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article imageOp-Ed: Tropical Christmas; reindeer and palm trees

By Richard van der Draay     Dec 28, 2008 in Lifestyle
A few exciting months ago I relocated from the United Kingdom to sunny Sydney in Australia. Things are working out quite well so far.
I’m settling in nicely and am enjoying getting to know the place. It’s a truly stunning city with its amazing harbour setting. The quality of life as I perceive it was one of the reasons I decided to come here.
Culturally, it is a fascinating place with many influences and a large number of diverse immigrant communities. Of course, there is the British and Irish element to life and the origins of this new country, the much older presence of the Indigenous culture, Italian, Croatian and other groups as well as a large Asian influx. The place feels truly cosmopolitan and on the whole it seems to work remarkably well.
However, my first Aussie Christmas was a daunting prospect with temperatures in the thirties and bright blue skies aplenty. After all, I did grow up in the Northern Hemisphere where the snowy imagery of winter and Christmas make sense to some degree.
I’d read how many Aussies these days take to the beach for a barbie rather than a full on roast turkey dinner with all the trimmings. That type of hearty winter food, although thoroughly enjoyable, seems starkly out of place in an Australian summer.
In the end I booked a table at a really nice restaurant where I had a gorgeous non-turkey Christmas lunch. Later in the afternoon I spent some time sitting in a friend’s back garden, enjoying a few drinks and some good company.
It turned out to be very relaxed and laid-back. A typical Aussie Christmas after all then.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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