July 8, 2008
ATLANTA – While many college students use the summer to relax by the pool, go to the beach and work as waiters and waitresses, members of the Georgia Tech Softball Team are making full use of their time. Some are traveling the world, while others are getting a head start on their careers with some unique and interesting internships or jobs. RamblinWreck.com will give you a feel for what some of these student-athletes are doing with “Summer Diaries.” In part one, rising senior All-American first baseman Whitney Haller checks in from Australia where she is studying abroad. In the next few weeks, several members of the team will give you an inside look at what they have been up to, including redshirt junior Jen Yee who is on the Canadian National Team and preparing for the Olympics in August.
Softball Summer Diaries Part I: Whitney Haller in Australia
Hey Tech fans!!!
I am having a fantastic summer so far in the land down under. Australia is an amazingly beautiful country, and I really cannot get enough of its splendor. I have now officially been here for two weeks and change, and I have already done more than most Australians ever have!!!
I started out in Darwin, which is located in the northern tip of the country. Although it is winter here, the weather felt just like home. While there, I went on a harbor cruise, shopped at many aboriginal marketplaces, and watched the sun set everyday at the beach nearby. We were even there for their Territory Day (like our Fourth of July), so we took part in fireworks and the celebration.
From Darwin, we traveled to Kakadu National Park, where we camped out for three days under the stars. I saw lots of cultural sites, weaved some bracelets with the locals, and swam in a billabong on top of a mountain. It was as picturesque as it gets. After that trip, we flew to Ayers Rock in the center of the country. We visited Uluru (the biggest monolith in the world) and Kata Tjuta (a huge mountain range) in the middle of the Outback. They were amazing sites and were just what I had pictured for the desert region here in Australia.
Now I am finally in Sydney, which may be the coolest city I have ever visited. I have seen the Opera House and the Harbor Bridge, walked in the Royal Botanical Gardens, and visited Hyde Park and St. Mary’s Cathedral already, and I have only been here for two days!!! While I am here, I already have plans to see “My Fair Lady” at the Opera House, do bus tours of Sydney and Canberra, surf at Bondi Beach, do a wine tasting tour in the famous Hunter Valley vineyards, visit the Blue Mountains, go to a rugby game, and walk on top of the Harbor Bridge. Oh yeah…I do go to class too!!
After three weeks in Sydney, our program ends back in the northern end of Australia in a city called Cairns. Here I will get to live in a nice resort for a week, go white water rafting, and even snorkel in the Great Barrier Coral Reef.
This is one of the best trips I have ever been a part of, and I can’t wait to experience all that Australia has to offer!!!
I love you all, and I can’t wait to see everyone when I return to the States, Whitney