Choosing a dream destination is very difficult. There are so many wonderful places I’ve visited and so many more that I haven’t seen yet. But ultimately, I chose Australia.
Australia has always been my dream destination. So obviously I was thrilled when my dreams came true and I spent a month Down Under a few years back. But there’s so much to see in Australia that a month is much too short a time to visit everything worth seeing. Besides, I don't have a favourite city in Australia, the whole continent is my favourite.
|Sydney from a ferry|
I didn’t want to over-schedule so that I’d have to run from one place to another without having the time to enjoy myself and relax. I’m a total foodie and my favourite way to enjoy vacation time is eating and having a drink with friends. So obviously, my time in Australia was spent at many a dinner and party, including sharing a meal with some Aussie friends.
I’ve been working as a translator from English for about a decade now. My English is pretty decent, if I say so myself (my mother tongue is Slovenian). Travelling to Australia, I didn’t think I’d encounter many language barriers or have trouble understanding Australians. I realized their English has some peculiarities that I was not familiar with because I mostly translate from American English, but I didn’t expect any major problems.
|Melbourne by night|
While visiting with friends in Melbourne, we put together a dinner of fish and a bottle (or two) of amazing Australian white wine. I realized during that visit that languages have a way of surprising you. I was suddenly invited to help prepare the tucker, and was told that in the arvo, I’d have to take a smoko without a cuppa because the coffee machine was cactus and is going into the garbo ... Say, what?!? I guess you can crash against a language barrier even when you speak the language. Regional dialects can be confusing but they’re also what makes languages so beautiful and unique.
|Australia has great seafood ...|
|... and terrific wines. (Yering winery)|
So rather than being scared off by Aussie slang, I grabbed the chance to learn a few new phrases. Mostly, I asked the locals to explain the meanings of some words. Language is a living thing, so it’s always best to have an expression explained by a native speaker, and slang expressions are far more reliably explained by people than by translation apps.
It’s different when travelling to countries where the official language is not English. Planning a trip is much easier when the websites are translated into English. Sometimes it happens that a website is not translated in its entirety or at all. In such cases, software to translate websites can be very useful and it makes planning more enjoyable and quicker.
|I'm more of a city girl ...|
|...but Australian landscape is breathtaking.|