The Good, the Bad and the Ugly News on Australia

Aussie is just next door to little ‘ol Nu Zillans, and occasionally we still make it across the Ditch.

We herein offer our Aussie vacation update:

Good News: I can still grow a totally stud-man goatee in a week.

Bad News: It’s now totally white and makes me look like Colonel Sanders’ Mini-Me.

Good News: Australia is an affluent country with a lot of shopping malls, including a Direct Factory Outlet in Melbourne that is only slightly smaller than Texas.

Bad News: Shopping malls are to Singaporeans (like my in-laws) what water is to fish. So we swam in them all. Which was, perhaps surprisingly, not all bad because…

Great News: … Australian malls have some absolutely outstanding mannequins. (Sorry we could not make the photo bigger).

Australians have GREAT Mannequins

Australians have GREAT Mannequins

Good News: They use Celsius Down Under, so it doesn’t sound that hot even during summer, which is now.

Bad News:
If you convert Celsius to Fahrenheit, you realize it’s about 117,000 degrees by 2pm.

Bad News2: And it’s ‘wet’ heat. So add in 12,000 percent humidity.

Good News: Melbourne has just under 17 million Chinese restaurants.

Bad News: We ate at them all. (WARNING: Do not attempt to stand between Chinese in-laws and their restaurants).

Good News: The Australian Open was being held while we were in Melbourne! And you didn’t really even need tickets! You could watch it on a BIG SCREEN TV while reclining on free seatbacks in the lovely open-air mall while quaffing a cold Aussie beer!

Bad News: To Singaporeans, Grand Slam Tennis pales in comparison to Chinese restaurants.

Ugly News: I am not that much fun to be around when deprived of the opportunity to drink beer while watching world class tennis and the occasional herd of blondes racing by on stilettos.

Good News: After Melbourne, we also went to The Gold Coast, which is world famous for its Surfers Paradise. But more importantly, it also has a CHINA TOWN!

Bad News: Filled with Chinese restaurants.

Bad News2: Plus also, the occasional Triad Killing.

Good & Bad News: No Triads killed us. But we visited China Town. To eat more Chinese food. On a day when the mercury hit, and we are making a conservative guess here, approximately 900 billion degrees. (Traveler’s note: How do you say: “Lawsy, Lawsy, Lawsy” in Mandarin?”)

Good News:
Although almost everything in Australia can kill and eat you, we were only attacked by wild herds of Chinese waiters.

Bad News:
Yesterday, on our way to the airport, this native Australian “fauna” (photo below) thought we were his Chinese take-away food. The killer reptile was at least 9 feet long and tried to peel the van open and eat us.

Chinese-eating lizard, 1/1,000th scale

Good News: Because we only ate actual food (as defined by “having no eyes that look at you, and not involving rice or noodles or chop sticks”) once over the eight days, and that was low-fat Italian, which I dunked my entire head in, I almost certainly added less vacation fat than what’s contained in your average Australian *hippo.

Bad News: Which are about the size of Oprah.

Good News: The Gold Coast is home to many theme parks including Warner Brothers’ Movie World.

Bad News:
While we were there, two staff members with the collective I.Q. of the mannequin and the Chinese-eating lizard (above) decided to be stupid, rude, and oozing bad P.R., not to mention Australian body odor, which we will not mention, except to say, P.U.

Ugly News:
They got their big girl pantaloons in a knot because I have an artificial arm which, apparently, might fling off at any moment, derail their Scooby Doo roller coaster and kill thousands of visitors. Millions even. Seems they have policies about these things requiring paper security tags and prior approvals. (Heartfelt message to the CEO of Australian Warner Brothers: If you ever visit Auckland, please stop by and I’ll show you where I plan to stick my artificial arm next time I visit your theme park.)

Super Good News: Although this is NOT Good/Bad/Ugly Australian news, we are thrilled to report that Monday Waitangi Day, a NZ national holiday, and Super Bowl Sunday magically happen at the same time this year.

So Junior and I will gather at the nearby pub to lift a beer, watch the game, and be loud Americans. It will be great.

Cheers ya’ll.

* We KNOW that Australia does NOT have hippos. Lions ate them all. Or possibly the Chinese.

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