Far Away Australia Day

While I am sitting in a pub called The Australian Pub and BBQ and a big chubby bloke enters with an Asian girl. They both wear green-and-gold jerseys. The music is quite load although the band has just stopped or on their break. Some girls have Australian flag tattoos on their faces and some has the flag cape on. Most of the staff is girls and wearing green-and-gold cheerleader outfits.  There are only sports on TV monitors. There is a variety of beer on tap but the one you can call it Australian is Forster’s. However, there are bottles of Crown Lager, VB and Coopers on the tables.

Of course, I’m in an Australian-theme pub on Australia Day in Bangkok.

Why am I here, apart from having the first Coopers in weeks? I guess to see what is happening in the context of ex-pat national celebration like I did when I was back in Sydney.

This comes to the point that to realise how significant your identity is. This morning at work and could not share my yarn and thoughts on this nationalism (whether you are pro and con to this particular day) to anyone apart from friends on social media. My identity has been mashed up for a long time, maybe even before I moved to Australia nine years ago.

No, actually, one of the reasons I want remind myself of being an Australian when I heard the news that Don Ritchie was awarded as Australia’s Local Hero. He has saved many lives in a typical Australian way—inviting people who are about to jump off the cliff for a coffee at his place.

The understanding why and how he does it; and why and how he gets the honour gives me that identity.

And that is it!

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