Bonus Ep 55 - EuroTrip Through Aussie Eyes: Culture, Challenges, and Charm

Charlie gets his cousin Jordan on to discuss the joys and challenges of traveling, like adapting to new cultures and a funny story about sleeping in an unfinished building in Montenegro. It's a chat full of travel tales and reflections on how these experiences change them.
Feb 23 / Charlie Baxter

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What's this episode about?

Charlie gets his cousin Jordan on to discuss the joys and challenges of traveling, like adapting to new cultures and a funny story about sleeping in an unfinished building in Montenegro. It's a chat full of travel tales and reflections on how these experiences change them.

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Transcript of Premium Bonus 055- Transcript

Charlie:
Hello or g'day from Down Under as I am back in Sydney baby! Feeling smug that I managed to escape the worst of the winter in the UK as my cousin very kindly offered to put us up for the majority of our stay. To put somebody up a phrasal verb which means to accommodate them or to host them. And so as my wife Stacey and I are now both working for ourselves and are remote based, we were able to do what I've been dreaming of doing since I was 18, which was to pack up our laptops when the thermostat hits zero, chase the sun, and plop the laptops back down, gently of course, in a place boasting 30°C. And you know what? It could be my imagination. But I feel like my British friends, and certainly my family members, are not wanting to talk to me as much right now. Again, they probably don't have the headspace to even, you know, care. But I kind of feel like I've abandoned them in battle, having walked off just when the enemy are about to attack. Because, you know, the magic of Christmas gets Brits through the first half of the winter. But when January comes, we all get a bit sad, and it's not until March that we start to smile again. So I do feel a bit like a traitor.

Charlie:
But I'm also loving the sun. I guess that tells you something about my moral fibre. But anyway, as I mentioned, my cousin has put us up for 2 to 3 weeks and as I managed to travel with my microphones despite security at the airport accusing me of owning some rather aggressive looking sex toys, um, you know, through the lens of an x ray machine, a microphone looks pretty suspect. But I was able to get through and then whip them out in Sydney and record a conversation with my cousin. He's actually my second cousin, which means we don't share a grandparent, but we do share a great grandparent. And I felt like you would enjoy hearing about his journey, as he has lived in the UK, in London and has travelled around the British Isles and all over Europe really for the majority of his 20s. So he's had the ability to compare and contrast cultures as an outsider, being that he was born and raised in Australia, and he also shares a brilliant story about how he managed to keep his cost of living down when he was backpacking at one point. So, um, yes, sit back, relax, get the kettle on, and get ready to enjoy a conversation with my cousin from Down Under called Jordan.

Charlie:
Hello, Jordan.

Jordan:
Hello, Charlie.

Charlie:
How are you going?

Jordan:
I'm going well.

Charlie:
Yeah? Because in England. Do you know what we would say instead of how are you going?

Jordan:
Uh, in London, I hear them say, alright!

Charlie:
Yeah, alright, mate.

Jordan:
Alright, mate.

Charlie:
So you're doing well today, though.

Jordan:
I'm doing well.

Charlie:
Yeah. Nice. It's a hot one today, isn't it?

Jordan:
Yeah it was 37 degrees today, so it's pretty, pretty hot even for, um Australia standards it was pretty warm.

Charlie:
Yeah. You don't get too many of them in the summer do you?

Jordan:
No, uh, we probably I think this was the, the hottest day in about four years.

Charlie:
Oh, really?

Jordan:
Yeah.

Charlie:
Wow. So I've come from England and it was the winter, so it was zero degrees when we left, and it was minus five when we landed here. Obviously didn't get to experience that, but it's gone from 0 to 37 pretty quickly for me. And I've actually got blisters on my hand. I think they're heat blisters and I keep popping them. It's a bit disgusting for everyone, but yeah. So, um, we're in a different climate for me, but we're here to talk about your experience abroad. But before that, can you tell us a little bit about yourself, um, and, and your experience in Australia?

Jordan:
Sure. Well, I guess I am Australian. I was born here. Um, so I was born in a little town called Byron Bay, which is quite famous on the the backpacker travel route around Australia.

Charlie:
Absolutely.

Jordan:
So it's on the east, the most easterly point of Australia, so juts out into the Pacific Ocean. Um, the whales that travel up and down the east coast in winter past that point. And because it's the really juts out there, they pass quite close to the land. And so every winter there's a big display of whales as they pass by. So that brings a lot of the tourists. Um, but also it's big on the backpacker trail. So usually we get British, German, Dutch and more recently Venezuelans, South American, uh, travellers who come to... Argentinian, who come to Australia, they spend usually they plan to spend a week in Byron Bay but end up staying for a month or even a year.

Charlie:
And so you would mingle with those tourists and those backpackers regularly?

