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Questions to the Australians here.


Mac_Maddog88
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Hey,


I've always wanted to go to Aus, maybe even live there some day. I just have a few questions regarding your daily life,


 


Is it true that comming across snakes and spiders and things that can kill you every day is a common occurrence? I don't know if it's just something the internet has turned into a joke, but I can;t read about Australia somewhere online without somebody talking about/ posting a meme of how everything in Australia can kill you.


 


How is the internet? Is it true it's run by a huge monopoly? Would I have to pay twice or more times the price I pay in the US for good internet?


 


Is the government's control on the media and banning games /  movies with violence, blood, and gore, all the stuff, is the government really that restrictive? Or is it just the internet making things out worse than they are? Silly question, but would I be able to have games in Australia like Fallout or Skyrim that have really excessive violence in them?


 


Is the Outback really that empty and just full of what I hear you all call "wankers" or "bloody bogans"? Or is it just like rural America in a sense, scarcely populated but at least populated somewhat?


 


Are prices on stuff really that high? I hear Australians mainly on reddit complaining about how lucky we Americans had it, as their prices for PC parts in Australia looked to be a whole lot more than what I payed here!


 


In America, we have Outback Steakhouse. If you guys don't know what that is, it's a sit-down place that looks all Australian inside, has commercials with an Australian guy, that kind of stuff. I don't imagine their food is representative at all of your cuisine, so what kind of food do you guys have? Do you eat Kangaroos, or eat a ton of seafood?


 


What kinds of colleges can one go to for aviation? What kind of opportunities are there for careers?


 


And lastly, what is the most beautiful place to live there?


 


Thanks,


-Mac


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Hi Mac,


 


You know we Australians love it when people leave the door wide open (never let the truth and humor get in the way of a good story).  


We love nothing more than to tell tourists the biggest stories, Paul Hogan style (Crocodile Dundee and his mates Wally & Donk).


 


I don't ride a motorcycle or drive a car, I have a personal Red Kangaroo (15ft tall), that gets great Mpg's and is not too bad when there's a fight, I keep my wallet and keys & sunglasses in the pouch, the joey looks after them. Most Aussies have a daily kangaroo for leaving at the train station on work days, and a sporty one for the weekend.


 



 


Is it true that comming across snakes and spiders and things that can kill you every day is a common occurrence? I don't know if it's just something the internet has turned into a joke, but I can;t read about Australia somewhere online without somebody talking about/ posting a meme of how everything in Australia can kill you.



We have the deadliest snakes and spiders in the world, our shores and rivers are patrolled by man-eating crocodiles and sharks. They don't eat the locals though.


 



 


How is the internet? Is it true it's run by a huge monopoly? Would I have to pay twice or more times the price I pay in the US for good internet?



How is the internet? "Blinking awful" Our internet is one of the worst copper networks in the world, our Governments want to bring us into the 19th century before 2017, (hows that for forward planning), I believe with technology that the rest of the world will long since have disposed to the recycling bin.


As example, I can only get a 1.5Mb/sec download speed on my area and Upload speed 256Kb/sec, in actuality its more like 160Kb/sec Down & 55Kb/sec Up. Some have Highspeed BB but that is in the larger City Centers close to the exchange.


Its a case of not getting the delivery that was quoted in the brochure.


There are many ISP's but unless you go strictly wireless or cable to obtain higher speed what is termed ADSL2+ which is still not the 1:1 ratio in other countries, US, EU, England, GER, and so on, then the only provider supplying/controlling the copper network afaik on the East coast is the Telstra Monopoly. All connected ISP's lease/rent access to this network. Don't really know much about pricing comparisons.


 



 


Is the government's control on the media and banning games /  movies with violence, blood, and gore, all the stuff, is the government really that restrictive? Or is it just the internet making things out worse than they are? Silly question, but would I be able to have games in Australia like Fallout or Skyrim that have really excessive violence in them?



There were a few ministers in the former government who wanted to tighten down on some of the less attractive aspects of, internet service delivery and content searches. Not sure how far this idea has progressed, but they do want ISP's to retain all data traffic for up to 5years (and who knows who or if, will decide what is kept or disposed). We have our classification agencies like everywhere else, I believe they aren't that serious with regard to game classification until someone complains loud enough for them to see through the beurocracy, and then they remove the item from sale or force the maker to mod out the offensive content. 


