Saturday, September 3, 2011

So Many Things I Didn't Know Before The Trip!!...Did You Know This?!!

      *Yawn*...Please forgive me today. I am exhausted! It was a long, involved, and awesome 'virtual' 'Date Night' trip this time! :-] ...And I know you already know where we went. My clue was kinda...Ummm...obvious! LOL Yes, we went to Australia!! :-)
       If info about other places bores away now!! LOL I learned some things I didn't know and...tired or not...I just have to share!! :-] ...I'll do it in a "Did You Know" list. For instance...
 Did You Know...that Australia is a country in the Southern Hemisphere,...that it comprises the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans,...and that it's the world's sixth-largest country by total area?!

             ...and that the name Australia is derived from the Latin australis, meaning "southern"?!!...and that because of it's size and isolation—it's often dubbed the 'island continent' and variably considered the world's largest island?!!...I didn't know that!
          You probably knew that "Aussie" is a common colloquial term for "Australian". But...

Did You Know...that the country has been referred to colloquially as "Oz" since the early 20th century?! Hmmm...does that have something to do with the people being referred to as 'Aussies'?!! Or is that just an American error?! :-) (You can go over to Wikipedia to read more about it HERE) I think it's fascinating!...and either way, I didn't know that!

Did You Know...that Australia is the flattest continent?!...And that The Great Barrier Reef, the world's largest coral reef, lies a short distance off of it's north-east coast?...Or that 'Desert' or 'semi-arid' land, commonly known as the "outback", makes up by far the largest portion of land in Australia?!

Did You Know...that nearly three quarters of Australians live in metropolitan cities and coastal areas, and that the beach is an integral part of the Australian identity.
        Are you beach-lovers drooling right now?!...^_^

Did You Know...that Australian forests are mostly made up of evergreen species, particularly eucalyptus trees in the less arid regions?!...The little fella in my header photo probably knew that! ^_^

Did You Know...that Australia has strong international teams in cricket, field hockey, netball, rugby league and rugby union, having been Olympic or world champions at least twice in each sport in the last 25 years (or more now) for both men and women?!...Okay, so I 'did' know this! That's because me and hubby are such sports nuts ourselves! We've watched some Australian games...lots of them over the years! :-]

Did You Know...that although Australia has no official language, English is so entrenched that it has become the de facto national language?!....Okay, yeah...I kinda knew that too! But sometimes I have 'a time' trying to understand how they use some of those 'English' words just the same!! LOL {I'm sure they feel the same about American English words! ^_^}

Did You Know...that Australia has the greatest number of reptiles of any country, with 755 species?!...and that Australia is also home to many dangerous animals, including some of the most venomous snakes in the world?!!...YES!!!! I knew this!!...*cold shiver*...A lot of their animals scare me!!...But not all of them...

Did You Know...that among the well-known Australian animals are the monotremes?!...If you're asking yourself: "What are they?"'re asking yourself the same question I asked myself while we were visiting there!! ^_^...And I found out too! :-) Monotremes are mammals that lay eggs instead of giving birth to live young!...Two monotremes are the platypus...
        ...and the Echidna! The  long-beaked Echidna, which eats worms...
        ...and the short-beaked Echidna, also known as the Spiny Anteater...because of its diet of ants and termites...
       The only surviving examples of monotremes are all indigenous to Australia and New Guinea!...So fascinating!...They have some famous animals I know you've heard the Dingo...
          A host of marsupials, including the Kangaroo...
     ...the Koala...(That's him in the header photo.) :-) ...
      ...and the Wombat...
         Then there are some famous birds, like the Emu...
        ...and the Kookaburra.
       What I know you 'didn't' know is that I've been in love with Australia for many, many years...long before this trip. I know when it started too! It was somewhere around the year I graduated High School. I came across the book The Thorn Birds. {It might have been a recommendation, after much conversation, from my beloved English teacher. I can't really remember, but that's likely.}
      I didn't read the book until around 1982 or '83. In fact, my then 'new' hubby and I used to read it to each other in the evenings for entertainment. :-] Then one night when we were just about to turn off the T.V. and  get ready to do our reading, a commercial preview came on for the mini-series!! It was gonna come on T.V.!! We were so excited...even though we were only about 3/4 of the way through the book at that point! We scheduled a 'speed-up' so we'd be finished with it before the mini-series started! LOL Ohhhh! Young people!!! ^_^
     I remember that from the very first episode, when I heard the music and saw the beautiful scenery, I was hooked!! :-] ... That was...what?...28 years ago!!!...and even though I wouldn't re-read the book now, or engross myself in it like I did then....I was OBSESSED!!!...I still love the music from the movie. LOVE it!!...I'm not even sure if there's anything 'Australian' about it really. It was a compilation by James Galway and Henry Mancini I think!...It almost has an Irish lilt to it to me...

