From this time forward, under God…

26 January, 2004

I've just become a citizen of the country I've called home for nearly 20 years, at an Australia Day ceremony. I'm all excited and happy. 😀

Information here

and the pledge is here

UPDATE: It was at a reasonably sized ceremony at a community hall in Scarborough, and the mayor, council and the local State and Federal politicians were there. After enduring a lot of boring speeches by important people, we finally got to the good bit and, small group by small group, we got called to the front, gave our pledges and presented with our citizenship certificates. Then there was drinks and nibblies out the back at the end in true Australian fashion, and I got to chat with most of the dignitaries.

The only oddities to speak of were a young African girl who was obviously proud of her and her parents' newfound status, and ran around showing anyone and everyone her certificate and beaming for the cameras, and an Irish guy with the same surname as me who was dressed like a soccer fan and chewed gum right through the pledge.


Happy New Year!

1 January, 2004

Happy new year to all 🙂 As I write this, Vancouver's just clicked over into 2004, so a special New Year's greeting to those of my friends who are there.

I celebrated last night by first going with my friend Steven into Northbridge (where I bumped into ), and then off to Lord Street overpass from where we had a great vantage point to watch the fireworks. We had a mini United Nations on top of the bridge and I phoned 1194 and got to hear them say “At the third stroke, it will be twelve…o'clock…precisely” and beep in the new year. (This sounds incredibly geeky, but it was fun)

The police had practically killed off Scarborough (I think we saw over 50 police and about 10 kids there) and I later heard Cottesloe was kind of the same. While I'm all for maintaining order, 99% of those kids (while maybe intoxicated) were there to have fun, and did so without offending anybody. It seems they all moved up to the coastal town of Lancelin, which was our next stop.

We decided on a whim to go there, and 1.25 hours and 120km later, we were there. The place, to which I'd never been before, was absolutely full of people, mostly underage, and we heard there'd been some problems earlier in the night and the small contingent of police had been overwhelmed. That being said, the majority of the teenagers were either sitting around at the cafe or were “happy drunk” and wishing anybody within sight a Happy New Year. We stayed there for about an hour and walked around, then went back to Perth and checked out the beaches as the sun rose.

I hope everyone else had a happy New Year's festivities (unlike my parents, who have been arguing about theirs ever since I woke up this afternoon) and that everything you wish for comes to you in 2004.