How Hobbies Change
The world is diverse, and every country is home to different people, who do different things, in different conditions, at different times. I am certainly not from Jamestown, New York, and I have never shot a deer nor been to a rodeo. But, have you ever been driving on a remote beach, with no cell service or people within 50 miles? To some this could seem freaky or just not fun, but believe me it is one of the greatest things a human being can do, and is one of the hobbies I’ll be telling you about and comparing, from Australia, to The United States.
I’ll start with a bit of context. I’m nineteen years old from Sydney, Australia. I had lived in Perth, Western Australia before coming to Jamestown, NY. I have played sports my whole life and practically grew up in the ocean. I’d say I’ve had a super broad range of hobbies from childhood to now, which leads me to my first; Surfing. I first stood up on a surfboard when I was about eleven, and that one time was enough to hook me for life. Surfing is something that will never truly leave your spirit, the art of gliding across a raw and wild mother nature is a feeling that’s almost indescribable, you truly do feel like you’re one with mother nature. I have been on surf trips all around Australia, and was lucky enough to travel to Bali, Indonesia with my best friends to surf too. Coming to Jamestown was a hard choice, and the ocean played a huge role in it because of surfing. I knew I’d be sacrificing it, but I know it’s not going anywhere. In the meantime, I’ve discovered an alternative, snowboarding. It will never be the same as surfing, but snowboarding gives you a whole new type of rush that will certainly keep me going until i see waves again. I’ve been a few times now, and picked it up within about thirty seconds. It’s a similar concept, but in my opinion Snowboarding doesn’t have as much freedom. But they both have their pros and cons. I wish I could go every day, that adrenaline rush is something I crave.
Onto the next, getaways. Australia is a huge country, about the same size as the United States, but with 303 million less people. This makes for a lot of open spaces, but to be fair, if you head far enough inland anywhere in the country, all you’re going to hit is desert. However, there’s still an insane amount of coastline in Australia that is relatively untouched, and one of my favorite things to do, was explore those remote places. Any public holiday, long weekend, or just about any free period of a few days, you’ll find me either alone, or with my best mates traveling up or down the coast searching for waves or a beach to ourselves. We travel as far as 12 hours North or South, rarely further as we all had things to do during our senior year, we would just search. There really is something special about sitting in the middle of nowhere, waves crashing in the background, no service or people within 50 miles, and just looking up at the stars (which by the way are immensely more visible when there’s no light pollution in sight). Again, that natural beauty is one of those things that’s virtually impossible to describe. Now in comparison to where i’m based now, There is definitely still beauty to be found. Throughout the Soccer season we travelled fair distances with the team and saw a variety of different places all with unique characteristics. I think road tripping in the US is better for finding more artificial beauty. For example, over thanksgiving I was lucky enough to go on a road trip 8 hours away to the east coast, New York City. It’s funny, watching hundreds and hundreds of movies your whole life, seeing time square and the city, then all of a sudden you’re standing right there in the middle, finding yourself doing 360’s in awe. It is truly a surreal experience.
So there you go, my two favorite things to do in Australia, and how they compared to the US of A, it is crazy how diverse my past and present locations are, and how my hobbies have changed since switching across the world.
About this post’s author
HI! I’m Axel Richardson, a freshman international student on the Men’s Soccer team at JCC. I moved to Jamestown from Perth, Australia and love absolutely anything that involves the outdoors. My hair may be a little wild but I don’t bite, so feel free to say hi to me if you see me around campus!