    If you want to here music that 'is' native to Australia though, you can listen to the Didgeridoo being played HERE. :-)
      Something else I love about Australia is the attractions...the Melbourne Docklands...
      ...and the Sydney Opera House!! 
      I LOVE water!!! :-) So does long as he doesn't have to swim in any that he can't stand up in!! LOL
      And lastly....Yeah! It's coming to an end!... ^_^ ....And STOP CLAPPING!!! LOL...I love the food of Australia!...
          And seafood is a prominent staple food, due to Australia's long coastline. And I love myself some seafood!! {Hubby?!...Not so much. I told you about that allergic episode in Maine! O_O}
      I'd be lying if I didn't admit though, that some Australian foods puzzle me!...Well, it's not the food that puzzles me. It's the fact that people are eating it that puzzles me! ^_^ Like....Kangaroo meat...
       ...and Vegemite! O_0
       I mean...Vegemite is described this way: 'It's made from used brewers' yeast extract, a by-product of beer manufacturing, and various vegetable and spice additives, and it's salty, slightly bitter, and umami or malty – similar to beef bouillon.'...Uhhh....Breakfast food?! O_0 Kinda puzzling!
      I was gonna try to be an adventurous 'Date Night' participant and try some, but I didn't want to end the night in a queasy state. That's too long of a flight home to be queasy on before you get started!! LOL {That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!! ^_^}
      That's also the reason I'm gonna pass...this time...on Bushfood, or Bush Tucker as they call it...
      I don't know if my wimpy digestive system can take native Australian food. I think they may be a people of stronger countenance than me!! :-] I mean...I saw this lobster-ISH Balmain Bug and I got a little light-headed. LOL
       But hey! I'm 'good' with the Australian meat pie and fish and chips!! ^_^ And...
Did You Know...that the Granny Smith variety of apples first originated in Sydney!!!! :-)
        This is my favorite apple ever!!!! In fact, I'd give up apple pie making all together if I couldn't use Granny Smith apples to make them with!! :-) We've been old friends since I was a kid!!
      Yes! Australia....I love you!! And hubby does too!...We'll be back...definitely!!!! :-)

Going Out With My Baby

Going out with my baby.
Or going nowhere, but it's alright.
Playing games and constant laughing.
I think it's gonna be a great 'Date Night'!

Going out with my baby.
Or staying in, and hugging tight.
Eating all the things we shouldn't.
But smiling through every single bite!

Going out with my baby.
And visiting 'virtually' every sight.
All dressed up or in our jammies,
We're having fun. You know that's right!!


  1. Thanks Wugs, this was great! I thought I already knew a lot about Australia but I found out there was much more to learn.
    From a sports perspective, they sure have become a powerhouse in the Olympics!
    I hear you with the vegemite - beer barley spread for breakfast? yikes!

    Hope you kids had fun and enjoy your weekend. Lots of sports this weekend, College Football is back and my Grumpy Prince is very excited!


  2. I enjoyed MY virtual trip to Australia too! I can see you did as well. So interesting! We have friends that live in New South Wales. But I didn't know that much about the country.
    Thanks for sharing this and have a great rest of the weekend.

  3. Nice pictures. My youngest daughter spent a summer in Australia and just loved it. She said the kangaroos are a nuisance on the roads kinda like deer are here. And vegemite is really gross.
    But the country is beautiful and snorkling at the Great Barrier Reef was incredible. Hope you get to go for real.

  4. Lisa, I'm so glad you enjoyed visiting Australia with us!!! :-] I'm finding that...surprisingly...I'm enjoying taking all of you along with us to our destinations! ^_^ And, by the way, I find out every week that where I thought I knew a lot about certain places, I really don't know as much as I thought! It's kinda nice being more informed. It's making the whole world feel more like a neighborhood for us! :-)...But vegemite is never gonna be embraced completely. I can tell you that right now!!! LOL...Yes, I know LOTS of sports are on this weekend, but my heart belongs to tennis first, and then 'pro' football. I've never been a fan of college ball...none of them really (Until it's down to the sweet 16 of basketball I mean. :-))) {Maybe that's because I didn't go to college.}...But you and the grumpy prince ENJOY!!!! :-]

  5. CinLynn, Ohhhh, I'm so glad you enjoyed it!! I could have put some other VERY interesting info there too, about the spiritual friends we have there...but you would be among only a few followers of this blog that would be interested in that! :-) Besides, you have the statistics on that already in the YB!! That info makes me smile too!!...New South Wales has it's own interesting facts too! for instance that New South Wales has been the backdrop of many international films, including Mission: Impossible II (shot in Sydney)!...Have a good week my friend. And thanks for taking the trip with us! :-)

  6. Jansjems, I love hearing accounts of people who have gone to my 'virtual' places in real life!! I had heard that about the kangaroo. I also heard that they 'can' be a bit aggressive too. I don't wanna find that out in real life though! Ha! Ha! Thanks for sharing that with me. I hope one day I 'do' get to go and see the country first hand. For sure, now, I won't be in the dark about where I am! :-)...Have a good rest of the weekend!

