What Australia Day is to me
What is Australia Day?
I often hear people ask, “What is Australia Day?” To each of us it represents different things. For some it is just a day off work, to others it is a day of celebration, a BBQ with friends and family in the sunshine or a day to pack up an esky with cold snaggers and a few cold drinks and go watch the fireworks.
Or it could be a day of reflection, time to think about the European and Indigenous history that bought us to where we are today.
Google certainly put that thought in forefront today with their Google Doodle. Across the internet and social media are all the debates and pros and cons of the latest image. The theme was “If I could travel back in time I would…” and the young artist portrayed “a weeping mother sitting in an ochre desert, dreaming of her children and a life that never was… all that remains is red sand, tears and the whisper of her stolen dreamtime”.
Wow, how poignant. If you hadn’t before thought about how this hugely diverse population and can-do nation came to be, this artwork gives you a story to start with, reminding of the price that Indigenous people paid for our privilege.
Many Australians are aware of the past atrocities that occurred and others bury their head in the sand in ignorance of the past. Google puts it right out there with this amazing artwork as a tribute to Australia’s indigenous in a reminder of what the British settlers, early people and past politicians did.
It is sad what happened to the Aboriginals back then, how the Government treated their people and we can all learn from aboriginal culture. Unlike other countries, as an Australian child I did not learn about Aboriginal culture in school and not sure if it is included in all school curriculums today. If not, I believe that should change, we shouldn’t ignore what happened and just move on are to continue to build a positive future. Australian children and all Australians should be taught to understand the culture of our first people without being made to feel guilty for what the settlers did as ignoring our indigenous culture and history creates a lot of negativity.
I support an Australia Day of multiculturalism and want to celebrate our country and the beauty here. After all, diversity is Australia’s strength and we embrace the diverse cultures of our immigrant Australians in the Aussie spirit of eat, drink and be merry.
Food is a perfect example of some of the cultures we have learnt to accept and understand. Whilst this may conjure up a vision of “bush tucker” with our indigenous people’s unique hunter gatherer diet of witchetty grubs and bush berries, the British also strongly influenced our culinary taste. Today roast dinners of lamb or beef, the Aussie meat pie and fish and chips remain hugely popular.
The good old Aussie BBQ reinforces meat as the core food in our cuisine. A great love affair with meat, our great weather and our love of the outdoors, put the barbie among our favourite cooking methods and past times. At the heart of Australia Day is the snagger, banger or the good ol’ beef sausage. There’s something about a snag in a roll or slice of bread and today many a Bunnings store will have queues of DIY’ers indulging this great Aussie passion.
I doubt there would an Australia who today would not have started their day with Weetbix and a Milo or some toast and Vegemite.
Maybe for lunch, another Aussie icon, a hamburger with beetroot, a Chiko Roll, or if from the West a Mrs Macs pie and if in the East probably a Four & Twenty pie. A classic for dinner tonight for those not going to the Australia day fireworks might be to head down to the local pub for their ‘Pint and Parma” special, a chicken parmigiana and a beer. Then for a treat a massive slice of pav for dessert.
Those waiting at the vantage points to see the fireworks will possibility have a snack on Sao’s, maybe some fairy bread for the kids and some cold sausages. Seafood is another Aussie favourite so another popular picnic meal would be a prawn roll. Or something sweet for afters? How about a lamington or a few Tim Tams?
As much as I love travel, Australia is the best country in the world and I for one will be celebrating that we live here. I am happy I was born in this beautiful country and very proud to call myself Australian.
Australia Day is the perfect time to showcase life down under and our major landmarks like Sydney Opera House, Uluru, Bondi, MCG, etc. But I want to include a few photos of the less known landmarks in the west like Wave Rock, Pinnacles and the Kimberley’s.
Now off to Bunnings to grab a sausage in a bun and get on with celebrating the fact we live in such a wonderful country, full of wonderful people from all over the world.
Let the fireworks begin… Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi
What does today’s Google Doodle mean to you? How will you be spending Australia Day? Please leave a comment below and let us know below.
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