In honor of Australia Day, I’d like to post a few of my favorite things about this country:
– Decent minimum wage even at a job with no training. ie I was able to work as a travel agent for an established, reputable company on a livable wage, plus earn commissions. I have friends in the US who are professionals in their arena and earning less than that even after years in the industry, which is sad.
– Medicare. Yup, we have private health, but before I did it was nice to know I could get my eyes checked or go to the doctor if necessary and it was free to me.
– Sports. Not just the actual sports, but the way they’re viewed and commentated. I never stop mentioning this when I watch games – AFL players always talk to the media after the match and can be constructively critical of their own team. The coaches attend a press conference afterwards and can have a laugh, talk strategy and commend (and/or condemn) the opponent. You don’t see this in NFL. In cricket (which I don’t like!) they will often have a mic on one of the players and chat to them while the game is on, from everything to the shows that are about to premier to the current game to the weather. Or, recently, about a seagull that was hit by a cricket ball.
– TV networks and their casts. There seems to be a lot of loyalty amongst those people working for specific channels. Imagine, in the USA, that someone from the cast of “Friends” would only appear on other NBC shows and that was it – you’d see them dedicated to that channel. It’s common here to see one person hosting the morning news but then making cameo appearances on late night shows on the same network, like Masterchef or something like that. Watching TV here can seem like watching a happy family that are all hanging out.
– The accent. I mean, really, it’s awesome. I never get tired of hearing it. And making fun of the Kiwi accent along with it, bro.
– The slang. Yonks. You right? Chuffed. G’day. Darl. Heaps. Crook. Good on ya. Changing names (Gary=Gazza; Kerry=Kezza; Lauren=Lazza // Jones=Jonesy; Hughes=Hughesy; Koch=Kochie // John=Johno; Thompson=Tommo; Jos=Josso)
There’s a lot I don’t like – the politics, the humidity, Surfer’s Paradise (and the Gold Coast in general), the cost of living (I still can’t get used to a 6-pack costing $18 on average!), the extreme time/distance/cost it takes to get anywhere else (aside from Fiji) meaning I don’t get to see the people I love very often, the instability of the AUD against the USD and the fact that I am currently losing 20% when I exchange money to pay what’s owed in the USA.
I miss my friends and my family, but if I had to fall in love with someone from an English-speaking-country-not-my-own, I suppose I could have done a lot worse than an Aussie 😉
Happy Australia Day, everyone! And, just for you my love:
Aussie! Aussie! Aussie! Oi! Oi! Oi!
Much love and many hugs, mates,