Thursday, October 22, 2009

Australia nostalgia

It’s always a bit nostalgic to be home. My old “girl’s room” (that mom and dad have been kind enough to not touch) is a library of photo albums (I grew up before the digital camera), written short stories and diaries. Basically I’ve always been like I am not: a junkie when it comes to writing and photographing. Can’t get enough of it.

It’s great fun to look back at the time that has passed. I think one of the absolute best time periods in my life was the 3 years I spent in Western Australia when I did my BA degree. Gosh, I miss that place. It really must be the sunshine and the climate that makes people so friendly over there, because I haven’t experienced the same general niceness and friendly atmosphere anywhere else in the world (having said that, though, I obviously haven’t been everywhere. Although I think I’ve travelled quite a lot).

It’s real typical that Australia is one of those countries where it’s hard to get a visa and a sponsorship, unless you’re a professional in a “needed” industry (which I’m not). I’d give up my European passport any day if I could get a green card to Australia. Ahhhrgg, why do we always want what we can’t have? Anyways, at least I still have my memories. Better than nothing I guess.

(Actually, much better!)

Driving down to Margret River -gorgeous place for all wine lovers!

This collector's wall has been featured in Vogue if I don't remember things incorrectly. I used to live a few streets away from her in east Fremantle.
Back in the days when I always had a tan (but a bad hair 'do!)
Family came to visit in 2003, and my little brother (not that little anymore) reminded me who's in charge
Margret River

(Note to self: must get a job soon, save up, and go back for a visit. Haven't been there since I left in 2005.)


Pete In Syracuse said...

I've always wanted to go to Australia, never to live but visit, although I'm sure that would change once I got there! What do you think Jonna? What was one of the fondest memories you have of Australia besides friendly people & something that you wouldn't mind missing if you went back!?

Jonna Wibelius said...

Pete -I have one word for you: GO!

I swear, you r going to have the best time. What an amazing country.

Some of my fave things to do in the Perth/Freo area include...:

Beers (little creatures beers!) and pizza at the brewery Little Creatures in Fremantle.

Breakfast at Dome Cafe in Freo (=Fremantle)

Sunday Session at some bar at Cottesloe beach

Sunset cinema at King's Park

Burswood Casino

Lunch/drink/dinner on some place at King's street in Perth

Afterwork session at Subiaco hotel in Subiaco

Leighton Beach (near north Fremantle)

Running around Swan River (in south perth), one lap is almost 10 km

...want me to go on?! The list is endless!!! :)

Monsieur Beep! said...

Your article was so interesting to read. I also have the impression that the hot climate makes people friendlier, it must be the sun rays and their positive influence on the psyche, which I notice each time when I'm in Gran Canaria.
I even wrote about this in one of my recent blogs. My regular abode is in Germany though, where I live with my spouse and earn a living in the agricultural service field.
Australia also fascinates me, although I haven't been there yet.
If you'd like to visit my gallery:
Have a good day zai jian.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jonna,

Firstly, I have to say I enjoy reading your blog. I am from Perth, Australia moving to Shenzhen next year. I also study Mandarin. But I disagree with you about Perth. It is a nice place but it isn't that great. The people are friendly but they are also quite backward for a Western country. Maybe nostalgia has meant you have forgotten the painfully slow paced nature of Perth, people being scared of change (e.g. daylight saving and extended shopping hours) and general lack of public courtesy. Don't miss this place too much and I hope you enjoy your time in China.

Jonna Wibelius said...

Anonymous -funny, many Australians have told me that. However, that doesn't change the way I feel about Perth. Love that place. Would do anything (almost!) to live there again. For a Swede, not used to that kind of sunshine and friendliness, it's pure paradise. :) I can tell we are coming from different backgrounds :)

James said...

Hello Jonna,

Greetings from Perth! Thankyou for your lovely comments about Australia. My wife is from China so I travel there occasionally and always enjoy the trip and love the food (usually go for a month in Beijing) but when I get back here I take a deep breath of fresh air look up at the clear blue sky and appreciate Perth all the more. It is going to be a lovely weekend here, 30 degree days, I'll take the kids to the beach and have a few beers as I do some gardening in the back yard. Spring in Perth is the best time of the year, as you probably know.

We do have our share of rednecks here as there is still a bit of a 'frontier' spirit and yes they do vote down sensible things like daylight saving but the nice thing is that they can have their say even if I don't agree with it.

I have been reading your blog for some time, I enjoy your writing and appreciate the effort you put into it. Keep it up!



Chrissy said...

I have the same fondness for the land down under!

I studied in Sydney for a couple of years and came back to Singapore. That was in 2004.
I last visited in June 2008 and it brought back such sweet memories.

I have to agree that it's great there, the weather (winters are not too cold!, summers are heaven) Coming from a country where it is tropical all year around. I could get used to living in Oz.People were really friendly as well! I remember getting a huge culture shock when complete strangers would strike up a conversation (Where i'm from, especially in the city areas, everyone would think you're nuts!)

One thing i could possibly never get used to is, the malls are not opened until late unlike in most countries in Asia! but then again i suppose i couldn't really care less :o)

I will be back there in December - at the height of summer so i'm really looking forward to it!!

I'm sure you'd have as much fun when you visit again.

Take care

马麟 said...

Similar to your experience. More than one Swedish girl told me "Swedish girls are mean." But I feel the opposite. Then I ask them why, their responses are like: "maybe I am not typical Swedish girl."

Anonymous said...

Services are bad here. Banks and post offices are not open on Saturdays. Shops are closed for the evening. Houses and pretty much everything are very expensive in Sydney. Sure it is great to have a vacation or being a student, but it is not that convenient to live here!

Jonna Wibelius said...

James -ahhh u r a lucky one to be there.. I envy you!

Chrissy -I hear u... love that place! :) I experienced the same culture shock as u when I first came there and realized people would talk to each other when waiting for the bus/say hi to the driver and so on... I found it so odd at first but it didn't take long before I loved it.

Lucky u who are going back... I hope to do too sometime soon!

马麟 -yeah maybe. Funny, I've never heard that one before.

Anonymous -In Sweden there is no such a thing as a post office! (it's true, we don't have one anymore... U have to go to certain shops to collect your packages. Pain in the a***). Malls are always closed on Sundays and close early other days. And the cost of living we shouldn't even talk about.... + 6 months of dark, cold winter. I'd chose Sydney any day!

Anonymous said...

Hej Jonna,

Jag tror alltid att graset ar gronare pa andra sidan... : ) Sjalv skulle jag garna aka hem till Sverige (vilket jag visserligen ska gora) istallet for att vara har! Men jag skulle garna flytta hem ett tag. Jag har nog glomt bort morkret och kylan for de stor mig inte just nu! : ) Men du, Mikoborde ju se ominte han kan fa visa som ingengor och du kan folja med som hans de facto (och pa sa satt fa arbetstilstand). Ingengorer har varit ett av de yrken som Australien behover! : ) Kram!

Sandra said...

Freo <3

Anonymous said...; You saved my day again.