but the teachers took out the cables and turned off the electricity. We got ready to eat dinner! We did make rules. We weren't allowed to use other's toiletries and we had to set up who will take a shower in the morning and in the evening. Everyone took a shower in the morning so I took it in the evening, the time when I always take a shower. I get all the hot water! Too bad that we don't get seconds for dinner. Dinner was like delicious but I forgot what we ate. We slept earlier than everyone else so we got a good night's sleep.
We woke up early and got ready to go. We ate breakfast. I eat a lot even though I'm not that fat. I got seconds. My breakfast consisted of two sausages and two toast. My Mum even said that I looked skinnier after my trip back. Seriously, I ate a lot for breakfast. I spread Vegemite and butter onto my toast. Delicious!
We went around the embassies in Canberra. There wasn't one for Vietnam but at least there was one for China, the country where I also come from. The boys were so funny but mean. They wanted the bus to crash with the bridge we go under. The bridge was like 2.2 meters or somewhere near that. Thats just not smart at all. If the bus does crush, they will be the one who will be inflicted damage the most since they were sitting at the front on the top of the double decker. These boys are just the smartest, aren't they?
We went into Parliament House. We had a little snack and went around. I know most of you don't live in Australia so you might not even know about our Parliament House. It really was a big place. At that time, we also had the elections where you might not know too. Since Julia Gillard (Labor) and Tony Abbot(Liberal) votes had close scores, we couldn't count it. Our system in Australia is different. We don't just count to see whose votes are higher and then make them Government. In Australia, they have to receive more than half of the votes to be able to become Government. So, if the votes were Julia Gilard: 10 and Tony Abbot: 5, then Julia Gillard will be made Government but if the votes were to be Julia Gillard: 7 and Tony Abbot: 5, then that will take on another course. Each party had to get 76 seats from all the members of parliament which means the people you voted for. In my case, my parents would have voted for Nicola Roxon to represent them. She will then chose her seat, which is Government with the Opposition as Liberal. The two parties have to have 76 seats to finally be Government.
On that exact day, they were going to announce who was Government because the Greens or the Independents, I don't know who, announced which side they were going to chose. Unfortunately, we weren't there since we had to leave earlier.
We got one of those education programs and we were taught how to pass a bill. Which means how to make a bill(not a law yet) and turn it into a law. We went into this room that wasn't the House of Representatives nor the Senate but the seats were arranged similarly. I went in and just chose a seat but then I realised the seat was the Liberal Seat so I immediately changed and moved across the room to Labor. We tried to pass a law(fake) about not letting animals be in the Circus. Of course, as the Opposition, they had to disagree. But this was simple because we did role play and there were scripts for us. I think we were in the House of Representatives first. We went through all procedures but some of the Government members betrayed us. But we won anyway! But the bill still hasn't become a law yet. The program conductor gave Opposition more members this time so making the bill a law isn't that easy now. They had more members than us now. Another one of our members betrayed us. But the conductor said that you couldn't go to Opposition if you were in Government. There was an alternative though. Usually, when there it is time to pass a law, all the members will be called. If you come late then you are not allowed to enter. You have four minutes. If you are late, then your vote will no longer be considered. When the parties were close to the number needed, the Independents and the Greens had to choose. They all chose us so we won again! Another victory!
We had a tour of the Parliament House. We went to visit the House of Representatives and the Senate. It was amazing and it was giant! It was so cool! Only if there was some action and debating there. That would just be so awesome! We learnt that the longest serving Government was Robert Menzies. There was another Government that disappeared in the water and we never found him again.
We went to the National Capital Exhibition next. The speaking model they showed us was amazing and we learnt a lot. Canberra was a planned city. The planner was Walter Burley Griffin and Lake Burley Griffin was named after him. His partner, his wife, was the drawer of the plan. Lake Burley Griffin is man made but it does look wonderful.
We learnt a bit about the High Court on the visit. It was huge. There was suppose to be seven judges in a High Court. The judges were allowed to change anything they want. But of course, with the approval of all judges. They say that you have to wait for at least a couple of months before your everything decided which is going to take a long time. I might have to go there one day.
We went to visit National Gallery of Australia. All the paintings were wonderful. We went to see most of the Australian artist ones. Some of them, I didn't like. My favourite one was an Aboriginal one. It was made out of natural materials. The paint, the everything. It left with me with a deep memory. In the gallery, you had to carry a stool to sit on. It was bothering to do but at least you can sit while the tour guide talks and not having to stand there.
