It has been just over a year since I came to Brisbane and started my PhD in the Mayfield Lab at the University of Queensland. I had just come from a cold winter in Wyoming/Colorado (in fact, there was a snow storm the day I left Denver) into the middle of summer in Brisbane (HOT humid sunny days). I had also come from Laramie, Wyoming which has a population of about 30,000 to Brisbane which sits at about 2.3 million. Quite a change of pace!
In the past year I have gotten the chance to explore the culture of Brisbane. I have explored the arts in GOMA (Gallery of Modern Arts) and the Queensland Art Gallery.
I also caught a couple of shows at the Queensland Performing Arts Center (QPAC) including Les Miserables and Welcome to Night Vale. I am already planning to visit again soon to see My Fair Lady in April 2017.
What I especially love about QPAC is that they have a wall of information about the history of the currently featured show (see below for part of the isntallation for Les Mis).
The Queensland Museum is also a great place to visit. It has displays on cultural and natural history of Queensland.
I have also explored nearby attractions including Mt. Coot-tha and the Botanic Gardens. Being sans-car, it is hard for me to get around and explore more of Brisbane. However, this year I intend to keep taking mini-adventures within and surrounding the city so that I can experience as much of Australia as I can!
There are events in Brisbane all year. I attended the premiere World Science Festival in Brisbane where there was a variety of events and activities of all ages. I attended a viewing of The Martian with a panel that included Andy Thomas (an Australian astronaut) and Pam Conrad (an astrobiologist from NASA). I am planning to attend the festival again this year (2017) and go the another viewing & panel discussion, this time for the film Hidden Figures.
I am astounded by diversity of urban and suburban Brisbane (albeit a heavily exotic-influenced diversity). I commonly see kookaburras and cockatoos (which are very different to the common birds of Wyoming). I have also spotted possoms and echidnas in the suburbs of Brisbane. The flora here is even more interesting that the fauna (from my point of view because of my addiction to botany)!