Down Under Diaries - Ortal Oren

Dear Bruin fans,

This is Ortal Oren. We just flew into Cairns this afternoon after spending five amazing days in Sydney. The experience in Sydney was great. Even though it rained every day, it did not stop us from having fun and seeing as much of the city as we could. My favorite experience in Sydney was climbing the bridge because it was such an exhilirating feeling. Climbing that big bridge is something I've never done before, and when we reached the top, the feeling I had was something I can't really explain. The view was amazing, and the climb is definitely something I will never forget.

So after spending five days in the rain, we've finally hit some heat in Cairns. Everytime I see the sun, I'm smiling because I hate the rain! The weather is more tropical here. It reminds me of home in Israel because it's warm even in the nighttime, and all of the restaurants and shops are right on the water, like it is in Tel-Aviv.

Today we did not have a lot of activities, but we went to a really nice restaurant for dinner. They actually had on the menu crocodiles and kangaroos, and I was really scared, so I didn't try it. Maylana ordered it, and she said the kangaroo tasted like steak. Sissy ordered the crocodile, but since she couldn't really explain what it tastes like, how could she expect me to check it out? So if you guys want to try it, go ahead; I'm cool.

After dinner we got our first official dessert of the trip - ice cream, my favorite dessert! And then some of the girls decided to check out the jacuzzi at the hotel. Unfortunately, it was a little too late, and they had already turned off the hot water by the time we got up there. But some of us got in anyway.

I have traveled a lot and been to a lot of places overseas, but Australia is one place I've always wanted to visit. This is a once in a lifetime trip, especially when it's with my best friends - my teammates. This experience so far has been amazing, and I know that it's only going to get better, especially on our last day when we go to the Great Barrier Reef. I can't wait for that!

One last thing that I wanted to mention is that I saved Amy's life. we all have been taught that before crossing the street we must look to the left, then to the right, and then cross. Amy did the right thing ... but in the wrong country, because in Australia people drive on the left side of the street, opposite to what we are used to, and therefore she almost got hit by a car. Thanks to me she is alive! And now I can really feel good about myself that I actually saved someone's life. (p.s. to Amy's parents - it wasn't that dramatic)

Before I go, I just want to say a quick hello to Avi, Tova, Emily, Gary, Sharon, the little cutie YaYa, PT, and my best friends and family in Israel. I love you guys!!

To the fans reading this, thanks for supporting us, and see you back in Westwood!

Ortal Oren

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