jasonlockwood

Times may be tough, but....

25 posts in this topic

In another thread, there is talk of the current financial mess and the toll it takes on us all.

To lighten everyone's spirit a bit, I have some wonderful personal news: I took possession of my fabulous British Racing Green Mini Cooper this afternoon. It's my very first right side drive car, which is exciting to me. Also, it rounds out my transition to life in Australia. The biggies have been:

1) Get established in my new job: done!

2) Open bank account and get credit card: done!

3) Find a nice place to live: done!

4) Furnish the apartment: 85% done!

5) Get a car: done!

6) Take a road trip with the new car: I leave tomorrow after work for the Hunter Valley, which is about a 90-minute drive from Sydney. The Hunter is one of the wine regions of Australia and I went once before in 2006 and had a great time.

I take Betsy's advice very seriously when she says enjoy your own values to the greatest degree possible. That's what brought me to Australia in the first place and so far I have not one regret.

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Congratulations! I hope the Aussies are treating you well. My experience is that they can sometimes be tough on Americans out of jelousy. :)

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Wow. Congratulations Jason! That all sounds great.

I can relate to the 85% furnishing of an apartment. It is three years since I moved and I am still at the 85% point!

On the Hunter Valley -- I am jealous! I love Australian wine. What are your favorite vineyards there? Anything that we should be on the lookout here in the US?

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Good for you enjoying yourself Jason. Let me know when you head up North to Queensland. And remember, keep left (road, not politics) :)

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When I was in Japan I had to take an "International Driving Course" before I could drive. I do not remember exactly when I took it as I went to the field as soon as I got to Japan. But, I remember it lasting about a week and the instructor kept repeating what Arnold stated in his post, "keep left." I guess a large amount of the accidents by Americans were caused by pulling out onto the wrong side of the road and hitting another car head-on. I did not get in a single accident while over there. Unfortunately I did not have a Mini Cooper, I had a Toyota Camry. The only two American cars I saw on Okinawa were a Ford Festiva and the Corvette.

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When I was in Japan I had to take an "International Driving Course" before I could drive. I do not remember exactly when I took it as I went to the field as soon as I got to Japan. But, I remember it lasting about a week and the instructor kept repeating what Arnold stated in his post, "keep left." I guess a large amount of the accidents by Americans were caused by pulling out onto the wrong side of the road and hitting another car head-on. I did not get in a single accident while over there. Unfortunately I did not have a Mini Cooper, I had a Toyota Camry. The only two American cars I saw on Okinawa were a Ford Festiva and the Corvette.

Americans forgetting to drive on the left has been a big problem in my state. We got a tourist road called "The Great Ocean Road" which has absolutely fantastic views. But due to all the bends around the cliffs, visibility in places can be poor, so a lot of accidents have been caused by American tourists driving on the right, Australians driving on the left, and then they meet head on around a sharp bend.

As a result, the government has stuck up these signs absolutely everywhere.

20061129-1-drive-left-on-great-ocean-road.jpg

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In another thread, there is talk of the current financial mess and the toll it takes on us all.

To lighten everyone's spirit a bit, I have some wonderful personal news: I took possession of my fabulous British Racing Green Mini Cooper this afternoon. It's my very first right side drive car, which is exciting to me. Also, it rounds out my transition to life in Australia. The biggies have been:

[...]

I take Betsy's advice very seriously when she says enjoy your own values to the greatest degree possible. That's what brought me to Australia in the first place and so far I have not one regret.

To borrow a line from General Zod in Superman II, "Jason Lockwood, ruler of Australia, activate the device!" :)

A new car, a new pad, a winery - beautiful sun and lovely breeze - I'm envious, mate. :)

Congratulations!

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No worries on the left hand driving - I was accustomed to it before I got my car. The only issue is finding my way around. So far, no major problems with that.

All in all, things are going famously down here. A life worth envying, in other words. :)

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Glad things are looking up down under.

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Congratulations! I hope the Aussies are treating you well. My experience is that they can sometimes be tough on Americans out of jelousy. :)

I haven't found this at all. Australians are very friendly in general and often curious to hear my opinions on the upcoming election and other things American. Occasionally I get a bit of lefty nonsense, but it's not very rabid.

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When I was in Japan I had to take an "International Driving Course" before I could drive. I do not remember exactly when I took it as I went to the field as soon as I got to Japan. But, I remember it lasting about a week and the instructor kept repeating what Arnold stated in his post, "keep left." I guess a large amount of the accidents by Americans were caused by pulling out onto the wrong side of the road and hitting another car head-on. I did not get in a single accident while over there. Unfortunately I did not have a Mini Cooper, I had a Toyota Camry. The only two American cars I saw on Okinawa were a Ford Festiva and the Corvette.

