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My three favourite things are friends, my family and freedom—I’m not good at being told what to do and I’m happiest when I know that I can just go and do something for myself and that I can make that choice.

I’m actually in Canberra because my boyfriend is in the Navy. That makes me feel silly sometimes because I’ve sort of uprooted my life for a guy. But even though I moved here for a guy, the move was huge for me. I lived at home—and in Melbourne—until I moved here and so I moved from being with my parents to out by myself, into a new city. I think the move for me was about being independent. That’s why I’m here, and I’m happy with it.

To me, being a women is about trying to be more nurturing. We’ve all got the feminine in us, but I feel like I’m leaning a lot towards the feminine and nurturing. I really want to be a mum, so that’s a huge part of it. I think being a woman is to be gentle and to bring things down a bit because a lot of the time the masculine is really high energy. I think we need to balance that out.

I like that there’s ANU and there’s UC, so there’s a lot of other smart women that you get to meet through the day and talk to. And there are people like you walking around! That’s really bringing women’s issues to the forefront.

The hardest thing about being a woman in Canberra is having Tony Abbott, the Minister for Women, so close and not being able to do anything about it! I think politics is talked about a lot more here than it was in Melbourne. I could sort of separate myself from it a bit more and I could shut it out and pretend it wasn’t happening.

I have found maintaining my health and wellbeing in Canberra really hard—I usually do yoga at home and I found it hard to find a good yoga studio here with flexible classes. I think that might be the demand of a lot of public service people only available at certain times. The people who are not in the public service are pretty much uni students so they can go their uni gym and do those classes. Wellbeing has generally been pretty good here. There’s a lot of parks, and the lake, I walk around the lake a lot. The food is getting better, and I’m getting more excited about that, like Thrive, I love Thrive!

I’m probably missing Melbourne a bit, so on my perfect day in Canberra I’d like something that was a good community event. I really liked the Multicultural Festival, I really love the busyness of it and that everything is just thrown in together, and that you don’t have to search out individual things. I’ve found that since I’ve moved here if I want to have an outing I really have to plan it. Whereas in Melbourne if you felt like going to something you’d just walk down the street and there’d be something for you to do. So my perfect day in Canberra is a busy day, where there is stuff happening around that I can stumble across without having to organise things.

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Image created by Josey Carnovale as part of Canberra’s You Are Here festival.