Happy Australia Day

Today is Australia Day. If you are interested in the history of the day you can read about it here.

Although it is not my place of birth I do feel like I am an Australian.

So, in honour of the day here are my

Top Ten Favourite Things About Australia –

1.The big skies

There is a sense of vastness about an Australian sky where no matter how far you crane your neck you cannot see the beginning or end of it. It is a shining blue and white sky. It is a sky full of dreams.

2. The native birds. The gentle carolling of the magpies and the joyful fluting of the currawongs were the first birdsongs I heard upon arriving in this great southern land. To me their song sings of Australia. You can listen to them here.

3. The oft-used phrase

No Worries

which replaced the more traditional

She’ll be right, mate

sums up the Aussie philosophy for me.

4. The wattle. Makes me sneeze in spring but it is a glorious sight. When it blooms the garden is suddenly dripping with gold.

5. The amazing writers like Robert Gray, Les Murray, Kate Grenville, Tim Winton.

6. Dame Edna Everage

7. Artists like Rosalie Gascoigne, Brett Whiteley, Margaret Olley and Fiona Hall.

8. Rugby Union and Rugby League. Proper footy. None of this soccer rubbish with all those metrosexuals running about on the pitch.

9. Freddo frogs

10. The bush

The crunch of gum leaves underfoot. The slight hint of eucalyptus crisping the air. The hint of spirits hiding in the shadows. The glimpse of little bushland creatures scurrying to safety. The deeper you go, the more you understand the bush, and the more you believe in its power.


23 thoughts on “Happy Australia Day

  1. I would remove Edna Everage from your list, and add:

    1. Cooper’s Bitter
    2. Pies
    3. Kangaroo Island
    4. The ‘Murray Princess’ and
    5. The Ghan


  2. Hi Selma, that is a great list. On mine would be music radio station Triple J – I’m past their target demographic (youth radio, ha!) but I love hearing new music and no commercials. Dame Edna, hilarious – I went to one of her live shows many years ago, will never forget those plastic brown footballs rolled across the stage for the finale, to represent her beloved scorched almonds!


  3. Selma you are the best. At last a positive Australia Day blog. Yes, there are good things about Australia, in fact many things and we are indeed a lucky country (though you wouldn’t believe it going by some strange blogs by some old fuddy duddies about how everything Aussie sucks). I am allergic to wattle but love it anyway (and it is one of my earliest nasal memories) and eucalyptus is divine. I am sorry but soccer is better than those rugby type things. Wide open spaces are the best of all. Dame Edna is also divine.


  4. Happy Australia Day Sel. I for one enjoy the patriotism of this day. My girls went to the beach today with their friends and were wearing their Aussie flag bikinis and their singlets with Australia emblazoned across the front.

    When I lived at Uluru the skies were incredible especially at night where there were no other lights competing with the stars. Love love love Dame Edna but I’m an Aussie Rules girl myself. Wattle is one of my favourite smells ever and I adore the Aussie bush.

    Like you I wasn’t born here but I became an Australian citizen 20 years ago and I have lived here almost my entire life. In my heart I’m a true blue Aussie and always will be.


  5. Happy Australia Day, Selma! I love that first picture … I’m intent on someday living in a place with open skies. I’m thinking Montana or maybe Utah. The views are unreal!


  6. Happy Australia Day, Selma! Although I am a bit late and it has already finished for you.

    It is the big skies that I miss – that and the crisp colours and the warmth and the relaxed way of life and the sea and the people and . . .

    My heart has been aching a little for Australia just lately.


  7. Love your list, the pix are just delightful, and I”m enchanted by the currawong song. Part of the song sounds to me a bit like a cross between a flicker and a king-fisher, but that last part of their song is like nothing I’ve ever heard. So cool!

    Wishing you a (bit belated) happy Australia day πŸ™‚


  8. Beautiful.
    (And the rugby one cracked me up – sounded like something a Scottish friend of mine would say. Is that the Scottish in you? Or is he acting like an Australian?)

    Happy Australia Day (belated, I guess at this point)


  9. Happy Australia Day to you too! Those skies are amazing. Idaho is similar, but they do have mountains off in the distance that cut them off. In SE Texas there were so many trees you’d forget there was a sky! πŸ™‚ Off to listen to those birds….


  10. Happy belated Australia Day!

    I just cracked up at your comment of the metrosexual soccer players!! And yes your freddo chocolate is so good! I really enjoyed the one you sent me last year!

