I mentioned on Monday that I’d been invited to an Australia Day party but wasn’t sure whether it would go ahead in view of the tragic events surrounding poor Doug the koala.
But with true Australian spirit, we pressed on and we partied!
But first, what is Australia Day?
Fortunately, I explained a bit about that in my post last year, so for those looking to know more about Australia Day’s history, read my first post about Australia Day which you can find here……
Now that you know what it is, let’s get on with the party. It started early, around midday, because with ill thought-out timing, after more than six weeks off of school, the new term starts on January 27th.
That’s today of course, the day after Australia Day. So we couldn’t afford a late night for the children. Nobody wants a hangover on their first day back at school, do they? (I mean the adults of course, you know, getting up, getting the kids ready.)
So what is an Australia Day party really like?
The party hosts were our good friends Mark and Louise. They live just five minutes drive up the road, up in them thar hills.
More or less as soon as we got there, the kids got their togs on and jumped into the pool. They seemed to stay there virtually all day. Don’t worry, in the shade to the right there was always a responsible adult looking over them.
Meanwhile, all the irresponsible adults were sitting around the alfresco bar, drinking tinnies, supping wine and talking absolute nonsense; Cuban dancing, pop-up roadside bars, goats, that sort of thing……
Not everybody could handle the heat though, or was it the drink? Or is it just that koalas seem to sleep all the time? See him, crashed in the middle of the floor? They are cute, but sometimes……
Of course, there was a barbecue spitting out snags (sausages) and succulent steaks. I should have taken a photograph of this, but, funny as it may seem, I was busy having fun.
The party was also a “bring a plate” party. This is not what we initially thought when we first heard of it. “Perhaps there will be lots of people there and they won’t have enough crockery to go round” we pondered.
No, it’s not that. The plate you bring with you should have some home-made food on it to complement the meat coming from the barbie. We took a potato salad.
When everybody was suitably lubricated, it was time to play some sport. This is Australia, after all! Given the heat on the day, it must have been around 35°C, for the first time in my life I was glad that the sport was cricket.
And because this is Australia, the result is all important.
We won! By “we”, I mean the side that me and my daughter were on. The result was not a big surprise. I was also umpire.
So that is how we all celebrated Australia Day.
But how Australian were we?
Well, me and my wife were representing Southend and Billericay in Essex (UK). Our hosts were representing Harlow (Essex, again) along with another couple, so all in, four were from Harlow.
Then there was Mr and Mrs Midlands, Wolverhampton and Birmingham I think; Mr and Mrs Sunderland and London; Mr Scotland with his wife who is an Everton fan, so must be from Liverpool. (Why else support Everton?) Another guy from Liverpool with his wife who is from Bradford, and then there was another husband in amongst it all who was from Oxford.
But wait for it, drum roll please!
Four were from Australia.
I told you Australia was a nation of immigrants. Today, we were more of a “tight knit” nation of immigrants. 15 from the UK and 4 from Oz. But it doesn’t matter, it was Australia Day and we all had a great time.
Thanks Mark and Lou.
Do you want to live in Australia?
If you hope to be living here in Australia during an Australian Day at some point in the future, then perhaps a good place to start would be to attend a “getting down under” seminar. You can read what I originally said about this event in my post about it by clicking here….
If you are able to get to London this weekend, it’s not too late to get tickets. You can meet recognised migration experts who will explain every aspect of making the move to Australia, take advantage of a free visa assessment and much more.
Read more about it over at Down Under Live and book your London tickets, you can currently get two for one, here at Down Under Live London Bookings – Update: Link removed. Event now over. The show is this weekend, January 30th and 31st, 2010.