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society:australia-thoughts

What?

Some thoughts from my first visit to Australia. All impressions are subjective, you always see as different what is reasonably different from your normal environments.. I will write about these topics in greater detail on lang-8: https://lang-8.com/769495/journals .

  • I understand all signs on streets. Living since 3 years in Japan, but there are still signs etc. in dayly life which I do not understand
  • Seeing leafs on street: “Ah, leaves from last autum. But conserved well. Oh wait, this is the southern hemisphere. So summer just ends here, and these are the first leaves of this season!”
  • Australia is a young country.
    • Reading up on history of i.e. a city is fast, it's just 150 years, since British came. This is so different from German or Japanese history.
    • Being a young country, people also often have interesting stories to tell. I.e. “My grandpa was in the war. An other soldier died in his arms. He then went to the dead soldiers family to report, and ended up marrying from that soldiers family.”
    • Things are less formal, people dress less formal. Short trousers at the office. Just some generations before, they arrived and did setup villages.. that spirit is maybe seen with less formalities.
  • People have an outgoing character
    • people have many tatoos, hair exoticly styled
    • Yet, in bathes (even a bath similar to Japanese onsen), people wear bathing trousers. I guess that sense is coming from the British ancestors: British also sit in sauna with bathing trousers. Different from Germany (we have mixed sauna, where people are nude) and Japan (sauna separated, people are nude)
  • Australia has a high level of surveilence:
    • At a street crossing, there are video cameras. When a couple is crossing the street in a place where it's not allwed, a loudspeaker goes of saying “this is an area under suveilance”. This is really leading to a 'big brother is watching you' environment.
    • After purchasing a data sim card at a supermarket, one has to register with name and the passport details: so traffic can be linked down to my person. Some hotels seem to use just WPA AP's, traffic not mapped to the person.
    • People often use credit cards, many machines credit card only. Virgin Australia airline charges you for a drink via card. You can even donate money for exhibitions with your card. Germans and Japanese like to pay cash.
  • It's warm in Australia, also in winter. Car temperature sensor for outside temperature was showing up to 42deg Celsius.
  • At least 4 Japanese colleagues in our Australia offices selected Australia to work from: its a country easy to live in (住み安い). Coworkers leave work around 16:30 or 17:00.
  • Many bikers on streets, and helmet required. Australian rugby/football without protectors.
  • prices
    • Fruits are tasty and not to expensive, many are grown in Australia
    • Lunch is expensive. “France has three times the population of Australia and is 15 times smaller, that means its average density is 45 times higher than in Australia.”
    • 10% taxes on products and services.
  • Environment
    • There are many SUV (cars used by single persons, sized like jeeps, while smaller ones would also be sufficient)
    • There are partly environment activities, I saw straws made from paper. Also Europe makes laws in that direction.
    • Mostly coal powered energy generation. Also see the Australia part of https://www.electricitymap.org .
    • Free public transport (train/tram) in center of Melbourne and Brisbane.
  • Education:
    • More western style than Asian style: so it's more important to understand something than to memorize.
    • There is need to learn other languages if one speaks English as mother tongue..
    • People are aware of environment change and rising sea levels.
  • Supermarket chain 7/11 exists (like in Japan), but has no onigiri
  • sweets portions are bigger, to big for me. Japanese portions are to small. Many people are doing sports, many cyclists and bike lanes. There are great fruits, yoghurt.
society/australia-thoughts.txt · Last modified: 2019/03/15 06:32 by chris