Sydney. NOT the Capital of Australia

I’m not a big fan of Sydney. But then I suspect Sydney cares very little for me too. As I’m not a fan, I will be brief. We’ll take a quick look around and then we’ll call it a day. Is that OK with you?

What is my problem with Sydney? I am going to talk from the viewpoint of someone who is thinking of quitting the UK (or anywhere) to emigrate to Australia. I think that makes sense given the nature of this blog.

I can’t see the big advantage of moving to Sydney. It is, of course, a big city. The biggest in Australia. It’s pretty crowded. Housing is expensive. Something like the 13th most expensive city in the world. There’s lots of traffic. Cost of living in Sydney is high, being around the 21st most expensive city in the world in which to live.

Is this reminding you of somewhere? Unless you are moving out of London into Sydney, it’s going to be dearer than what you’re used to and busier than what you’re used to. Don’t get me wrong. I’d rather live in Sydney than anywhere in the UK and I’d definitely rather live in Sydney than in London. But if you’re going to be coming all this way, AND you have a choice (if you have to come to Sydney because of a job then just do it, don’t let me put you off), I’d choose somewhere other than Sydney. Well I did. Brisbane!

What did I like?

I really enjoyed watching the techno-didgeridoo guys around the harbour. So much so, I bought a CD by “The Web” called Spirit Of The Land. Aborigines meet Hawkwind.

Sydney also has a couple of cool beaches. Some prefer Bondi, some Coogee. I say, spot the difference……

Bondi Beach

Bondi Beach

Coogee Beach

Coogee Beach

And from the other angle…..

Bondi Beach

Bondi Beach

Coogee Beach

Coogee Beach

That’s Sydney covered, now I want to talk about the weather. Come on! I’m British. It’s my favourite subject. When we left Port MacQuarie yesterday, it was 37°C. We knew from reading a newspaper that in Sydney it had been 41°C the previous day. When we got to Sydney, although it was early evening, it was still pretty and hot. Next day, from the comfort of our air-conditioned hotel room we looked out of the window at clear skies. We were in for another hot day. Not so! As we hit the streets wearing just T shirts and shorts it wasn’t long before my little daughter was saying ” daddy, I’m cold” – and it was. Just 17°C. How about that for a temperature swing. It wouldn’t be the first time either.

It’s easy to make the mistake of thinking Sydney, largest city in Australia, population of around 4.2 million, is the capital. But, of course, it isn’t. Here’s what happened (apparently). Sydney, which is in New South Wales, (NSW) wanted to be the capital. Melbourne, which is in Victoria and is the second largest city in Australia at 3.6 million, wanted to be the capital. Heated discussions between Sydney and Melbourne ensue. More heated discussions between NSW and Victoria ensue. Neither wants to come second. No-one wants to loose face. Wadayagonnado?

That’s easy. Stick the capital somewhere in between. But hold on, in between is fine but it still has to be in NSW or Victoria? Wadayagonnadonow? Hmmm.

That’s easy. We’ll give the area it’s own name, we’ll call it Australian Capital Territory (ACT). And so, Canberra, population of around 340,000 in ACT is the capital of Australia. Saved faces all round. That’s politics!

Next, the long drive to Melbourne.

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{ 5 comments… add one }
  • Michael Jordana February 13, 2013, 8:18 am | Link

    Sorry for the aggravation.

  • Michael Jordana February 11, 2013, 7:38 pm | Link

    Well, well, looks like we touched a nerve there, didn’t we? Look, if you say it’s a typo, okay, fine. Good answer. Nobody can contradict that. Just remember what Randy K Milholland said, “Typos are very important in all written form. It gives the reader something to look for so they aren’t distracted by the total lack of content in your writing.” Ha ha! Sorry, couldn’t resist. Actually, your article was fine, and I must say I’ve read a lot of them lately, trying to catch up.

    And it’s not that I consider myself a self-appointed Spell Checker of the Internet — though I must confess I like the sound of that title, heh heh. I just think it’s worth it to defend and preserve the English language in this electronic age of abbreviations and shortcuts and malapropisms.

    So whenever I see something like this, I feel a responsibility to speak out. It may be futile, as you say, but if I can set one person on the road to better English, it’s well worth it.

    So be careful what you write — I’ll be watching. Cheers!

    • BobinOz February 12, 2013, 9:31 pm | Link

      No nerves touched here Michael, but what does get my goat, if you need to know, are people who come in here to make comments that do nothing except attempt to big note themselves. Look around at the other comments, you’ll see mainly its people asking for help and people giving those people some help.

      I don’t really have time to cross swords with you, nor do I care to. Even with this latest reply to me you are casting doubt over whether it really is a typo, and you are using it to further try and convince anyone who cares just how “clever” you are.

      To me, you are only clever if you are adding something to the conversation or helping someone, if you’re not you are just a drain on mine and other people’s resources.

      My comment policy only really has two rules; be nice to people and stay on topic. This website is not about the Queen’s English, it’s about life in Australia. Please keep all of my points in mind if you choose to comment again.

  • Michael Jordana February 10, 2013, 11:40 pm | Link

    “No-one wants to loose face.” Hmm, what’s wrong with this picture?

    Easy, “loose” is typically an adjective or adverb meaning unrestrained or free. It can also be used as a verb, to indicate that you are freeing, releasing, or removing the restraints or fetters on some object. On the other hand, “lose,” with one O, is a verb meaning to fail to keep, preserve, or maintain, or to suffer the deprivation of something, or to be defeated in a contest.

    For some reason, these two words are easily mixed up when writing. Specifically, a lot of people write “loose” when they really mean “lose,” as in this case.

    I would not be making a big deal of this here, Bob in Oz — I’m used to boorish and poorly educated Americans and Aussies who blog like this often. They are the same dolts who write “Virtue is it’s own reward,” erroneously writing “it’s” when “its” is the correct possessive term.

    But you’re a Brit, Bobinoz — a Pommie, a Tommy, a Redcoat — no one is more native to English than the English themselves. You are not only the speaker, but also the KEEPER, of the Queen’s English. I believe I should be able to expect more from you. So make me proud!

    • BobinOz February 11, 2013, 6:01 pm | Link

      Thank you for wasting your time telling me what I already knew. What you are looking at is what we call a typo. Good luck with your self appointed task of spell checking the Internet, seems like a futile mission to me, but if it makes you happy…

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