It's Australia Day. I've always had funny feelings about today. You can read more about that here. Adding to those feelings is a belief that the way we celebrate is somewhat in-congruent with our multi-cultural make-up. On average we take in 170,000 migrants each year from countries as diverse as the United Kingdom, China, Phillipines, South Africa, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Thailand, Indonesia, United States, Afganistan, Iran, Ireland, Pakistan, Singapore, Burma and Bangladesh (source). But I am yet to see any of these cultural influences reflected in mainstream media. The stereotypes abound. We see images of people going to the beach wrapped in Australian flags, drinking beer, throwing 'shrimp' on the barbie, wearing thongs and budgie smugglers and calling each other 'mate' or as some would say 'maaaaaattte'.
It makes me think about how well I fit the stereotype.
Going to the beach. Yes it's a beautiful place and I don't mind it for a few hours a few times each summer, but beyond that I am not all that fussed. I bear the complexion of my English ancestors and look more at home walking down Oxford Street in London than sunning myself on a beach 'Down Under'. I can light up a dark street at night and one of my nicknames in primary school was 'Casper the Friendly Ghost'. What does this mean? I burn within 15 minutes, I go bright red before peeling and once again turning a translucent shade of pale. I also don't like being pummelled by waves and getting sand up my crack. Just sayin'.
Moving onto beer. Not a fan. It's yeasty, makes me feel bloaty. About the only time I enjoy a beer is when I go to the pub with friends and I buy myself a Mexican Corona with a wedge of lime before switching to my usual New Zealand Sauvingnon Blanc. Epic patriotic fail. I know. BBQ's. Yes I love a good barbie as much as the next Aussie, but throwing shrimp on? For my American followers, we don't call them shrimp, we call them prawns and very rarely do I or any of my friends throw a prawn at our barbie. It's a treat, but generally not a staple. Thanks for that misconception 1984 Paul Hogan 'Çroc Hunter' Tourism propaganda, oops I mean promotion.
Thongs. Yes I wear thongs, but only at home from the back door to the clothes line or down to the veggie patch to pick some tomatoes. They are daggy peeps and adding bling or overpaying for a pair of Havianna's that look like the thongs from the $2 shop really doesn't change that - in my humble opinion.
Oh and if you hear me call you mate, it's only because I have forgotten your name. It fits in the same category as 'love', 'darl' and 'sweetie'. So yeah, I rarely say it maaaattte!
So what's planned for the day? Not much. I might take my boy down to the local Saltwater Freshwater Festival and have a look around. I would like to eat some fresh damper with golden syrup, another sweet Australian tradition, but I have a wheat intolerance so I won't be doing that. I am what Aussie's call a big fat wowser!
My name is Bree, I am 31 years old and I am mum to a gorgeous boy called William.
I am a daughter to wonderful parents, wife to a kind husband, youngest of five sisters and a fortunate friend to many.
I am currently on maternity leave. I work with young people in a community development capacity and also as a teacher for TAFE NSW.
I have created this blog to share the experience of motherhood and to enhance this experience through shared stories, information and advice. I hope you will join me on the journey!