Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Australians All Let Us Rejoice

Happy Australia Day, everyone!

I for one am glad to celebrate that day in 1788 when Captain Philip raised the Union Flag at Sydney, the First Fleet having arrived, proclaiming British sovereignty over New South Wales (the future Australia) in fulfilment of Captain Cook's claim back in 1770.  After all, it was the reason my ancestors - free settlers all (except one) - came here...

When gallant Cook from Albion sailed
To trace wide oceans o'er
True British courage bore him on
Till he landed on our shore
And there he raised old England's flag
The standard of the brave
With all her faults we love her still
Britannia rules the waves!

(The mysteriously-rarely-sung third verse of our national anthem.)

But what should one eat and drink?

Well, the lower classes have a meat-eater's delight: a BBQ with copious amounts of beer... sounds good.

My mum thinks, though, that a proper lamb roast with pavlova for dessert would be very Aussie and patriotic (I didn't tell her that the Kiwis would likely claim both as New Zealand specialities).

[UPDATE: the family agreed that barbecued sausage, well and truly grilled black, slathered with tomato sauce and plonked in a slice of bread, plus of course lamingtons, would be suitable patriotic fare.]

Any thoughts?


Mark said...

"Any thoughts?"

Black pudding! Haggis!

Joshua said...

Hmmm, better leave that to Burns Night.

I canna recall the proportion of Scots who came to Australia, but suffice to say that as well the C. of E. church in every country town, one would find a decent Presbyterian kirk, and an R.C. church also - there's quite a lot to be said for keeping the present Australian flag, since it has the Union Flag in its corner, which in turn, being made up of the Cross of St George, the Cross of St Andrew, and the Cross of St Patrick, points to the origins of the first European settlers to come here. (Of course, since after World War II, when the slogan became Populate or Perish, there have been many more immigrants, first from other parts of Europe, then from all corners of the globe.)

While I've never seen it said, it may well be thought that the Southern Cross, taking up the right half of the flag, points not only to all who now live beneath those stars, but especially to the Aborigines, the first custodians of this land.

Joshua said...

Oh, and while I didn't have any haggis in Edinburgh - shame on you, Mark! - I did eat some in Dunedin while in N.Z. last year...

Cultus atque Humanitas said...

I celebrated Australia day with Nandos! Not very traditional I know but I did not much feel like cooking in the heat.