Why do they drive on the wrong side of the road?

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No worries on the left hand driving - I was accustomed to it before I got my car. The only issue is finding my way around. So far, no major problems with that.

All in all, things are going famously down here. A life worth envying, in other words. :)

I'm really happy for you. You didn't by any chance have American maid on your list? I do windows! :)

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When I was in Japan I had to take an "International Driving Course" before I could drive. I do not remember exactly when I took it as I went to the field as soon as I got to Japan. But, I remember it lasting about a week and the instructor kept repeating what Arnold stated in his post, "keep left." I guess a large amount of the accidents by Americans were caused by pulling out onto the wrong side of the road and hitting another car head-on. I did not get in a single accident while over there. Unfortunately I did not have a Mini Cooper, I had a Toyota Camry. The only two American cars I saw on Okinawa were a Ford Festiva and the Corvette.

Why do they drive on the wrong side of the road?

I do not know nor do I remember asking why they chose to put the steering wheel on the opposite side of the car than us. With that said, I never had a problem with being on the opposite side of the car. Shifting the gears with your feet is the same but the hand signals, wind-shild wipers, and gear-shift are all different. As a matter of fact one of the ways to tell somebody was a "newby" to "The Rock" was by watching them drive, they would turn on the wind-shield wipers instead of their turn-signal.

Here is a link that may give possible answers why.

http://users.telenet.be/worldstandards/dri...eft.htm#history

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I do not know nor do I remember asking why they chose to put the steering wheel on the opposite side of the car than us. With that said, I never had a problem with being on the opposite side of the car. Shifting the gears with your feet is the same but the hand signals, wind-shild wipers, and gear-shift are all different. As a matter of fact one of the ways to tell somebody was a "newby" to "The Rock" was by watching them drive, they would turn on the wind-shield wipers instead of their turn-signal.

Here is a link that may give possible answers why.

http://users.telenet.be/worldstandards/dri...eft.htm#history

Thanks, Ray that was really interesting. I feel silly that I sometimes forget to google for answers I've always wondered *why.* I guess it's a bad childhood habit - I drove my daddy crazy with "why?" He said my two first words were "why?" and "mine!" Fifty two years later, they really haven't changed. :)

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Here are photos I took this weekend in the Hunter Valley.

Enjoy!

They certainly are good photos. :)

Congratulations on successfully moving here.

One thing that I have often thought is that Australia and the United States are quite similar. (I was surprised at the similarities when I went to the United States).

What would you say is the biggest difference that you have noticed between the 2 nations?

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What would you say is the biggest difference that you have noticed between the 2 nations?
Other than the dodgy accent? Just kidding...

Seriously, the major difference I see is the degree of independence in people. Aussies are an adventurous lot overall, but I think Americans have the edge on independence. Some proof of that is fewer people appear willing to challenge some of the leftist dogma in the culture here. I realize that's a negative assessment, but rest assured it's a minor point.

That aside, I find it far easier to get used to living in Australia than in the European countries I lived in when I was younger.

I did have one minor problem: which spellings to use and when. I decided ultimately that in all my local dealings, either personal or professional, I would use Australian spellings. In communicating with people back in the US, including this FORUM, I continue to use American spellings. Feel free to call me out if I ever confuse the two. :)

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In communicating with people back in the US, including this FORUM, I continue to use American spellings.

Would that be "crikey", "criky", "cricky", or "crickey"? :)

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Would that be "crikey", "criky", "cricky", or "crickey"? :D
That word seems to be the number one stereotypical thing Aussies NEVER say - or at least I haven't heard it uttered once since arriving here.

Darn that Steve Irwin! :)

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dodgy

Oh no, it's happening! :) ("dodgy" is a word I see Brits and Aussies use, but don't usually hear from Americans)

By the way, I like spelling wourds like an Australian! All you have to do is insert randomme vouwels and stouffe.

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Oh no, it's happening! :) ("dodgy" is a word I see Brits and Aussies use, but don't usually hear from Americans)
I've always liked the word 'dodgy.' It should become part of the American vocabulary, I think. :D

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Congratulations! I hope the Aussies are treating you well. My experience is that they can sometimes be tough on Americans out of jelousy. :)

I haven't found this at all. Australians are very friendly in general and often curious to hear my opinions on the upcoming election and other things American. Occasionally I get a bit of lefty nonsense, but it's not very rabid.

I know... I was just trying to stir up some lively banter, but... the Aussies on here didn't seem up for the task. :D

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