Much like its geographical position, Australia is a place where most of the norms we know are flipped upside down. Here, taking the backseat of a taxi is a sin, beer after work is OK every day, and the most popular spread is ultra-bitter and salty.
Somewhere along the way, the facts surrounding the country also gets flipped and twisted, resulting in a bunch of widespread misconception that most of the world already accepted as absolute truths.
Here, we bust 4 fun myths about Australia these days.
If movies like Australia, Crocodile Dundee, and Kangaroo Jack were to be believed, the sun is always up in Australia.
Australia’s overall climate sits at mild to temperate, which can pass for summer especially in colder regions of the world but the climate down under is more diverse than that.
The country is home to the most erratic weather patterns. It is not unusual for the cities like Melbourne to go through four seasons in a single day, from dry to wet to freezing cold, all before you step out of your office. Canberra, on the other hand, casually experiences severely cold and dry weather. Sydney, the epitome of beach life all year round, experiences heavy rainfalls and biting thunderstorms along the way.
Australia might be famous for an outdoor lifestyle with the citizens getting a lot of sun, but it goes with a caution. One minute you’re enjoying the sunshine, the next you are getting battered by rain.
Australian beaches are teeming with sharks. You are in danger of an attack the moment you dipped your toes on the water. Just look at Mick Fanning.
Australia may have gotten the top spot when it comes to shark attack fatalities, but the number of attacks themselves, which is 665 incidences from 1958 to 2014, cannot hold a candle to that of United States which recorded 1,104 attacks within that span of time.
With this number, attacks occurring in the beaches of Australia is still considered relatively rare, with the fatalities even more unlikely. In fact, shark attacks should be the least of your worries when going to the beach. Statistically, more people have died of accidental drowning at 4,500 deaths a year and coastal lightning strikes at 38 deaths a year.
The inland is home to the deadliest spiders, snakes, crocodiles, and more spiders.
The world cradles approximately 25 deadly snakes, and 20 of them hangs out in Australia. The country also is a refuge to the ten of the most pernicious spiders in the planet. And while we’re on it, the saltwater crocodile, aka the largest reptilian predator we have now (the dinosaurs quit living ages ago), also adds the roster of Australia’s Most Wanted, roaming freely in the country’s mud waters.
Well, the thing is, they are not the serial killers they are portrayed to be.
The snakes, despite their number and sheer ferocity, have an average kill record of less than two each year. Those humongous crocs, on the other hand, have less than one fatality each year on average. Lastly, the spiders, haven’t killed anybody in the country in the last 36 years.
By comparison, 58 people are dying each year from falling off their beds. Now you know who the real killer is.
The modern Australians’ ancestors were dangerous convicts Great Britain couldn’t keep around so they dumped them in the Land Down Under instead.
While it is true that the first settlers of the country were convicts, they’re not the murderers, thieves, and rapists they were pictured to be. For most of them, their offences ran along the range of “stealing a piece of bread,” “pick-pocketing, or just outright “being poor.” Since their war with American Revolutionists dried up much of their resources, England couldn’t keep much of its citizens employed and well-fed, so petty crimes rose up. With the prison spaces rapidly decreasing, exiling them to the newly discovered Terra Australis was the quickest solution. Here, the convicts toiled hard and steady and eventually founded a new country.
Basically, the Aussies’ forebears were just a group of people who tried to survive an unforgiving living condition in England, only to be exiled and try to survive an unforgiving living condition here in Australia, and twice won.