Streuth, it’s been a while since I posted. This, I would like to point out, is not due to laziness, but a complete lack of any wi-fi at my Aunts (okay, admittedly its still a teensy bit related to laziness) and therefore I would now like to say a big “HELLO WORLD” or maybe more importantly a big “G’DAY OZ” as that’s where I am, and where I have been for the last two weeks!
If I’m perfectly honest, it was a bit of a shock to leave India and arrive somewhere as spacious and vast as WA. There’s only 28 million people in the whole of Australia, so suddenly everything felt very quiet and very very clean in comparison! I haven’t had a single powercut as yet and everyone here also eats steak, which admittedly, has been rather lovely. I also haven’t seen any sharks or spiders which is a cheeky bonus. I’ve been a bit of a busy bee of late trying to settle in and handling lots of boring things like tax file numbers whilst also trying to resist the temptation to gleefully run around shouting australian phrases at the top of my lungs (my favourites so far being “YA FLAMIN’ GULAR” and “STREUTH SHEILA!”) but I now have a job and it’s time to get back on the blogging again methinks. So where to begin… I’ll give you a flying update via photos and I shall begin at possibly the most Australian day ever – that is, Australia Day! Arriving when we did, we were lucky enough to arrive just in time for the celebration with Perth hosting the biggest firework display in the whole of Oz to mark the occasion. Excited wasn’t even the word! To be honest, I think Simon just wanted to eat Kangaroo, play some rugby and drink lots of beer anyway, but that was also fine by me 😉
Our Australia day began therefore, believe it or not, with beer, kangaroo steak on the barbie and a bit of rugby on the tv for good measure (they keep playing old England v Australia games here in the morning, currently Aus are on a bit of a losing streak in the early 00’s which is great for Simon’s mood). I had, in my excitement, gone to buy the biggest aussie flag I was allowed to purchase the day before – for some absurd reason Simon banned me from buying a huge cork hat and inflatable kangaroo on impractical grounds – and after eating our steaks, we made a picnic and caught the train (flag in hand all the way of course) into central Perth ready to see the air display, circus and everything else on offer down at Langley Park before that night’s skyworks display.
The celebrations themselves were really well organised and kudos to Perth for putting on so much to do. There was paintballing, camel rides, a free circus, a waterpark, airshows, lightshows, amusements, facepainting and so, so much more. One part I actually really enjoyed from both a fun and culturally informative perspective was the ‘Survival Day Perth’ area of the Park. I don’t pretend to be an expert in Australian political history but even before arriving in Oz I was aware of how understandably controversial Australia day can be for large sections of the Aboriginal community, with it having been dubbed as ‘Invasion Day’ in previous years. Now many prefer to call it ‘Survival Day’ and celebrate the literal survival of Australia’s original inhabitants and their culture. It was awesome with acts on all day and a real sense of community atmosphere, certainly not limited to just the aboriginal community either. We got a free Aussie rules football too, which always helps!
Of course, the highlight was always going to be the firework display. A full half and hour of explosions and gunpowder, accented by laser displays and set to music, it was always going to be incredible. All the fireworks reflected off the water and the sound bounced back off the towering skyscrapers behind us, creating the most wonderful sound effects. It was incredible. So much so that I really don’t think I could do it justice, so please look at some of the photos below. It was that amazing feeling of being part of something so much bigger than yourself, and as the waves of people exited the city center everyone was buzzing off the electricity the whole event produced. All in all, a great thing to experience! I look forward to what the next year will bring here!
Over and out Bruces & Sheilas,