Jordan:
Yeah, as a teenager, just coming out of high school and then turning 18, which is the age that you can drink alcohol, go to bars, go to pubs. Uh, that's when I would interact with them more.

Charlie:
Right.

Jordan:
Because, you know, they're usually 18, 19. They've just finished high school in their own country.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And they're travelling around Australia.

Charlie:
Uh huh.

Jordan:
And so that was usually when we'd first meet them.

Charlie:
Yes. And, uh, did you notice a difference between certain cultures and how receptive they were to you as an Aussie?

Jordan:
Um, when I was also at a bar or a pub, they'd be pretty eager to meet a local Byron Bay person.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you have a surfboard under your armpit?

Jordan:
Sometimes. Not at the pub, but, you know, sometimes. And that would be. I guess that's a good, um, uh, conversation starter.

Charlie:
Yes, definitely. I mean, you started the conversation with us when we landed saying that you've got two paddleboards. I feel like that would have been your. I've got a surfboard. Do you want to come over?

Jordan:
That was exactly my pick up line.

Charlie:
Nice. So Byron Bay but we're in Sydney right now. So you've spent some time in Sydney obviously.

Jordan:
I've been in Sydney for six years now.

Charlie:
Right.

Jordan:
Um, I guess as it's a big, as a, the largest city in Australia. It's the big drawcard. It attracts people for work, for study, for um, culture, the museums, the galleries. That's why people come to Sydney. Uh, it's also a beautiful city. It's right on the harbour. Uh, nice beaches, nice ocean. Good. Good weather, good climate.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
It's a pretty attractive place to to come to live.

Charlie:
Yeah. I have fallen in love with it for its beauty and for climate. Um, does it make you miss Byron? Because Byron's a bit of a different lifestyle.

Jordan:
Yeah, it's very different to Byron Bay. It's, um, Byron Bay has a much slower pace of life. Sydney is more busy. Hustle, bustle, uh, the big city life. Byron Bay it's quieter. The tallest buildings may be three storeys tall, so it has a much more relaxed feel.

Charlie:
And, uh, in Byron, you don't have to wear shoes.

Jordan:
Yeah. It'd be strange to see someone with shoes on.

Charlie:
Did you not wear shoes?

Jordan:
Never.

Charlie:
Really?

Jordan:
Never. I hated wearing shoes. And it was a point of pride to not wear shoes when you go to the supermarket or go to the shops.

Charlie:
Wow. What about a tourist coming through like a German backpacker? Would they? Would they wear shoes?

Jordan:
Yeah, usually. I think because it's unusual for them to not wear shoes in public in a shop.

Charlie:
Almost that's a tell of who's local.

Jordan:
In a way. Yeah. Yeah.

Charlie:
Fascinating. Yeah. Okay. And you did Brisbane. You lived in Brisbane for a bit. That's where I stayed with you.

Jordan:
Four years in Brisbane. Um, that was for university. Again Byron Bay, just its location, uh, northern New South Wales. So that's sort of halfway up the country on the east coast. The closest large city is Brisbane. And so naturally, people, after they finish high school go into university. The closest for university would be Brisbane.

Charlie:
Yeah. Yeah that's a difference in the UK that you may already be aware of, that we kind of go all over the country for university and we stay there. Well you, no you actually did a fairly similar situation because you lived with some uni mates didn't you?

Jordan:
I think in the UK it's very common to go to another city to study in a completely different city to where you grew up. Australia people tend to either stay at home with their parents because the cost of living is so expensive. The cost of renting, um, usually people would stay in their own city and study in that city, or travel not too far to the closest large city or or where there's the closest university.

Charlie:
Yeah. Another thing is that we really think about the university and the degree, like the matching up of the respect of that school and the, the education that you're getting. So like Stacey, Nottingham was very, very sought after for arts in general. Um, obviously you've got the Oxfords and Cambridge, but like, you know, you would, you would really think about what you're studying and what is the best school in your country for that thing. Is that a thing majorly here or not?

Jordan:
No, I'd say not. Each university probably has the same subjects, so and they're all more or less equally known for or renowned for for that particular subject.

Charlie:
Interesting.

Jordan:
Less, less of an emphasis on that in Australia than probably the UK.

Charlie:
Right. What did you study?

Jordan:
So in Brisbane I studied what was called a Bachelor of Arts. The majors were criminology and international relations.

Charlie:
Ah! Did not know that.

Jordan:
And that was immediately after high school. I wasn't quite sure what I wanted to study, but they sounded very interesting and they were very interesting subjects.

Charlie:
Ah okay!

Jordan:
That was my bachelor.

Charlie:
Yeah. Criminology. Yeah, I did not. I did not know that about you. Or maybe you told me when we were in your uni digs.