  7. So many things I did not know....

  8. Priscila, Me too! :-)

  9. Vegemite is the best thing since sliced bread! I have it on toast and dip it into my coffee.mmmmm.... goood.... :)

    About the animals, yeah we DO have a lot of deadly things here. Small, but deadly.

    I think if you were to visit here you would find it the most friendliest, easy-going, beautiful place you've ever been. Not that I'm biased at all... ;)

  10. Alittlesprite, Ha! Ha! Ha! I wouldn't expect you to say anything else!! ^_^ But forgive me if I just take your word for it! LOL...And I have no doubt that if I visited there I 'would' find it the 'most friendliest, easy-going, beautiful place you've ever been'!!! :-) I hope one day I get to do just that!!!...And 'Good on ya' for taking up for your 'peeps', my 'Aussie' bloggie pal!!! :-)

  11. I am so glad you enjoyed your virtual holiday to my neck of the woods. I even learnt something from your post. I never knew that we were the 6th largest country. I love the Thorn-Birds mini-series too. Although I saw it on TV then read the book. I might have to dust off the book and read it again.

    That bit about the Kangaroo meat. I wont eat it. I tried it once but didn't like it. I hate to think I am eating one of Skippy's relatives. Did you know that we eat emu & camel too? Not that I do though.

    And that lovely stuff called vegemite! It is the BEST! We raise our babies on that stuff as soon as they can eat solids :D I know we may seem odd because of our love for that salty black spread but it really is delicious! Marmite & promite are similar products but don't taste as nice.

  12. Jo-anne, We did indeed enjoy our trip! :-) And I'm so excited that you learned something you didn't know...especially since you LIVE there!...You made me laugh about 'eating one of Skippy's relatives'! Ha! Ha! {My hubby 'cracked up laughing' because he had a dog when he was young named 'Skippy'!! ^_^} And...*gulp* eat emu and camel too?!!...*beads of sweat forming on my forehead*...Now I know for Aussies ARE made of stronger digestive stuff than me!!! LOL...And I don't care how many nice things you say about it, me and your children raising vegemite will never be friends! I can just tell from hearing what it's made of....sorry. O_0 {And that now includes Marmite and promite too...whatever they are!! LOL}...Have a good rest of the day Jo! :-]

  13. MMm vegimite we all grew up on it you know.But I have met a couple of Aussies who dont like it (weirdos) lol I dont get peanut butter and jelly sangas myself.Was great having you to visit tho maybe you will get here one day.BTW we dont see roos or snakes and poisenous spiders every day well not in all areas anyway.
    Roo meat its ok not my thing tho son likes it tho as its lean and he is a health freak.
    Hope you come to visit again one day.
    Check out Bundaberg In qld next time xx

  14. Nelly, Ha!Ha! I'm 'hearing' that you all grew up on Vegemite! How?!...I haven't a clue!! ^_^ One of these days I'm gonna blind-fold myself and try it. Who knows...I may like it! ^_^ In my youth I ate squirrel, rabbit, tripe (cow stomach lining), chitlings (pig intestines), Opossum, pigs feet, pig ears, and pig tails, and rattlesnake! You'd think I an adult...stomach some Vegemite!! LOL And my state in the south had black widow spiders and poisonous snakes too!..Roo meat?!...Nope! You can have that all to yourselves! ^_^ ...By the way, I did take a little peek in at Bundaberg. Looked like a nice neighborhood. :-) I can tell that the people are very friendly! ;-)

  15. If you get some vegimite PLEASE dont put it on thick lol I hear thats what Americans do when they 1st try it and thats whay it doesnt go down well.Just lightly spread over buttered toast or cracker.Only us that have been bought up on it can handle mega doses at once lol.
    Bundie is well known for its Rum we have lived here just on 2 years I can send you to a few other places I have lived in if you like

  16. Ha! Ha! Thanks for the tip on the vegemite! "If" I ever try it I'll remember that! {And you're not the first person to say that Americans can "put it on a little thick"!! LOL Yes...drama!! ^_^} Thanks for telling me your town's nickname and what special thing it's known for too. The rum thing wasn't in my info...By the way, I just found your blog. I left you a message. :-) Have a good day!


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