 


Some of the plan was really needed because of the gross negative aspects of the WWW. The implementation and classification of such had its detractors, because limiting huge sections of the internet based on a single wordsearch or banned site could also prevent useful internet activity, and attract unwarranted attention from authorities, even though innocently searching and surfing was involved. All people in western countries have their shadow watched more and more these days, shadowy men and women unplugged from the charging station every morning and off they go pretending to be looking out for our safety, look for the (fake/webbed) hands they haven't perfected those yet.


  


I don't think your US games will work here (Region locked) but most of these titles are freely available on other platforms.


 


 



 


Is the Outback really that empty and just full of what I hear you all call "wankers" or "bloody bogans"? Or is it just like rural America in a sense, scarcely populated but at least populated somewhat?



 


We Aussies clamber around the coastal regions mostly, because that's where we keep our surfboards. LOL


Just kidding, from the very beginning of our modern settlement on this massive Island Continent, the almost impenetrable ruggedness of the interior had us coast bound and that is mostly how it stayed, until some brave explorers ventured inland, only to return or not, with stories of just how desolate and barren it is beyond the coastal ranges (They were expecting something more like Europe). The original inhabitants had lived there for thousands of years and knew how to make the most of this dry interior land.


 


It wasn't that long ago that we in our 200yr history saw the opportunity and beauty of the Outback. Now there are huge mines and farming properties the size of some entire countries, there cities towns randomly distributed according to the local industry. Our road system is not


layed on a grid like the "US" it is more dependent on topography and whatever is cheapest and easiest to build. 


 


Our character and nature are fairly informal and relaxed (we have a colloquial language and love a good joke), people are just people, good bad and ugly anywhere in the world, but if you had the chance to talk with some of our outback heroes you would be pleasantly surprised by their humor and straight talking nature. (Mates) 


 



 


Are prices on stuff really that high? I hear Australians mainly on reddit complaining about how lucky we Americans had it, as their prices for PC parts in Australia looked to be a whole lot more than what I payed here!



 


Oh yeah! We don't fair so well on most things imported. PC parts are probably 30-50% higher,  when our dollar is strong the prices are still high for overseas Web purchases, I call it the OS Aussie tax, the importers can't explain why the discrepancy exists and our toothless regulators can't/won't enforce the foreign exchange rate with regards to imports.


 



 


In America, we have Outback Steakhouse. If you guys don't know what that is, it's a sit-down place that looks all Australian inside, has commercials with an Australian guy, that kind of stuff. I don't imagine their food is representative at all of your cuisine, so what kind of food do you guys have? Do you eat Kangaroos, or eat a ton of seafood?



  


You gave us McDonalds, Thanks! (Not)!!! - You know its a drive through place no time to sit, except in your own car chugging down shakes and burgers these days, a plastic environment that looks like a restaurant, where children assemble & serve cardboard looking substances as food for human beings - I prefer to BBQ steak, snags, seafood and chicken at home, not sure what others do these days as so few can cook. 


 



What kinds of colleges can one go to for aviation? What kind of opportunities are there for careers?


 



 


Plenty of places to find higher education, too many and varied to list, some of the best academic colleges and UNI's in the world,  but bring your money with you they are charging for everything these days ( no free lunch now )


 



 


And lastly, what is the most beautiful place to live there?



 


My Place but I' biased - I like the beach and live on the Mid north Coast of NSW, but I guess it depends what you like doing we are spoiled for choice. We don't really have any ugly spoiled places for now, given our population only topping  m 23,000000 it has an un-cluttered look, not beaten down by history.


 


 


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Wow, I cannot even say how interesting and fun that was to read!


You said you guys have 30-50% higher price on PCparts, do you all ever leave the country to go and buy stuff for cheaper? I know Canadians will come into the States, purchase stuff for cheap, and then smuggle it back over in their cars to not pay duty.


 


And trust me, I feel the same way about McDonalds, most Americans do. Back when i was young, I loved going there and it was a fun thing, these days it's just like you go there for a burger and feel ashamed 1000 calories later! What other kinds of food do you all have? Do you have Italian or Mexican places like we do in the US?