The Government House was beautiful! It was amazing! Just so you know, Government House is Australia's Governor General's house. It was so big and prestigious. We met Lieutenant Philip. He told us about the Governor General. He said he even met Prince Charles! Thats just amazing! Then, we had another tour guide. He showed us around the dining table where the people who the Governor General invites eat with her. The plates are made of 10 or even more carat gold. I don't remember. We went around the place. But I went out with a really bad mood. The teachers didn't let us bring digital cameras. I really wanted Mum to see what I saw. You take pictures because you want the person that looks at your work to see what you see, feel what you feel.
The Royal Australian Mint was kind of boring. It was self guided, that's why. The part that kept me amused for a little while were the weird and faulty coins and the history of the Royal Australian Mint. It allows you to look down and view what the people do to make coins. It's nothing at all. It's even like lunch break that time. Only a few people were there and they did basically nothing at all. We went to the gift shop down there and all the stuff were expensive! For those of you who haven't gone to the Royal Australian Mint, you would not believe this. For three dollars, you can mint your own new one dollar coin. The catch; you don't really mint your own one dollar coin. All you do is, insert three dollars, press and button and viola, a new one dollar coin will come out. How cheap is that? I was nearly tempted to make one but I didn't. It's a waste of money for a person who does not collect coins. Besides, I can easily ask my Mum to bring home a new 2010 one dollar coin home since she works as a cashier. My Mum can just ask her boss. The Royal Australian Mint Gift Shop are cheapskates.
The National Portrait Gallery was fun! The portraits were amazing. Here, you still have to use stools but these stools are much more easier to carry as they hang on your shoulder like a hand bag though it does hurt sometimes. There is this portrait of someone that I didn't really like. I'm not saying it's bad. The painter is really good but just the person in there isn't my ideal kind of thing. It actually scared my off a bit. Afterwards, we were supplied pencils and paper to draw what we had to do. It was really fun to do so. You only got three minutes to draw it and then move onto another seat to draw the same sculpture but at a different angle. But thing is, we had to draw another picture and I did horrible. It looks ugly.
The last place we went that day was the National Museum of Australia was quite fun but not that fun. Basically, all we did was split into groups of five and go around with a camera and one person only gets one picture. They then have to write about the picture. There are placards that have information on it and you can refer to that. I chose to do about Nguyen Tam Minh. He created the Dan Tre, which means 'bamboo guitar' in English. Maybe I chose him because he was Vietnamese. The Dan Tre is awesome! It can play almost any song you wish. Of course, it's manual so you must know how to play it yourself. It doesn't play for you. I got to learn a bit about the first car in Australia. It was a Holden. It was test driven for two years before they put it on the market. It was made to suit Australian roads. In the olden days, of course.
Today was the last day at Canberra. Time sure flied past fast, doesn't it? I think so too. I kind of missed Canberra and was reluctant to part with it but still, I miss my Mum more. I would rather be home actually.
The first place we went to was Questacon. It was really fun. Basically, Questacon was like Science Works. I'm not sure if you guys have heard of it yet. It was really awesome but unfortunately, I didn't get to go on to the Free Fall. I'll just have to some day. The Circus place was the funnest. It had everything of Circus in there. Well, not literally but it was more than you could ask for. There's this thing where you put your head underneath and there will be a slit to cut your throat. Once again, not really. It's just sound effects. It tests your level of bravery. Seriously, if you just stood there to watch for the first time, you will get a fright. There was a slash sound and it totally frightened me. Even if I wasn't the person under the thing. It says that it and the Free Fall tests your bravery but to be honest, I think the Free Fall is fun, not scary. I didn't buy anything there since I wanted to buy something that I would use, that is in my budget and something that I can only find in Canberra but it can be something found in other countries though. The things they sell were just experimental things. Really, you can buy it just anywhere and maybe that anywhere would be cheaper. There was this key chain that said Questacon but it didn't fall into my conditions. I wouldn't use it at all. What a waste of money if I were to buy it. I decided I would buy something at the War Memorial.
The War Memorial was a must go place. It was calm and nice. It brought the memories and the feelings of soldiers to it's visitors. It showed us what it would be like during that time. How devastating. But also, how happiness was found deep down in the devastation. Many soldiers sacrificed their lives for their country, Australia, and some came home but most didn't. Their parents must have cried a stream for those who didn't return. A normal, peaceful and happy family was ruined because of war. They could have been living happily but no, they chose to sacrifice for their country. Brave soldiers, young hearts. That time must have been a time where God tested bravery of each and every person. That time though, it cost many young souls. Thats why, we have a the War Memorial, to remember them and thank them for what we have today.
