Monday, 26 January 2009

Australia Day

Today is Australia Day and so a public holiday long weekend during which I have done NO SCIENCE. I have at least spent a fair chunk of time catching up with some sciencey blogs I have neglected. I am still getting used to public holidays unaccompanied by thesis-guilt, although I am sure that unfinished-manuscript-guilt is lurking somewhere in the background waiting to surprise me as I turn a corner or open a closet.

Australia Day is always an interesting exercise in cultural observation to me as a person who grew up elsewhere. For many folk I know, the national day is devoted to stereotypically Aussie activities such as barbecues, cricket, spending time with mates, going to the beach and drinking beer. It's usually a pleasant day for me, although I'm not decided where I stand in the debate on the appropriateness of January 26th as Australia Day. Today is the anniversary of the arrival in Australia of the First Fleet of colonising Europeans and as such is considered by some as more of an Invasion Day. I have to say I can see their point...

So how did we choose to mark the occasion? Well, nothing too extravagant: a lazy breakfast, as befits a public holiday Monday, then out for lunch at the fab Ironbark Cafe which is not too far out of our way for a visit. They specialise in Australian food, including native Australian ingredients and had live music and specials for the national day. But we were a bit boring as on this occasion we both wanted a favourite: beer-battered flathead (fish) fillets with a native Aussie salad and chips. The chips come tossed in tasty Aussie bush spices...mmmm. I also have a very soft spot for the native lime soft drink, conveniently just out of frame in my photo below.

If you're ever in the area, try it, I doubt you'll have had comparable food elsewhere (but if you have please tell me where). So, it was a nice quiet day out then home for a cup of tea, a book and watching the Aussies lose to South Africa at cricket. Perhaps not the Australia Day they were hoping for...

No comments:

Post a Comment