 


I actually get to visit Aus next year. the band I'm in was invited to play at Sydney, so i'm looking forward to that!

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Hi Mac,


 


As you can see I'm still up and its 5:40ish am,  here in Aussie.


 


Being so far from anywhere else in the world has its advantages and disadvantages (We share no international borders) so when it comes to hopping over somewhere for cheaper goods, or to buy something duty free, then unless its small and on a holiday usually not much chance sneaking it through or paying for a expensive plane trip just to buy something cheaper. We do however have a growing Asian offshore medical/surgical industry, where things get enlarged or removed or replaced for a lower budget price. (Not sure I would do that though)


 


We are a multicultural society, gathering the very best from around the world, so you name it and someone probably is cooking it. If I go out to a restaurant the choices are endless, but I prefer Italian food. Cooking programs have ruled our TV sets for a few years now so every one is a pretender Gourmet cook, its funny to watch reality and imagined skill collide in a TV kitchen but then there are a few success stories.


 


So when the band arrives in Sydney Kingsford Smith or Mascot as it is known locally, what colour Kangaroo do you want to ride to the hotel. Do you want a feisty red one one or something a little more sedate in a Wallaby or Eastern Grey.


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Hi


 


Our Internet is around 40 - 44 th ranked in the world. There's fibre optic broadband happening which will greatly improve things. The thing is, we have a very large country and not many people, its like the cost of maintaining roads, its high.


 


You can see snakes regularly out in the bush in the right weather conditions, but most of the time, it takes effort to see a snake and most snakes try to  avoid humans. Snakes dont hunt humans, but the big ones will hunt things like kangaroos. We have very deadly snakes. Spiders are common, red backs and so on.


 


The Government doesnt do much regulation and were a pretty free society. One issue is guns, Im a gun owner and enthusiast, our gun laws are much stricter than the USA. General society tends to be OK with fishing (though thats regulated now too and involves licenses etc) but when it comes to hunting, its not as common and many are afraid of even seeing guns and dont like the idea of hunting. Strange, kill and eat a fish thats ok, kill and eat a deer, you just shot and ate bamby!!! LOL Country folk tend to be OK about guns and hunting. This is one wider issue politically, country people are feeling increasingly marginalised by city living trendies with a green bent politically, introducing or trying to introduce green bent laws that work OK if you an inner city yuppy sipping lattes in a french cafe by the roadside, but dont work beyond the mindset into practical living. Due to unfairness in international trade, most farmers do poorly financially as other countries have protection mechanisms and schemes to prop them up, case in the point, the so called free trade agreement with the USA, where for aussie beef farmers itsnt anything but free trade and its all about American beef farmers getting the better deal. The mining boom is over, so mostly in the country, its pretty much full of battlers financially, with the rare occasion of wealthy families running large farming enterprises, like wineries, studs and so on.


 


You can now get R rated computer games. You can buy stuff like pornography and so on legally. Drugs are illegal, like cannibas, heroin and cocaine, alcohol is legal if your over 18. Aussies then to view "drugs" as only for "druggies", but will often tell you so at the pub while sucking on a fag (a cigarette not a homo!) and drinking a beer. Beers come in schooners and middies mostly, though some trendy yuppy pubs serve pints. Always cold, again, unless its a trendy type pub. Apart from fags, smoking is also commonly referred to as "durry munching". "ive got me durries mate, wheres the pissup at?" Meaning, got my smokes, where are we going to drink? Nicotine is obviously legal, but theres a big push to stop people taking nicotine, but you still can legally. Prostitution is legal mostly for brothels I think, but not in the street its not a subject I know about! Gambling is legal, but I think like prostitution its only legal in some areas and stuff, again I dont know much about gambling as I dont do it. Its rare that media is totally refused classification in Australia and is refused entry. It used to happen with games, but not anymore much. You can carry kinves around as long as its for recreational reasons or food prep or others, but you cant wield knives legally and there is restrictions on the type of knife. In most country pubs, no one would think twice of a man with say a leather knife holder with say a 4" single sided blade, often you see that, and another leather pocket for their multi tool, like a leatherman. I always carry a knife in my vehicle, Ive had cops ask me twice about it in twenty years of driving, and I just say, I use it for both fishing and hunting, plus I use it for cutting my apple. Cops are generally good, they know the law, and they wont hassle respectful law abiding people. I've been pulled over from RBT's (random breath test which reminds me our limits are less than yours were under 0.05 BAC nationally) with guns in the car for going shooting, and I just simply say, Im a registered gun owner and Im conveying firearms in my vehicle. The cops just check the licence and sometimes theyll want to see the guns, but its all routine to them.


