Linking up with Jenni to do her Blogtember. This prompt was ‘Tuesday, Sept. 3: Describe where or what you come from. The people, the places, and/or the factors that make up who you are’.
It’s actually something I’ve been thinking about fairly recently, the idea of where I come from. I grew up travelling because of my dad’s job. To make a very long story short, I was born in New Zealand, lived there for the first five years of my life, moved to Bahrain, lived there for three years, moved to England just before my eighth birthday and moved to Australia just before my 16th.
So you can see why I have somewhat of an identity crisis. Australia and New Zealand have a “friendly” rivalry. I use the term “friendly” in inverted comments because sometimes I think people go a little too overboard on the Aus vs NZ rivalry. When people find out I’m not Australian, someone else will usually pipe up “oh, she’s from New Zealand” and the jokes begin. And technically I am, you can’t fault them. But I don’t feel it. I left when I was five and who remembers much of what happened in the first five years of their life?
(The view from my dad’s place who is now living in NZ again)
In my head, I identify very strongly with England. I like its history, its culture, I even have a soft spot for its crappy weather (she writes whilst it is currently gloriously sunny and warm outside!). I get their sense of humour and their pop culture references. I really “get” England in a way I will never get New Zealand. I did most of my growing up there, I went through my moody teens there. And even now after twelve years in Australia, I still ‘think’ in English: music videos, not film clips or chips, not hot chips. (If you’re not Australian, just ignore that last part!).
However, there is now a definite part of me that is “Australian”. I lost my English accent in about six months so there’s no mistaking what part of the world I now live in. When I travel, I have no problem saying I’m from Australia. I think Australia has a pretty decent reputation. Yes, we’re known for drinking and being obnoxiously loud but I think if you spent any amount of time with me, you’d see that’s not a part of who I am. I think Australians are also known for being laidback and willing to help someone out, and that’s certainly something I can stand for.
Who knows where I will end up later on and if another country will play a part in making up my very mixed up identity!