Stoned in Australia
Story by Pat Moore
“G’day mate! Let’s throw another shrimp on the barby! Good as!” I don’t know why us Americans are so infatuated with the local slang like we are with the Australian lingo. We sound like total kooks anytime we try to mimic their quick draw and honestly look like idiots when we are thinking of the proper saying. Scotty James made a good point when he told me Americans just talk slowly, which is ironic because Scotty somehow adds multiple letters to his own words. For example an easy ,“no,” sounds more like, “noouuuurrrr,” when blurted from his face. All that shit is besides the point since this article will not be about dialect. It’ll be about my own opinion on Australia. With this being my first experience I’m confident in saying it’s exactly like America, just opposite. Here’s how.
I boarded my flight from super sunny fun-time Los Angeles, which is a sprawling urban jungle which borders two geographical features: mountains on the east side and ocean on the west. It is dark when we depart and after three movies, a couple glasses of wine and some terrible food, the sun rises as we speed above an area somewhere between Fiji and our destination, Sydney. Sydney is a beautiful city. It is a sprawling urban oasis with 2 definitive characteristics; ocean bordering the east and mountains (maybe an exaggeration, higher ground may be more appropriate) to its west.
Many snow enthusiasts looking to enjoy the beauty of California’s mountains will fly into LAX and then make the very pleasant six hour drive North on the 395 to Mammoth Mountain. Along this drive you get to see quaint little towns, high desert, mountains and wildlife. Since we were in Australia, we loaded up our opposite-sided whip and drove a similar six hours south from Sydney along the Monaro Highway to Perisher Resort. Along the way we gawked at some beautiful scenery, ate some food in a nice town and got to see lots of Kangaroos (mostly dead ones).
Now, mountain-wise I wouldn’t compare Perisher to Mammoth, but rather a Big Bear or if you’re on the east coast it’s similar to Wachusett’s size. Similar to the prior examples’ lack of vert, they make up for it in quality parks. Perisher’s parks are designed by pro snowboarder Charles Beckinsale, and his knowledge of snowboarding really makes the parks flow with lots of different ways to hit each feature. Each jump is basically four different things, so although the park is relatively short, there’s endless ways to ride it. You got enough tricks for a park like that? I do. Methods.
The snowboard scene is awesome, with the park being so good, most of the uber-pro multi-flip guys are there practicing their acrobatics. Going up the chairlift is similar to a great seat at the X Games, with rider after rider chucking in every which way. The bottom jump was pretty perfect with some nice loft and an easy landing, so there were a lot of double corks and fancy spins with grab, grab, grab, grabs. All in all the level of riding there was spectacular, and seeing the new Volcom groms destroy the park was inspiring. Kids these days… they are good!
So I guess to get back to what I was saying, Australia is very similar to the US, or at the very least the area I visited is much like an area in America that I frequent. The people are radical, you can board it up whichever way you desire, and they speak the same language… Kind of. At the beginning of the trip I was annoyed by all the stupid sayings, but much like traveling to anywhere else you end up trying to talk the talk just ’cause it’s fun. If you got the means, go check it out. If I were back east I’d say this place is wicked awesome, but down under I’d say it’s good as mate!