 


The outback stretches for as far as you can see, usually its very flat too, and hot. You can go days without seeing anyone. In fact its so isolated, on some 4wd trails, you have to helicopter in drums of fuel otherwise youd get stranded and suffer a very pricey recovery to fix it. Great people are generally in the outback, Id say theres more bogans in the city areas and more pretender wankers there, than the bush folk. Ive crossed our simpson desert in 4WD, we have awesome land for 4WD. The outback can get so remote that children goto school via radio classes, and getting to town requires a plane or a day trip. Often the "homesteads" in the true outback act as little towns, were you can buy food and fuel and so on, but its not a town, just a farm homestead.


 


Many city folk never go outback and never really see Australia


 


Speaking of the divide between country and city people in Australia heres an example. I'm driving along past Dubbo on my way to Broken Hill:


 


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dubbo


 


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broken_Hill,_New_South_Wales


 


And theres a lamb that came springing up and smashed into my bullbar on the 4WD. Most outback drivers know not to swerve or panic break. So I pull over after coming to a controlled stop, and my mate says "awww yeah thats a lamb. Im gettin it for me dogs!!" And I say "stuff that, lets eat it at camp tonight!" Slow roasted lamb in a dutch oven over a fire while camping is just brilliant. So we both walk back to the now dead lamb and start butchering it to get it nice and cold as soon as possible for tonight. A car pulls up with city people, the wife looks like she wants to stab us, their children are all crying in the back and carrying on. Me being a bit sick of this city attitude I walk up with my bloody hands to the Driver and say "whats the problem mate?" He shaked his head and drives off, now thats a wanker to use Australian lingo! Its common to give road kill to dogs and the like, say a kangaroo that hit a bullbar. Generally with livestock its a problem when they get hit on the road, but in this case it wasnt worth finding the "cocky" -the farmer to tell him, since its just a lamb and they tend to sometimes loose the flock and wander and die. Most sheep farms are massive, having almost countless sheep.  Since my mate is a man of sheer brilliance he also suggested we "hang" the meat via the roof rack to season it while travelling to camp. A few days of hanging would have been better, but it was dam delicious all the same that night especially after some "sherberts" - aussie slang for a beer


 


Prices tend to be high in Australia. This is changing with online commerce. Its loosely called the "aussie tax"


 


Seafood is common. Kangaroo meat is a bit niche but popular enough supermarkets have it. Its healthy meat. Crocodile is pretty good too, we have croc burgers and the like for tourists. Emu is awful, had that once, kinda like bacon gone wrong never again. Since the end of the white Australia policy where we were all basically British in our culture and meals, now with multi cultural-ism it could be Italian, French, Chinese, Japanese you know it for dinner, and the restuarants all cater for all likes of food in cities. Under multi cultural-ism we have certain areas in certain cities thats become popular for certain cultures, like lots of Chinese or Macedonian shops in one area where many of them live. In the outback you dont tend to see many of different ethnicity to either Australian Aboriginal or British/Scottish/etc White Kinda Aussie. If you do, typically their tourists/backpackers from Asia, from Europe etcetc.


 


Youll get allof of opinions on the most beautiful place. For me, tropical living is nice for awhile but the tropics have its own set of health issues and so on, plus in the tropics in the ocean you have more nasties than down south. I like Tasmania, huge open expanses, big mountains, pristine bush with crystal clear water, perfect fresh seafood.....However at the same time, a place like "Camerons Corner" is magic too, did it once for New Years Eve and due to timezone differences, was able to do it multiple times by steeping around the borders of Queensland, South Australia, New South Wales.


 


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cameron_Corner


 


If I had billions, I'd probably buy my own little island around Tassie somewhere, and build a complex on the island for myself and family. With ofcourse, a bush airfield!


 


Im happy to answer any further questions youve got. Because of my interest in 4WDing, Ive seen more of this land than most.


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Great topic. And great responses.


