Thursday, 13 September 2012

ANIMALS:  We've all heard the horror stories about sharks, funnel-web spiders, the blueringed octopus and the positively terrifying box jellyfish, but the reality is much different. Every morning I am woken by kookaburas calling and go downstairs to see birds of paradise flaunting their beautiful feathers as they fly past my kitchen. And then, if we have time, we can walk down to the beach to watch the dolphins revelling their way  through the ocean. We have also seen kangeroos in the Bush, and recently a koala literally hanging around in a tree. The most unpleasant animal experience I have is with the flies that so assiduously harass me in the office foyer whenever I am waiting for the Lift. I concede that it will only take one confirmed shark-sighting or an over-developed arachnoid for this to change, but for the time-being, this is a Positive.


MONEY:  Now, here I do have a problem: there isn't enough of it to go round. The commentators say that the national economy is balanced on a knife edge. My personal finances are teetering on the head of a sheered needle, and I so often feel as if the Aussies have conspired to find ingenious new ways to make me pay. A classic example is their Health System, where there really is little alternative to private insurance. The effects of this, for me, are twofold. First of all, I lay awake at night, imagining ailments, in order to get my money's worth from the extortionate scheme that I have had to join. And next, it makes me so appreciative of the wonders of the British NHS.

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