Daily Archives: March 6, 2012

The Wonderful People Down Under

Michelle Zurcher is a student in Cooley’s Australia Study Abroad Program.  This is her second posting from Down Under.

Michelle Zurcher (l) with Cooley colleagues Dan McCann, Mandi Bucceroni, and Tiffany Fifer

Michelle Zurcher (l) with fellow Cooley students Dan McCann, Mandi Bucceroni, and Tiffany Fifer

I thought when I went to the Outback restaurant this past fall in Michigan that it would really help me know Australians.  I also thought the highest earning Australian movie – “Crocodile Dundee” – was going to be right on point with each Aussie I met.  Just so you know, I have never seen a crocodile wrestler, nor have I seen Paul Hogan in person.  When I arrived in sunny Sydney, however, I realized that I was wrong about what I knew before coming to AU.  Here is why I was wrong….

Australians are perhaps the friendliest people I have ever met internationally.  Melbourne is a big city that has a small hometown atmosphere.  Maybe that’s why people love living here so much.  They tend to be relaxed in every moment – even during a morning rush hour when the tram has come to a sudden halt due to a mechanical problem.  As a whole they seem very fit, jolly, good looking, and have nice accents.  And don’t you worry – I have heard many Aussies speak, and, yes, their accents vary depending on what location they are from.  (For example, south Australia accents sound more like the British whereas western accents sound like a stronger Australian accent.)

So why are Australians so happy?  Maybe it’s the strong sun light beaming down on the hot street pavement.  Perhaps because Aussies seem fit and eat healthy fresh fruits and vegetables from the busy Queen Victoria Market.  I mean, Australians don’t even have movie theatre butter to squirt on their popcorn!  

 More Australian terms to know:

1. “Bloke.”  That’s a male.

2. “Sheila.”  That’s a female.

3. “Mate.”  That’s generally a male, but could also be a friend.

4. “Cheers.”  When a mate is pushing a stroller at 2:00 in the afternoon and you hold the door open for them, they are not telling you “cheers” to lift your glass.   This term means “thank you.”

5. “No Worries.”  This is a common reply to “cheers,” and it means “you’re welcome.” 

6. “Lemonade” is not what the eight-year-old is attempting to sell in your residential neighborhood.  Lemonade is “Sprite” pop.  


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