 


I'm Dutch, moved to AU (Melbourne) in 1999 after living in New Zealand for less than a year only (unfortunately - I'd have loved to stay longer), then moved to Brisbane a few years later. I have lived in Europe, South America and the Caribbean as well and have travelled to over 60 countries, but Australia is a fantastic place to live. I don't understand all the Aussies that go and live in the UK for a few years!


 


I love seeing snakes in the wild, which happens maybe 4 times per year where I live (mostly pythons and tree snakes). I only saw my first venomous snake in the wild this December, and I was very excited! We've got (Huntsman) spiders larger than my hand inside the house, especially when it rains like this week. I hate those - and there's one in the room next to me right now. I know it's harmless but still...


 


Internet compared to Europe is expensive and slow. I live in a (relatively) big city and the connection to my ISP is OK (10 MB/s over cable) so access to most Australian sites is good, but the pipes to the rest of the world are just too slow, especially to Europe which admittedly is on the other side of the globe.


 


And yes it's bloody expensive - but I think the incomes are somewhat higher too (?)


 


Aussies are OK, and you don't have to remember their names, as you can get away with calling everyone Mate (even women).


 



Cheers


Remko


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Only really dangerous spider you have to worry about is the Sydney Funnel web. Was sitting at my pc one day. saw what I thought was a large bug on the floor. Turned out to be a female funnel web with a back fill of kids. SHe chased me up the kitchen floor while I went to get the bug spray. Ended up chucking a bowl over her which is when I discovered the bubs. like a black oil spill pouring out over the floor. Had to give floor a good spray to make sure i got them all, than a vacum. That was scary.Oh and Tassies got some big snakes.


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Only really dangerous spider you have to worry about is the Sydney Funnel web. Was sitting at my pc one day. saw what I thought was a large bug on the floor. Turned out to be a female funnel web with a back fill of kids. SHe chased me up the kitchen floor while I went to get the bug spray. Ended up chucking a bowl over her which is when I discovered the bubs. like a black oil spill pouring out over the floor. Had to give floor a good spray to make sure i got them all, than a vacum. That was scary.Oh and Tassies got some big snakes.

You can get them in your house? Damn! Is that something that's a common concern in Aus? I'd hate to be sitting there at my PC and then just get bit by one of those things and die!

 

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We get plenty of huntsmen in the house, but they eat funnelwebs and mosquitoes so all good, as we live in the Blue Mountains NSW which is the home of the funnelweb we get lots living in the lawns around the house, we have to keep the grass very short to be able to spot the funnelwebs and snakes (get a few of those..browns..red-belly-blacks, pythons etc)


 


All worth it though to live 10mins walk from this:


UKzQhpv.jpg


 


 


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Had a friend living in the country near Orange (west of the great dividing range from Sydney). Every year she had to have the lino in the kitchen replaced because of the spade marks. True, I am not making this up. (snakes search for water / food in dry conditions / drought and guess what's in the kitchen).


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Personally I prefer shooting snakes than going into melee range with a spade :) I usually try to shoo them away ofcourse, but sometimes they just wont take a hint and they go into combat mode. I like shotguns for the task cos you can load with rat shot, and that doesnt damage things much at all. Thats one of the great things with shotguns, you can go from something like rat shot, to bird shot, to buck shot, to even slugs all with the same barrel just different ammo. I once tested rat shot against some old gyprock sheeting to see what it would do, and you could easily paint over the mark from it without filler, much less damage than a spade or baseball bat. Most snake bites are caused by either getting totally surprised by a snake by not seeing it and being real close and the snake lashes out often in self defence, or people being stupid and playing with them. In my experience usually snakes will try to get away, but sometimes no matter what you do theyll go into combat mode and become very stubborn.


 


My wife goes into hysterics about spiders. I once had a big mark on below my belly button, that got worse and worse. I went to the Dr., and I was diagnosed that a white tailed spider bit me in my sleep, and I developed a necrotic lesion from the bite. Apparently they come onto you looking for warmth and wetness, and when you move, they bite. It was worse than it sounds and healed up ok.


 


Managing spiders in Aus is just common sense. If you go camping, dont leave your shoes out overninght. Dont leave your sleeping bag out in the open undone. Dont allow opportunities for spiders and snakes to get into stuff.


