First Impressions

Rossella Paba from Italy. Studying a PhD in Anthropology and Bioarchaeology at JCU (James Cook University), Townsville Campus

I come from a small island in the Mediterranean Sea called Sardinia, in Italy. After two days and four flights through three different countries, I got to Townsville. I was very tired, and the trip were very challenging: delays, lost luggage, more delays… but I stayed positive and excited. Finally, I made it, I arrived after 2 long years of waiting in beautiful Queensland. Suddenly, I was welcome by a crystal-clear sky, with amazing plants, and birds, oh, lots of birds, and even if now, I am aware of their fling about bins, Ibises are still my favourite. In my island, we have Flamingos that like small pink/black arrows fly every day at sunrise and sunset. Ibises are the same, and they give me a sense of home.

Home. Townsville resembles my hometown: heat, beach, very punctual birds, but the most important thing has always been the people. Since arrived, everyone is always smiling, making me feel comfortable and giving me a glimpse of home. More than that, the people showed kindness and inclusivity and they started to surprise me day by day. Townsville’s community is quite kind and active. In less than three months, I was able to find a wonderful group who practice acro yoga once a week giving me a chance to make new friends and find my passions here as well. Then, I joined the paddling group that is manage by a wonderful person who lend all the useful gears allowing everybody to enjoy the beauty of the river, but not happy about the already amazing gesture, after a quite calm and easy paddling, there is a canoe polo session. So much fun. Now, I joined a painting class that once a month gather to improve drawing skills and all the time, I end surrounded by beautiful souls, smiling, happy, and full of light. Light happens to be more than an analogy because the most wonderful day has been the one in which all this people gathered to light up the night with an acrobatic fire session.

The people are what make a place. I can say that here, in Townsville, the community is what make this city a very good place to live.

October 2022