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Ausgabe 120

Living in Australia - How about social life?

Life is good The living standard in Australia is very high, for different reasons: Employment rate, income level, little population, vast lands. But let's not talk about economics. Fact is that Australians consider themselves as lucky and many immigrants from all over the world share this opinion.

What is it that makes life in Australia so fantastic? Another thing to mention is the social factor. And the combination of all these reasons let Australians be so relaxed, about a lot of things. This inner balance is the base for people being friendly, generous and supportive.

The Info letter will give you an insight of how life in Australia can be and how Australians are. Enjoy reading about barbeques and beers with friends, how to dress and social attitudes.
Friendly fellows In Australia people are used to tourists exploring cities and areas so remote most Australians would never travel to. And it's not that they only tolerate the co-existence. It's not unusual that they share their best travelling experience, tell you about some secret spots, shout you a drink, invite you to join them for a barbie or even to stay over at their place.

Australians are also very helpful. I once got lost on the bike and asked a man at the lights for directions. He explained I just have to turn left at the second lights to get back to the coast. Arriving at the intersection he was standing there waiting for me. He wanted to tell me that he was wrong. It's the third lights. I was very surprised. He could have continued his way home. But stopped and helped me to find my way instead. Made my day!
Just teasing You are invited over for drinks at a friend's house. Chatting along all of a sudden one of the guests you've just met starts winding you up. If I tell you that this is a sign of appeal would you believe it?

Being sarcastic in comments, playing somebody and teasing are social attitudes. By doing so Australians signalise: "I like you." or "We have something in common."

And as soon as they got you they will let you know: "I’m just teasing you!" So it’s nothing to be upset about. But especially Germans are known for not sharing this sense of humour. Don't take it serious.
It's not hard to be nice Wherever you go in Australia people will welcome you, in the shop, at the post office, at work or walking past you on the streets. You will hear: "Hey, how're you doin'?"

And it doesn't even matter if you know each other or not. It reminded me of the good old days or life in a little village where people still share words. And even if it's just the way of saying hello it's still a very nice and welcoming way to interact.
Dressing down Around the world clothes give an indication of social status. People dress according to the class they come from. And it is not only common but expected to dress up for the occasion. Not in Australia.

People that are dressed up in Australia do it because they have to, mainly for work. So dressing down is a sign of success and wealth? There are different explanations to that.

Matching the Tall Poppy Syndrome dressing down can be a way to blend in and avoid envy. But dressing down can also be a sign of status. You show that you can afford to do so. You don't have to worry about the judgement of others as you are in the position that allows you to dress casual and loose.
Generosity?! Play it down Australians are very generous. Now as they try to be humble they like to play things down. But they also give you an indication how much they spent on you. This then allows you to contribute in another way.

For example you meet friends at the Footy (Australian Football League) and they already paid for your ticket. Of course you ask how much you owe them. "Don't worry about it. It was only twenty bucks."

Instead of insisting on paying them back the exact amount, just go: "Alright. Cheers. I'll get the first round then." That's how Australians do it. And you will hear: "Good on-ya."
Happy days Hopefully one day you will have the chance to visit Australia and experience life down under. And no matter if you're having a barbie with friends, you're at the Footy or at work I'm sure you will enjoy the friendly Australian lifestyle. You'll have a good time.

Copyright cope OHG, Attif Gharbi, 2010
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ISSN 1612-8109 "Tipps und Tricks für den Alltag"