Hay, it has been 2 weeks for me and my group being in Perth. Thare are many things that I have learned.
I will share it now, so the goal of this program, which is to get cross cultural understanding, can be spread to many people
For the first time we arrived in Perth, Western Australia, the weather was about 15 degree, and it was so cold for me who usually live in the hot weather.
My first impression with this city are clean, well organized, and quite. You will not see many rubish even in the public area such as beach or streets. The population in Perth is about 1,696 million people (2010) from total 21,5 million Australian population. Can you imagine how quiet this city is? Thats why you will not easy to see people in the street at night. It so danger for us to go outside in the night, because there is no people, and the shop has closed arround 4 pm, just night club, cafe, and restaurant that still open until arround 9 pm. So it usual for you to see many empty chair in the public transportation and of course no traffic jam!
So what I have known and learned for these 2 weeks are:
The government of Australia has a strict policy about smoking. So there are no many australian smoke even in the public area such like restaurant, cafe, or street. Cigarette is so expensive in here and the government not allow people under 18 years old (if I am not wrong) to buy cigarette. You have to show your ID first before you buy it. I am so amaze because the perception about smoker in here is so bad. But unfortunately the government challenges in Australia is about Alcohol. Australian really like Alcohol, eventhough they have a strict policy to not allow people under 18 years old to buy Alcohol. It will easy for you to get Alcohol in here and see people drunk. Inversely with Indonesia right?
You have to use seat belt wherever you go, even in the pathaway. And you are not allow to have a call or text when you are driving. There is a big fine for the one who violate it.
Australian not talking about anythings that related to physical aspects. They just talk about it to show their likeness. Such like “I like your eyes”. So its very rude if we say: your are getting fat, your eyes is small, etc
No rubber time in Australia. Its also very rude if you come late. So its better to you to come earlier .
Australia has a big problem about water, they do not have much water in this land so it is a big campaign from the government to save water in here. That is why Australian has special method to do dishes and you will be recommended to have shower just for 5 minutes.
Many Australian do dinner together. its a special time for them to share what were they doing in that day. While dinner its impolite if you use your phone or doing anything else such like reading. It is a family time so just enjoy that moment
Actually there are many more lesson that I have had, I will share it sooner in the other part I hope by this article you get more insight about Australia and the people it self. Getting a cross cultural understanding is not as easy as we think because we have to open our mind, see, criticized, understand, and you will be more wise to respond.
Indonesian Participant Youth
Australia Indonesia Youth Exchange Program 2014/2015