At the War Memorial, I bought, finally, a gold digger's hat key chain. I wanted to buy at least something for Mum. That key chain, for now, will be in my possession until Christmas. It's a Christmas present for Mum I bought all they way from Canberra. I bought a poppy but I didn't have time to place it on the names on the wall. I wanted to place it on the name of the person that went to war and died in it from my family. He was my grandfather's older brother. I want to thank him. If not for him and many other Vietnamese soldiers, Vietnam may not be what it is now. I am proud to have someone in my family that went to war, put his life on line for Vietnam but I'm also sad that he had to die in it.
The last activity of the day is at the Australian Institute of Sport. We got free a lanyard and a pen! The only place that gave us something free out of the many places we visited!
There was a place where there were simulators. It was called a Sportex. I came in and the first thing I did was try and shoot a ball in the basketball hoop. I tried twice and got it in. I moved on to the Soccer place. There was a screen and you had to kick the ball though you can't see it. It uses a sensor to know that you kicked and whether you would get a goal or not. It was fun! I went to try how high I could jump. I jumped and it showed me I could jump 4.00 meters or something. I'm not sure. Though, I don't think it's true. Or maybe it's just me. I don't remember so I just took out what I remembered. Then there was this bicycle thing. It was so tiring and I couldn't even do one lap. I'm so weak. We were taken to a Gym where there were some gymnastics training for the 2010 Commonwealth Games. There were junior boys there too. They were amazing. But there was one that was showing off. He just stood in the middle of no where and did a back flip. It was funny because the girls said that he was showing off. We went to a Volley Ball court. The games there were awesome. I was so attached to it. Too bad there were nets that blocked our perfect view. Then we went to this place. I don't remember what it's called but it's like a gym. There were people training. It was seriously boring in there. Last of all, they showed us a swimming area and it was huge. We watched a three minute documentation. It was interesting but I've forgotten all the contents. The swimming place was surprisingly warm. Usually at swimming pools, it would be so cold that you would even hesitate to even put your toe in. This is different. You feel like you just want to jump and go for a swim. Though it was quite late for them to be training. It only was the beginning of Spring so the sun went down at five something. It was really dark.
It was time to go so we said byes' and thank yous'. One of our tour guides, who was an athlete too, told us that we were lucky to be able to see so many action. Usually, when schools come, they would see an empty hall or gym. I don't know whether to say we're lucky or not. There was like two more schools there too.
We returned and I tried to find where our cabin was. Me and my cabin mate kept searching and we were drenched in the soft rain. Usually, the bus was at the other end of our cabin but this time, it was really close, leading us to be confused. But finally, we arrived back to our cabin.
Last day of camp. I was kind of reluctant to go but I came with tears at the rim of my eyes from missing Mum. I woke up at five seventeen from the sounds of talking from the people in my cabin. I pushed myself to wake up and finally made myself get ready. The whole cabin was ready before six.
After eating, we got on the bus to prepare for our nine hour trip back. I decided to sit on the bottom since the only seat available on the top of the double decker is the seat close to the back. I've never had motion sickness but I am afraid that I might vomit because of sitting too far back. Also, Mum told me to sit at the front because it was better.
Going through many climates and hours, we finally reached school. We were back an hour earlier so I had to wait for my Mum to pick me up at five, as the teachers told us that we would be back at school at five. I walked up to the office, asking them to call my Mum. After they did, I was bored of waiting so I went outside and a few of my class mates were playing with a foot ball. Being a person that likes to play sport, I rushed down and asked if I could play. We were playing Markers Up. A teacher of the other class came to join us ans kicked the ball for us to catch because we were such bad kickers. A couple of more people joined and played. It was really fun until a boy come and said the ball belonged to him. Our fun ended but we had an alternative! One of use had a stress ball and the fun started once again! It was really funny as I dived for the ball whenever it came in front of me. I just spread my arms out straight and ran for the ball but, amazingly, I caught it nearly every time. There was this guy that was playing too and he stood behind me. The ball just got thrown and I put my hand up and caught it. I was off guard a bit but managed to capture it. It was really fun! We played for about an hour until our parents came to pick us up. I came home with a smile in my face. What a fun day! I caught the ball a couple of times! I was so happy!
That's the end of my five day trip to Canberra! Hope you enjoyed it!