Apparently we have two research papers due this week based on the history of Australia lecture class I never attended. Since I'm not getting credit and never plan on doing another research paper as long as I live, here are some stand out observations I've made during my study (study?) abroad.
Even with its familiar mother tongue, I knew The Land Down under differed greatly from the Land of the Free (although coming home to the new leader of the free world and protests jarred my vision of the America I knew before my departure)
-For one, the waitress at Grill'd (Shoutout to @mariellesalem for discovering a veggie burger that kicks By Chloe’s ass!) OFFERED to add extra Avo slices on my toast for no extra charge. Which baffled me the way it does Chipotle lovers to discover their extra Avo cost them a week’s paycheck.
- By subsidizing Australians’ college tuition, the Aussie government makes education affordable and in turn gives equal opportunity to those seeking higher learning or a profession. But in the land of the “free” 44 million Americans are drowning in student debt and owe 1.3 trillion dollars to a government eating away both our tax dollars and our education. And get this—they have triple the amount of vacation days that we have (!!!) Making the move? I'll come with.
- After walking the clean streets of both Melbourne and Sydney, I never once saw a wrapper or piece of gum lying on the granite floors. What came as more of a surprise surfaced by way of seeing zero garbage cans ANYWHERE within walking distance, forcing me to hold my garbage the way one would hold their pee until they found a bathroom.
- On that no bathroom note, most stores closed at 5pm anyways due to the laid back Aussie lifestyle so it was awfully difficult to find a place after a drunken night on the town. Even bars and clubs closed at early hours due to “lock out laws” to diminish drunken bar hopping.
- Maybe that’s why crime rate is so low in Aussie. Srsly though, the phrase “don’t talk to strangers” was not something mum taught them growing up.
- Being the liberals they are, priding themselves on being an equal opportunity country with equality laws and social structure that run the gamut, they are appalled by Trump the same way Americans are. If one were to ever utter the word American, our ears were chewed off by anyone waiting to hear the latest riot or opinion back home. For such a liberal country, with a unisex toilet in every bar, university, and store we frequented—They have *gasp* yet to legalize gay marriage.
-Aussie is one of the most multicultural countries, (for those that know I’m a nerd bucket for statistics I’m about to go on a tangent so bear with me!). About 26.8 percent of the population were born outside of Australia. America and Australia are about the same size in area but Australia’s population has 22.9 million people while America boasts an * overpopulated * 324 million people.
-The locals are as proper and sweet as one would think but it was too proper for my liking. Nobody yells in the streets; everybody seems pretty sane. Even the crazies. Which sort of put me into a very real culture shock coming from the hubbub of NYC.
-Okay okay I can’t contain my excitement for this last one. But fanny packs are actually a trendy mens’ accessory in Aussie most often seen at clubs worn across the body. I finally feel like I belong.