Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Filling the void of what I miss from home

Two months of our trip have passed and I can report I do not have homesickness.

Of course, however, there are things and people from home that I miss.

Near the top of the list of things that I miss: Mexican food.

Not Taco Bell but real Mexican food!

Hispanic influence in most parts of Australia appears to be absent. Asian-fusion and Greek cuisine can easily be found here but I really miss enchiladas, chimichangas and fresh salsa.

There are two technological-guilty-pleasures I miss regularly as well. One: dependable and convenient wireless Internet. And two: a cell phone plan with unlimited texting and calling.

I say "guilty pleasures" because part of this year-long journey's purpose was to unplug from the everyday riff-raff and to rejuvenate myself. The constant connectedness of Facebook, e-mail and texting can sometimes get interrupt to rejuvenation and relaxation.

But, when trying to keep in touch with family and friends, it's frustrating to not have Internet at your fingertips.

And, constantly having to add credit to a pre-paid phone here can be costly and annoying.

Lastly, the nerdy journalist in me misses American media.

Although the world is flat and news can be at our fingertips no matter where we are, keeping up with trends and news at home requires actual effort while traveling.

When I'm at home, I can play the TV in the background or chat with friends to catch up on current events at home. Australian media outlets cover world events but, fittingly, the bulk of coverage focuses on Aussie news.

To really keep up with news from home requires carving out time to visit American news media websites--which is easier said than done (see above reference to Internet).

That being said, I've found things here to fill the void of what I miss from home.

Although completely different than Mexican food, Outback cuisine holds a special place in my heart.

Meat and veggies everyday--great for my taste-buds, not great for my waistline! Gravy comes on everything here! And let's not forget the occasional beer for dessert. :)

And, consuming Aussie news is a great way to gain an outside perspective on U.S. issues. Plus, the Australian media's take on objectivity is a bit different than the traditional idea of journalistic objectivity in America. Perhaps that will be another blog post for another day, though...

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