Aussie Aussie Aussie, OI OI OI!
Time is dwindling and with less than 24 hours until my 16 hour flight home, I find myself soaking in the last of the Australian summer, the pristine shark infested beaches, the Tim Tams, and the “G’day mates”. I0 years ago I studied abroad at University of New South Wales in Sydney. From the moment I left, I craved the supreme vibe of relaxation Australia left in my being. I also craved Tim Tams. In fact, for the past 10 years now, I’ve been shipping them all the way across the Pacific. If you’ve never heard of them, stop reading now, run to the closest World Market, and buy a package (it’s the only place I’ve found that finally sells them). Tim Tams, one of the greatest things to ever come out of Oz. They look like a rectangular biscuit (a.k.a cookie). So now that you’ve returned from world market, continue reading. Nibble off both ends, just a tiny tiny nibble, just enough that you get through the chocolate coating to the biscuit. Now grab yourself a warm cup of coffee or hot chocolate if you’re really feeling sugary, and use the Tim Tam like a straw to drink your warm beverage through it. QUICKLY toss the Tim Tam into your mouth as the whole thing begins to melt from the inside out between your fingers!!! It’s an art really. Be careful, I consumed an entire package in the first hour on arrival to this glorious biscuit heaven.
Sydney was just as I had remembered it. Busy metropolitan city, warm sun in December, packed beaches even at 2pm
on a Tuesday, semi-Euro but similar to home in so many ways. I would venture to say, that besides Canadians, Australians are more similar to Americans than any other country. Obviously they talk a little funny and wrestle crocodiles by the age of 3, but for the most part, Australia feels very much like home. Or maybe it’s just because it’s left such an imprint on my heart for so many years. Either way, Australia is truly as we read about. A land down under with more venomous deadly creatures than anywhere else on the planet. Just the other day, my friend Tytus was working in the backyard and was almost bitten by a venomous Brown snake! Yeah, it’d be nice to think that these deadly creatures are only in the wild outback (or bush as the locals like to call it), but no, they’re in the suburbs of Brisbane hanging out by your patio furniture. Oh, and you can forget about going swimming in the gorgeous beaches of Cairns, Port Douglas or Darwin… crocodiles, sharks and deadly jelly fish wait patiently for any pre-warned but rebellious tourist to wade in. They actually have man-made sand beaches and pools right next to the ocean to try to dissuade you from venturing out. Complete with Christmas Trees in December.
Luckily it seems Australia has a top-o-the-line marketing team. The images of cuddly kangaroos and koalas is enough to make you overlook the previous life threatening aspects of the place and stay awhile. We may have goat filled petting zoo’s, but theirs are overrun with wallabies, Grey and Red Kangaroos and the laziest koalas I’ve ever met. And they’re as soft as they look, although the cuddliness left a lot to be desired. My little friends below could have cared less that I was there, they just didn’t want to be woken from their naps. After my week in Sydney, and 10 days in Brisbane, it was time to make a weekend trip up to the Great Barrier Reef and Rainforest for a few days of snorkeling
and sun. (My tan from Bali had begun to fade and I have plans for arriving at Christmas dinner in the snow covered windy city a golden goddess 🙂
Check out the nails… NOT cuddly!
My trip is winding down, and as I look to “what’s next”, I’m still not sure. Therefore, for now my only plan is enjoying my last few hours in Oz; laying on the pristine beach, eating Tim Tams, and wading carefully into the ocean at Manly Beach keeping one eye on the surfers (I’m still looking for tips) and one eye for fins in the water heading my way. For some reason the Jaws song keeps playing in my head 🙂
The final days,