Sasha

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Strangest thing

In The Art of Travel, 12. Strangers, Places, Sydney by Sasha1 Comment

Byron bay is the most easterly point of Australia. It is a beachside town with about 5,000 residents, and it is beautiful. In the late 1960’s, many surfers moved to Byron for the exceptional waves; by the 70’s, the town gained status as a full-on hippy oasis. Almost 50 years later, Byron possesses the same alternative charm. We arrived in …

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Indelible Ink

In The Art of Travel, 11. Second book, Places, Sydney by Sasha1 Comment

Australian Author Fiona MacGregor’s novel Indelible ink tells an offbeat but important history of Sydney. In it, almost-sixty divorcee Marie King experiences a late life rebellion phase when she develops cancer and a subsequent tattoo addiction. This begins when she drunkenly stumbles into a tattoo parlor and gets a rose tattooed on her shoulder; she proceeds to tattoo her entire …

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Art of Trouble

In The Art of Travel, 9. Troubles, Places, Sydney by SashaLeave a Comment

There were demons in the street. Specifically, there were ogoh-ogoh— demonic statues made of bamboo, cloth, and other materials. In Hindu mythology, these statues symbolize the evil spirits that Nyepi day, or day of silence, tries to drive out. The ogoh-ogoh were beautiful, their bright colors exaggerated by the grey sky. We were stuck in traffic, observing the chaos of …

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Outside of the frame

In The Art of Travel, 7. Free topic, Sydney by Sasha1 Comment

I get motion sickness when life moves quickly. I am twenty-years-old and I’m waiting in line to pay for penicillin at a pharmacy in downtown Sydney. It takes me a minute to remember how I got here—I was once seventeen and set on state school. Now, my ear hurts and I’m 10,000 miles away from any Big Ten. I swallow …

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On acrophobia

In The Art of Travel, 5. The Spirit of Place, Sydney by Sasha1 Comment

Acrophobia, the fear of heights, is considered a successful evolutionary adaptation by many scientists—heights are dangerous. Though height-induced anxieties range from butterflies to panic attacks, humans are born with an innate cautiousness towards heights. These anxieties are related to the basophobia, the fear of falling. In Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 film ‘Vertigo,’ protagonist John “Scottie” Ferguson has developed severe acrophobia because …

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When coal burns

In The Art of Travel, 4. Politics, Sydney by Sasha3 Comments

North of the Galilee Basin in Central Queensland lies the site of Adani, a proposed coal mine. A $16.5 billion investment, the mine would produce 60 million tonnes of coal per year and rank as one of the largest coal mines in the world. Adani Group, the entity putting the project in motion, claims that the mine will be economically …