With the taste of haggis and whisky still lingering after a sensational Burns Night, it’s already time to celebrate another great nation – as 26th January is Australia Day!
Celebrations are taking place all over the world in honour of our Aussie ‘neighbours,’ and for those celebrating in the UK it looks like there’s a packed day of events taking place in London and other big cities to make sure any Australians stranded on this side of the globe will feel right at home.
There’s been some controversy over the festivities in Australia itself with the authorities looking for ways to dissuade people from drinking too heavily. They are even asking some shops to only stock booze with a low alcohol content! But although it may seem a little harsh, I think on the whole they’ve got their hearts in the right place – I’m sure they just want to make sure everyone feels able to have a good time. With a stronger police presence, I’m sure many people will feel safer celebrating on the beach and in other public places – though apparently the scorching weather over there might mean more people choosing to celebrate indoors this year. If only they could share a little with us!
So while it’s inevitable that beer will be a cornerstone of many activities, especially those being held at major pubs and restaurants like Peoples Republic, Belushi’s and of course Walkabout, there are always alternatives – including an Australian wine tasting evening at Vinopolis in London’s Bayswater area, if your palette finds grapes more appealing than barley.
Wherever you are in the UK, if you head downtown you’re likely to see Australians enjoying themselves – even more than usual! Of course, you don’t have to be Australian to join in the festivities, and it seems that Scottish tennis fans may have even more reason to celebrate if Andy Murray beats Rafael Nadal in today’s quarter-final in Melbourne.