Well, we're back in Australia. Now what?
*sound of crickets chirping*
Well first up, Tanya and I are engaged!! Not sure exactly when or where we'll actually get married but it will be in Perth somewhere in the next few months.
Other than that we're both just trying to adjust back to the Australian way of life. Right now Perth seems a bit like a museum. It's full of beautiful buildings and parks but where are all the people? Chiang Mai has a population of only around 200,000 while Perth has a population of 1.5 million. Despite that you'd swear Chiang Mai had more people living there because it was so dense. Perth occupies a massive area. According to Wikipedia Chiang Mai has a population density of 3,687 people per square kilometre. By comparison Perth has a population density of 289 people per square kilometre. I'm guessing this is why you can wander outside your house in Perth and be genuinely surprised to run into another human being. It's also why you have to drive FOREVER to get anywhere. After the always on, people absolutely everywhere world of Thailand I'm finding Perth oddly ghost town-like.
One thing I definitely haven't missed is the fear mongering Australian media. Here are the two big stories that were all over the TV when I got back.
First, the Finks, an Adelaide based bikie gang, were to visit WA. This prompted every news outlet to play video from a few years ago showing a fight between Finks and Hell's Angels over and over and over. The visit seemed to occur without any problems of any kind.
Secondly, was this story about a shark near a Perth beach.
Bonus "no fun" points for their humourless take on the midget race and for WA still not letting shops open at night. For those of you who aren't from WA, the people here have ignored the rest of Australia, and indeed the rest of the world, and decided that most businesses should be legally required to shut at 6pm during the week and to be closed all Sunday so there is basically nothing open on weeknights. I think I figured out why so many Perth people go to Melbourne or London and never come back...
It is however good to catch up with friends and family. And what with everything being closed we've got plenty of time to do it.