The Real Downunder
I’ll be the first to admit that when it comes to writing a blog – I simply know nothing. But before you stop reading there, let me tell you what I do know a bit about, a magical place called ‘down under’. That’s right, I’m talking about Australia! As a quick intro, my name is Taylor (fondly called Tay-Tay by many) and I’m a uni (college) student living in Sydney. I know all you international friends out there believe that G’day is our favourite phrase, we ride Kangaroos to school and love a good shrimp on the barbie, but I’m here to set the record straight! So let’s bust some myths and get to know each other!
1. We do speak English, just love our slang.
Hopefully you have all heard of the term bogan? For those of you unaware, it is the endearing way us Aussies describe our accent that you seem to find so attractive. The more ‘Aussie’ you sound, the more bogan you are. And here in lies the confusion about how we talk. In being bogan, we like to shorten EVERYTHING. Check out this short video, which I think does a great job in highlighting some of the classic slang we are keen on.
A crucial difference not included but important not to confuse: you say flip flops and we say thongs. And yes for those of you wondering, we do have the underwear version too, it’s just a singular thong. Having gone to the states on exchange last year (Tar Heel for life!) I know I freaked my roomie out on the first day when we were heading out and I had to grab my thongs first. All about the context people!
2. We all can’t surf.
I LOVE THE BEACH! I’m from a place just out of the Sydney city called the Northern Beaches, and we love our coast line of golden sands and crystal waters. But when summer comes round, you’ll find me getting dumped by waves, eating sand (not ideal) and getting awkward tan lines. Not quite the image you all anticipated but for a lot of us, there is more to summer than balancing on some fibreglass. That said, I do enjoy checking out the local surfers on occasion (always). I can’t wait to tell you more about Aussie beach life when summer rolls round!!
Beach Memorial on ANZAC day
3. Ugg Australia is not our life.
Trust me, I love my uggs, I’m wearing them right now! But most of us love some good cheap ones from Target. We wear them literally everywhere since they are the most comfy shoe out there! But I am not about to be ripped off for the sake of a logo.
4. We don’t even say Shrimp.
‘Awww mate, chuck another shrimp on the barbie!’ We love our barbeques sure, you got me there. But shrimp? We call them prawns! And if we are going to throw anything on the barbie, it’s going to be a snag (sausage) or a good piece of steak.
5. No, you won’t die from (insert supposed dangerous wildlife here) attacking you.
We love that you think we are so tough (we kinda are)! But I’m sure if we survive here comfortably, so will you when you come visit. Sure we have deadly jellyfish, but no one is going to go swimming at those beaches! And yes there are quite a few spiders and snakes that do not make for good friends, but they don’t exactly have their own room in the house! All the scary wildlife great and small are for the most part, out in the wildlife or in the zoo. For us in the city and surrounding suburbs, there’s only the odd snake in the backyard to worry about.
6. Yes Vegemite does taste good.
You all try it with a spoon – madness!! There is an art – yes an art, to eating vegemite. It’s all about the perfectly cooked toast and the all-important butter to vegemite ratio. Please don’t think it is going to be like Nutella, it’s so salty! But that just makes it the perfect hangover cure for an uneasy stomach. Not game, just trust me!
Brekkie – aka me eating the props
Aaaand that’s the basic answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we get when we embark on our own travels. But don’t let me deter you from coming here in the slightest! Upon request, we will fit the stereotype and call you ‘Sheila’ whilst back flipping on a surfboard with a koala. Australia will never disappoint, and I’ll prove it to yah!
Shout out to the Verbal Gold Blog team for bringing me into the fam! My posts will be contradicting at times (forever torn between my desire to have abs and my love for chocolate) but I’m hoping you love them all the same – and give it all a go with me! Feel free to comment below and let me know if you want me to tackle something in particular, or give you even more reasons to come visit ‘straya. I am super keen to give you all some insight to my life and the beautiful beaches I call home.
Sending lots of Kangaroo love,