Here are three fun facts about Australia:
- Australia is home to 21 of the world’s 25 most venomous snakes;
- The Great Barrier Reef is the planet’s largest living structure;
- Aussies drink around 1.7 billion litres of beer per year, that’s about 680 bottles of beer for each adult.
Australians are also obsessed with the beach and leaving work at 4pm on a Friday to catch-up with mates at your local bar/pub. That’s just how we are and why the hell not? Have you seen how beautiful our beaches are? They’re so beautiful that we’re even willing to risk getting stung by some of the world’s most dangerous jellyfishes for a good surf.
Just like the 4th of July is big in the States, 26th of January a.k.a ‘Australia Day’ is a huge deal around here. It’s one of the few days of the year (except for Melbourne Cup) where getting drunk off your face before 12pm and handling a barbecue is acceptable. Despite the multiple dangerous associated with a drunk person near a grill, flipping sausages.
However as someone who’s grown up in three different countries, this holiday results in a bit on internal angst as it leads to the questioning of one’s identity. So how does an individual with an identity crisis and lack of navigation skills celebrate this special day?
- Go swimming at your local pool because every Aussie on the face of this planet will be at the closest beach on Australia Day. We just naturally tend to gravitate towards beaches like the rats from the Pied Piper.
- Take up this opportunity to hit up your local amusement park. If you live in Sydney, hit up Luna Park and enjoy the lack of queues on your favorite rides because I guarantee there won’t be the usual pushing and shoving that comes with amusement parks on that day. You wanna know why? You guessed it, because every true blue will be at the beach.
- Use this day to hit up your local bookstore and indulge in a little TLC (tender love and care) as most locals will be out in the sun trying to look like a leather bag.
- Go for a hike. In Australia we have a lot of nice secluded beaches/waterfalls that are located in national parks. The downside? In most instances you have to hike/walk up to 5 kms to get to these hidden gems. But the perks are once you get there you’ll be able to cool off with a nice swim. I have a few mates whose sense of direction is absolutely tragic and probably couldn’t identify a location, even if it was printed out on a sign in front of them. As a result you will rarely find a bunch of drunk Aussies trying to navigate their way through the bushes after pumping through a six-pack.
- Spend this public holiday researching why Australians love Vegemite so much. It’s one of our ‘staple’ food items ruining our reputation both nation wide and internationally. I made more enemies than friends when I introduced this spread to my American friends on exchange at California State University, Sacramento (CSUS).
- Go around pretending to be a stuck up prick and getting Australians to pronounce words, the way the queen intended them to be said. Australians are laid back in all aspects including our spelling. Not only do we shorten our words (wherever possible) but we also have a confusing accent to keep things interesting. On this iconic day, go around to your supermarket and play the role of the word police. We already have so many laws and policemen across the state that people won’t even react to you.
Also our gun laws mean chances of you getting shot are slim to none. All jokes aside as someone who considers herself Indian/Australian I celebrate both nationalities by eating a Samosa (type of savory Indian cuisine) and sipping a VB (typical bogan Aussie beer).