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Same old is the good old

In The Art of Travel Spring 2018, Sydney, 13. Free topic, Places by Sasha3 Comments

Australian coffee is strange. At home, I’m used to drip coffees and cold brew, but here, espresso drinks dominate. The coffees are also tiny—an Australian large is barely an American small. Still, there’s something about the strength of Australian coffee that I love: it’s bold, bodied, and distinctive. I get my coffee from the same cafe every morning. It’s on …

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Indelible Ink

In The Art of Travel Spring 2018, 11. Second book, Sydney, Places 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 Spring 2018, 9. Troubles, Sydney, Places 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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Frostbite dreaming “In A Sunburned Country”

In The Art of Travel Spring 2018, 6. First Book, Sydney by Sasha1 Comment

As a child, I was captivated by Antarctica. No one lives in Antarctica—It is treacherous, it tries to kill you. Still, I longed for the otherworldly stillness, the lack of anything human, the extreme isolation. I promised myself I would ski the 1360 km between McMurdo Station and the South Pole someday. Instead, I’ve ended up in Australia, a country …

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On acrophobia

In The Art of Travel Spring 2018, 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 4. Politics, The Art of Travel Spring 2018, 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 …