This day represents such incredibly opposing things, depending on when you chose to call this country home. I'm a ring in. I've called this country home for 11 years now, a citizen for almost eight of those. I come from a country that also has a violent and manipulative invasion within its history books. And even though I call that country my homeland, only one half of my bloodline was indigenous. Meaning the other half is descended from invaders and legalized thieves.
The NZ Maori managed to maintain a lot of their heritage to the present day. Te Reo is taught in schools, spoken on the streets, and showcases of the culture is a multi-billion dollar tourism industry for NZ.
The same cannot be said for indigenous Australians.
For them, this day is not about celebrating being Australian. This day marks the beginning of decades of abuse, violence, death and destruction - of land, homes, family and culture.
So, today holds mixed feelings for me.
Heartache for the people and culture, subjected to so much devastation, still holding on amidst struggle after struggle.
And gratitude. To live in a country as beautiful, as opportunistic, as free as Australia is for an educated, white, female immigrant like me.
So what did I do today?
I sat on the sofa - all day - with my British immigrant beloved, drinking wine and watching movies.
Celebrating downtime together.
Celebrating freedom of rights in the country we feel blessed to live in.
Celebrating fine wine and gluten-free pizza.
We broke raw today in outrageous fashion! Buckwheat pancakes with beans and eggs.
Drank copious bottles of alcohol.
Then cleansed our palate later in the evening with strawberry mango sorbet.
So while I personally don't consider *this* day as a day to celebrate due to the history of bloodshed, I did choose to pay gratuitous thanks to find myself healthy, happy and free in this wide brown land called home.
(PS, apol for the late post. I couldn't remember my password *blush*)