 


People go crawling around in the bush all the time, in the mud, in the sand, its not a major issue. Its like crocs up north, just dont go camping by the edge of the water when crocs are known to be there. From time to time a croc will kill someone, but its pretty rare. Same with sharks at beaches, its pretty rare.


 


Most Aussies are kind and polite. There is some hassles with say alcohol fuelled violence in clubs and pubs, sometimes the native australians are a particular problem in the more remote towns. That said Ive met some great humans who are native australians. Its just common sense, your guard might be up a bit on Friday night in an unknown rowdy pub until you get to know the people, you might leave someone in the car if a group of Aboriginals start taking a big interest in your 4WD while your going shopping. In cities there is a big push for political correctness, but in the bush or the outback, most white aussies will be wary of natives until they learn they can be trusted, Its not a racist thing, its just born of experience. Some native towns where the whole town is run by native australians, those can be really great to visit. Usually you cant bring alcohol into those places its banned, they obey National laws but they tend to have their own set of native australian laws too. They will expect you not to come into town with any grog, most people will stash it in the bush and go in to get their supplies if they travelling through. I've had some wonderful times in Aboriginal towns, and it was great to see them making a go in modern society.


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Hey Outrage, give your band a plug...what's it's name, genre and when will you be here? oh, and by the way, I hope you can sort out the "bullshiser" from the "dinkum".

My band is a wind ensemble "CYWE" (Cincinnati Youth Wind Ensemble). We play lots of stuff, going from classical to folk to modern. We're going to be in Sydney next year (They like to plan really far ahead). Given the fact we're in Sydney I doubt I'll be able to see the outback or anything :(

 

If you want an example of some of the stuff we're playing, look up Lincolnshire Posy (Collection of 6 British folk songs), Festive Overture (Classical sort of piece about Russian Revolution), or British Folk Song Suite (More British stuff). We play lots of British music!

 

 

We get plenty of huntsmen in the house, but they eat funnelwebs and mosquitoes so all good, as we live in the Blue Mountains NSW which is the home of the funnelweb we get lots living in the lawns around the house, we have to keep the grass very short to be able to spot the funnelwebs and snakes (get a few of those..browns..red-belly-blacks, pythons etc)

 

All worth it though to live 10mins walk from this:

 

That's so cool how you can just walk to that from your house. The most I can walk to McDonald's or something!  :

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don't forget if you come to aussie land from the US , we drive on the wrong side of the road!


and we don't have the cable tv services like you guys over there do, like 400 thousand channels with nothing on!!


 


oh and our weather can be nuts ,it is really like 4 season in one day, from bloody hot to bloody cold and wet...


our summer hot days can get up to 47 degrees celsius !


but no matter how far or how wide I roam , I still call Australia Home!!! 


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don't forget if you come to aussie land from the US , we drive on the wrong side of the road!

and we don't have the cable tv services like you guys over there do, like 400 thousand channels with nothing on!!

 

oh and our weather can be nuts ,it is really like 4 season in one day, from bloody hot to bloody cold and wet...

our summer hot days can get up to 47 degrees celsius !

but no matter how far or how wide I roam , I still call Australia Home!!! 

I normally just stream movies and TV shows and watch the occasional program or news on my TV. In America, we literally have like you said, 4000+ channels, but you barely get 100 with just a basic plan! And out of those 100, 25-50 have programs worth even looking at for a second! 

Whenever I bring this up around older people, they just go all, "Oh, back in my day we had 2 channels, the local news, and PBS. And we only had cartoons in the morning on Saturdays." 

 

What kind of TV do people get in the outback? Basic cable if they're lucky?

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I normally just stream movies and TV shows and watch the occasional program or news on my TV. In America, we literally have like you said, 4000+ channels, but you barely get 100 with just a basic plan! And out of those 100, 25-50 have programs worth even looking at for a second! 

Whenever I bring this up around older people, they just go all, "Oh, back in my day we had 2 channels, the local news, and PBS. And we only had cartoons in the morning on Saturdays." 

 

What kind of TV do people get in the outback? Basic cable if they're lucky?

 

 

 

 

forget about streaming unless you got high speed cable !

and in the outback its mostly satellite tv ,which is what  my uncle had on his 5000 acre property.. 

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