Aus Observations

I have travelled to both New Zealand and Australia. When people ask the difference I tell them NZ is more like Canada and Australia is closer to the US. It is maybe somewhere between the US and Canada. Since M & D moved to Australia we have been here a few more times I expected to, so I have had a bit more exposure and observed and noted a few oddities.

Things like the signage. “Illegal dumping prohibited”, seems a waste of paint, if the dumping is illegal it is by definition prohibited. Just sayin’.

It has taken a while, and meeting quite a few Australian couples, but Aussy men treat their wives quite different then we do in Canada. It seems to me that the idea of wife as a chattel has never left this country. They treat women in rather a demeaning fashion. It seems to work with them but I cringe when I notice it.

They have ‘City Bike’ here in the Gold Coast. The system seems odd to me. Most cities have designated pick up and drop off racks for their city bikes. Payment systems differ but if you have a bike you can use it all you want but you have to deposit it at a rack. Here the bikes have GPS chips and can be hired by swiping a UPC code with your cell phone. The bikes are scattered all over the city at random locations. If you are finished riding, you get off, scan the UPC and leave the bike where ever on a street corner or on someone’s front lawn or the middle of a park or at the entrance to a shopping mall. The scanning of the UPC activates (or inactivates) a u-lock on the back tire and where you drop the bike is where it sits until some walks by and wants to ride somewhere. Very weird.

Today I ordered a mushroom burger for lunch and odd as this might seem I got a burger of mushrooms. Not a meat patty with mushrooms on it, the burger was some sort of deep fried batter that contained the sliced mushrooms and melted cheese. There was no meat involved. Should have expected that I guess, but I had the North American model in mind and it was a bit of a disappointment. It was edible though.

Australians are know for their beer drinking but I did not realize they were such gamblers. Driving about Edmonton I am always a bit amazed at how many casinos and such there are, wondering how many people must go there and piss away copious amounts of cash. Here there are gambling opportunities at every street corner. Pokies (VLT’s), off track betting and the like everywhere. I guess Australians make too much money.

Alcohol is readily available at corner stores, burger joints, and other establishments that you could not get it in Canada. Maybe contributes or services Australia’s love of booze, not sure which, but it is things like this is why I say it is more like the US.

Australia is an easy place to travel even though some things amaze me.

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