Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Bye bye Oz...

Ok, so we've already said goodbye to Australia, but Ania wrote a 'things I'll miss, things I won't miss' list about India, so we thought we should carry on the tradition.

Things we'll miss about Australia:
  • An obvious one to start with: the weather! It was really nice to get some sun and beach time under our belts
  • The great outdoors. We both really like the Aussies outdoor-culture (obviously helped by their good weather). Walks, beach days, picnics, BBQs, they were all fab.
  • A cold beer and a bbq being an everyday possibility
  • The Great Barrier Reef: to date, the best thing we've done on our Big Trip
  • The landscape, flora and fauna is truly incredible - there is such a variety of dramatic landscapes and creatures, I could spend hours just looking out of the car window gaping at it
  • Really good tourist information. Pretty much every town in Australia has an information point where tourists like ourselves can load up with stacks of leaflets equivalent to a small rainforest. We were never lost or short of things to do for long in Oz.
  • Kangaroos - they are actually just everywhere, really common to see them in the countryside as you drive through. One actually hopped out in front of our car in QL once. Thankfully, we saw it and slowed down!
  • Interesting, new beers. It was brilliant to try some different brews on the other side of the world.
  • Wine tasting. Our first taste of wine tasting was had in the Hunter Valley, NSW; and we had our second in the Yarra Valley, VIC. We also popped into Murdering Point winery, QL for amazing tropical wines. Luverly!
  • Last but certainly not least, our families and friends! It was great to see Ania's cousin Lucy settling into her new life in Sydney with Peter; my uncle Tony, aunt Glenys, and cousins Kate and Trystan (and Eddie the chihuahua!); and my friend Rew and his girlfriend Gemma. Until next time, guys!
Things I won't miss about Australia:

  • Weirdly, the weather! It was a pretty wet summer by Aussie standards and I'm sure most of you are aware of the craziness that is the floods in Queensland and also in Victoria. We never really knew what was going on when it came to preparing for the weather (especially in Queensland).
  • The threat of killer crocodiles, spiders, sharks, etc round every corner
  • It is soooo expensive!
  • Supermarket shopping is more of a chore than usual. They have no 'deals' and often, no prices on anything. My best example of this is seeing a roll-on deodorant 'REDUCED BY 10 CENTS!' Er... thanks? That's about 6 pence!
  • It's meat-tastic for a veggie like Ania, with the notable exception of Melbourne which has a great variety of amazing veggie food (I think Stu will miss the meat-athon, however).
  • Being woken up in the morning by a kookaburra laughing it's head off with foghorn-like decibel levels
  • The casual racism and offensive jokes/comments considered acceptable in some (but certainly not all) places.
  • The competitive streak. We found a few Aussies (mainly in Queensland) were desperate to prove to us that Australia is better than Britain. It's ok to like both! I happen to like Australia, but I also like my home.
Overall, we loved Australia. Friendly people, cold beers, BBQs, sunshine and great diving! We'll miss you, Oz!

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