Australia Day 2008
Not quite an Australian, yet, this was the first year I actually 'celebrated' OZ day... and it was quite good! I might do it again next year! It started out like any other weekend. Just at home doing my thing, and then at about 1PM heard some loud 'noise' from outside. There was an airshow of some sort, by the Royal Australian Air Force or something. But I was still in my lazy mood so decided to go on with my business (couch potatoing), and then at about 2PM, another air show lasted about 15minutes. This time, the sunshine was calling me out. My boyfriend and I decided to head to Hyde Park to grab some foodie. After all there were stalls and what nots at the park. So inviting!!
So we headed out and first stop was Hyde Park fountain area. There was a huge number of crowd, who had a head start. They were all lazing on the grass munching and enjoying barbie and wine, chattering away. So we ate under the tree, enjoying the cool breeze and wishing we started our day earlier.
After late lunch, we headed to Circular Quay hoping to get a glimpse of the Tall Ships Show, it was scorching hot, while we waiting on a bench. But the live bands kept us entertained. We did people watch as well! It was very amusing to find how the Aussies celebrate their day. There was this young highschool teen I saw geared from head to toe, in Aussie flags and colours. Down from the slipper, skirt, shirt, cap, tatoos on the cheek and arm, PLUS she was carrying a flag! Talk about patriotism. There were quite a number of people wearing the flag as a cape. And another girl, wearing the flag as a bandeau! name it, and am sure someone was wearing it that way! In some ways I guess it can be a bit rude, but hey for as long as you're not stepping on the flag, all is just done in the name of OZ day cheer.
After watching the Elegant ships pass through the Opera House/Harbour Bridge, we headed off to Darling Harbour for dinner at the Pancakes on the Rocks resto. And afterwards, we took our spot by the breakwater, together with the thousands of people who claimed their spots to watch tonight's show. The Fireworks rendition at about 9pm. It was a long long wait, but it was worth it. The hype that was built, and the camaraderie that the crowd was enjoying during the wait. Across from us, there was this uber cute baby who had a flag tatoo on her cheek. The wait was more amusing watching her play and enjoy. After the long long wait. The Aussie National anthem played. Everyone stood up, and it was just something. I have never really felt the meaning of it. Standing up to their anthem made me feel part Aussie in a way. Officially that won't happen until maybe early next year, but part of me feels that I am slowly accepting it.
It's the first time I celebrated OZ day in the four years that I've been here. But, it was something. I live in a sweet beautiful city that had a lot to offer. Great sights and nice bunch of surfer dudes and dudettes that can just be a bunch of down to earth laidback people. Next year, I may not be one of them yet, officially. But I have embraced Sydney to be part of my life. Thus, the value of OZ day for me.