Moving back to Australia - one year later

June 06, 2015  •  1 Comment

About a year ago, I arrived back in Perth after 9 years in the UK. It's taken a while to adjust back to the Australian way of life.

Here's some things I've noticed while I've settled in Australia:

Lifestyle

  • An incredibly laid back lifestyle. 
  • Most people say "thank you" when they get off the bus, even in peak hour!
  • A traffic jam is anything over 10 cars (and sometimes even less).
  • A "really crowded" train or bus is when there are no spare seats available.

Weather

  • The relief at the end of summer when the daytime temperature drops below 30 degrees and night temperature below 20 degrees.
  • Related to the end of summer: getting excited when it actually rains after months of hot, dry, dusty weather.
  • If it does rain, don't even attempt to go outside as it's too wet. Unable to find umbrellas or rain coats as they haven't been used for months. Chances are it won't rain tomorrow anyway.
  • Any daytime temperature below 20 degrees is "freezing".
  • Relief at the end of "winter" when it's finally getting above 30 degrees. Winter only lasts a month or two anyway.

Language

  • The greeting "How's it going?" without expecting a response.
  • The "Australian Salute" (ie. swishing away flies buzzing around your face)
  • Bogans. The Australian equivalent of chavs. Also "cashed up bogans".
  • Places are called really obvious names:
    • Great Sandy Desert
    • Shark Bay
    • Great Dividing Range
    • Great Barrier Reef
  • FIFO = Fly-in Fly-out. A worker who commutes via plane to their remote work site.
  • The Australian accent. Adam Hills explains: http://youtu.be/KpBYnL5fAXE

Clothing

  • It's perfectly acceptable to take off your thongs (ie. flip-flops) and walk around someone's house barefoot. Especially on a hot day.
  • Dressing up means not wearing thongs (ie. flip-flops).
  • Board shorts are acceptable clothing in almost any situation.
  • "Hi-Vis" (high visibility) clothing is acceptable anywhere since it's common workwear. It's acceptable to go to the FIFO airport in your high visibility/safety gear. If you don't, you'll be the only one in the entire airport not wearing high-vis clothing. Spoken from experience.

 


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Liz Fraser(non-registered)
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