Australian Rules Football is the most popular sport in Australia. At least, it is if you judge by people watching sport on TV, people attending matches and internet search terms.
To play, basically you have to catch the ball which is called taking a ‘mark’.
Then you need to kick it, or handpass it to your teammates to get it near your team’s goal.
When you are close enough, you kick it between the goal posts. Getting the ball through the tall, middle posts scores 6 points. Kicking it through the smaller side posts scores 1 point.
Watching a game is very exciting once you understand what is happening! Games take 80 minutes (4 x 20 minute quarters with short breaks in between) and there are 18 players on the field for each team at a time.
I spent last week down south in Melbourne, Victoria. I was there on the 21st of June which is the winter solstice and the shortest day of the year.
It was 6-16°C and rained most of the time: Winter is here!
Not on the Sunshine Coast though…
It was 16-26°C with clear skies. Time for swimming and surfing!
Or, a nice walk in the park wearing shorts and a T-shirt.
I took a short trip to the southern part of the Sunshine Coast: beautiful Caloundra. They have a famous street market there on Sundays.
If you like Ginger Beer, then this guys says he makes the best in the World! I was hankering for a coffee though, so I passed this time.
I found out that there are 17 Sunday markets in the Sunshine Coast area! These handicrafts were on display at the Cotten Tree market which is only 5 minutes walk along the beach from my house.
I have been seeing a lot of bush turkeys around lately. They don’t live down south in Victoria where I grew up, so watching them scurrying about is quite novel for me.
I often see them at parks, near the beach and even walking between and under the tables at street cafes!
There are also lots of banksia trees here. Unlike bush turkeys, they are very common in Victoria too.
Growing up, we always called them ‘bottlebrush’ trees. The two pictures are actually of different species (Banksia coccinea and Banksia integrifolia).
There are even more cafes in Australia than I remember and the coffee just keeps getting better!
Brekky (breakfast) Wraps are very popular these days.
Nearly all coffee is made by baristas. Some of them are so popular they have become minor celebrities!
I finally had an Australian pizza. They taste amazing but are definitely not diet food.
There is a beautiful little mountain on the Sunshine Coast called ‘Mount Coolum’.
My brother and I went hiking there last week.
The view from the top was amazing!
I have finally made it back to Australia after almost 6 years away (without visiting!). I am glad to be home, but I will miss Japan.
The good news: While I was away, my parents moved from Bendigo in Victoria to sunny Queensland: into a beach resort apartment!
The bad news: I had only been on the beautiful Sunshine Coast a few days when Cyclone Debbie hit…
My town was mostly OK, but other places were not so lucky.
There are only 4 days to go until I get on a plane and fly back to Australia! I haven’t been back for almost 6 years. I’m getting a little nervous…
One of my teachers gave me this cake as a going away present. Yum!
English Tip: The packet says it’s ‘Jamaica’ rum cake, but it should be written as ‘Jamaican‘ (It was made by a German company).