    Australia is a country that has always been a place that I want to visit. Love the pictures! I can’t wait to visit Australia and take tons and tons of pictures!


  11. Hi MELEAH:
    We had a fun Australia Day. It was great to relax!

    Hi IAIN:
    I had a lovely Aussie Day. Hope you did too.

    Great inclusions. I know that Dame Edna is not everyone’s cup of tea but she cracks me up!

    Hi ROWE:
    I haven’t listened to Triple J for ages but I do like keeping abreast of the new music coming through. It was my station of choice for many, many years. Dame Edna is a classic, isn’t she?

    Now that’s what you call a party pooper. I read a couple of those posts too and it peeved me a bit. I know there are a lot of things wrong with this country (like any other country on the planet, actually) but on Aussie Day we should celebrate the positives. Australia has so many things going for it.

    Ha ha. Soccer has become so popular, hasn’t it? I just can’t get past perving at my old beefcake rugby players who are now all young enough to be my sons. I’m a dirty old woman like that!


  12. Ha,ha – less of the old please (you are young like me). My brothers and father all played soccer in the olden days. My mum thought rugby to dangerous so forbid them from playing. Plus we lived down the road from the Taringa Soccer Club.


  13. Hi GYPSY:
    I can imagine how beautiful the skies must be out at Uluru. Breathtaking stuff. I think it’s brilliant that your girls go to the beach in their Aussie cossies. I love that. A lot of my friends like Aussie Rules and of course, support the Sydney Swans, but I don’t understand the game. I really need to go to a game with someone from VIC or SA who can explain it to me!

    Hi KATE:
    I read a book about Montana ages ago and it spoke of the big skies there. It sounds glorious. Hope you make it there one day!

    Hi RELUCS:
    Awwww. Australia does that to you, actually. When I was overseas in my 20s I was all :’I can’t wait to get out of Australia. I’m sick of it. Blah blah blah.’ When I was overseas I thought about Oz and missed it every day. Obviously, there’s no pleasing me!

    Hi KAYT:
    The calls are lovely and quintessentially Australian. You hear them carolling from the gum trees and just feel like you’re home.

    I think it’s a more of an Aussie one because all the Scots I know are mad soccer fans, absolute fanatics. Many of the Aussies I know would never watch soccer, although it’s changing every day!

    Hi TEX:
    Wow. For some reason I didn’t associate Texas with lots of trees. I must be thinking of all the old westerns I watched as a kid where the space was very wide open. Come to think of it, they probably weren’t even set in Texas 😳

    Hi TBALL:
    I hope you get here one day, I really do. I know you would love it!


    Rugby was incredibly dangerous back in the day. A guy I went to school with ended up in a wheelchair after a scrum collapsed on top of him. Even though I love the game I’m not sure I would be happy about my son playing it. I prefer non-contact sports like bird-watching…


  15. I’m right there with you on the whole soccer thing. Give me a true rugby player any day over a “metrosexual”. I always say “no worries”. I must be an Aussie at heart. I am quite resolute that I will visit your lovely land one day…in the not too distant future.

    Happy Australia Day!!


  16. Hi STEPH:
    You are definitely an honorary Aussie. I hope that one day you get to visit. That would be awesome. I also one day hope to visit Chicago. I really like the look of the city!


  17. Hi Selma – belated Happy Australia Day! Though I’ve never been, I have always wanted to visit, and will do that within a few years (I hope!). Funnily enough, I adopted the phrase “No worries” not from an Aussie, but from a fella from New Zealand that I used to work with. It was such a simple yet powerful phrase!


  18. I think you forget the best part of Australia – Fosters! πŸ™‚

    Ok here is my top 10 Aussie things
    1. AC/DC
    2. Fosters
    3. Australian Open
    4. McLeod’s Daughters (love a couple of the chicks in it)
    5. John Butler Trio
    6. INXS
    7. Cate Blanchett
    8. Claudia Black
    9. Bianca Chiminello
    10. Isla Fisher



  19. Hi MANOJ:
    Oh yeah, the Kiwis say it too. I should know, I’m married to one. I hope you get to visit too. You and Roshan should travel together. That would be really cool!

    Hi ROSHAN:
    It tickles me that you like McLeod’s Daughters. I saw John Butler live a couple of years ago and he was fantastic. What a guitar player. INXS are also responsible for writing one of my favourite songs ever ‘ ‘Never Tear Us Apart.’

    “We could live for a thousand years…”


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