Jordan:
Maybe.

Charlie:
But the geckos distracted me somewhat, dropping from the ceiling and everyone's like, ah. I'm like ah, um, criminology. Okay. And then after that you pivoted somewhat?

Jordan:
I did. So I after that I studied law, or at least a, uh, what's it's called a masters of applied law.

Charlie:
Right.

Jordan:
So it wouldn't allow me to practice law, but it would give me a foundation, an understanding of law. So I studied that again in Brisbane. Yeah, but six of those months I did in Austria, in Salzburg.

Charlie:
Aha. And was that the first exposure to living abroad?

Jordan:
Uh, I travelled when I was younger, abroad, but that was the first experience living in the same place, in the same town and really immersing myself in that local culture.

Charlie:
How was that experience?

Jordan:
It was good. It was again, I'd come from Australian summer and arrived in Austria in winter. So like you, your experience of cold to hot was the reverse.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
So scorching hot summer right into a freezing subzero Austrian winter.

Charlie:
Yeah. And mentally that for me it was going from depressed to very happy. Was yours the opposite?

Jordan:
No, I think there's always, um. It's always exciting when you go somewhere new.

Charlie:
Yeah, that's true.

Jordan:
Even if it's cold and dark, it's still exciting and different.

Charlie:
Yeah, yeah, yeah, that's true. And also, I guess, correct me if I'm wrong, but Australians have a sort of romantic association with the cold and like snow?

Jordan:
Yeah, absolutely. I think there's always that sort of, you know, Christmas time we don't experience cold snow. So we have this sort of idealised fantasy, um, fairytale view of winter.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
But to be honest, Austria lived up to that fairytale expectation.

Charlie:
Nice.

Jordan:
You know, it's, um, it's a very beautiful area. Lots of snow, beautiful mountains. And. Yeah, I think it did kind of match up to that, that idealised expectation.

Charlie:
Yeah. In Germany we had the German markets around Christmas time. Did they have good markets?

Jordan:
Yeah they did. And there's also, I can't remember the name of the festival where, um, people wear scary costumes with big horns, hairy outfits, and they walk around the streets and scare children.

Charlie:
I'll Google it. Krampus?

Jordan:
That's it. Yeah.

Charlie:
Tourists in Austria have been shocked by a terrifying Christmas tradition, where people dress up as Krampus and run through the streets with sticks. Krampus? Is that, um, Santa Claus? Is that?

Jordan:
No, I don't know what its background is. Um, but it's definitely terrifying.

Charlie:
Wow. So that was oh my gosh! That is horrific. I'm looking at an incredibly scary mask of a man that's got, like, vampire teeth on steroids and a moulding face and huge horns.

Jordan:
And I think the, um, the scarier the costume, the better. So they, the participants try to outdo the others with the most scary costume.

Charlie:
Did you get involved?

Jordan:
I got scared, yeah, I guess that's getting involved.

Charlie:
Yeah, but that was very early on in your experience yeah. Just a spectator perhaps? Any other memorable experiences in Salzburg?

Jordan:
Well, I guess coming from Australia, I always focus on the things that are very different to what we have at home. Uh, so the mountains were incredible. The snow, the forests, uh, the old medieval streets and castle overlooking the town.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And just the way that people get about, I guess bicycles, public transport was very efficient. Whereas in Australia, I don't know, it's it's maybe a little bit more like America, where there's a heavy focus on personal cars and travelling by car.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
Whereas in Austria, I was amazed at how effective the buses were and everyone was able to ride around on bicycles.

Charlie:
I can imagine that suiting your personality a bit more. You prefer that?

Jordan:
Yeah, I think so. Definitely, definitely.

Charlie:
Did you have a bike?

Jordan:
Yeah I bought an old €20 second hand bike.

Charlie:
€20. Very nice. So Salzburg. And then what was after that?

Jordan:
So after that I got a job in Australia, which allowed me to work very intensively for three months of the year. So I'd be doing ten hour, 12 hour days for three months of the year in Australia, and then I would use the rest of the year to travel, and I do a little bit of work here and there, a couple of hours per day, five days a week, for example.

Charlie:
Hang on 10 to 12 hour days. That's long. But that's not insane.

Jordan:
No it's not. No. Okay. Sorry.

Charlie:
To do like three months and then have the rest off.

Jordan:
Yeah. It would be seven days a week though. Um. For three months.

Charlie:
Oh, seven days a week.

Jordan:
Yeah. So no rest. For those three months.

Charlie:
That's cramming it in. You liked that approach to life?

Jordan:
Yeah. I like to work hard and then relax.

Charlie:
And then take a long time off. Yeah. So where did you go on the first time where you had the rest of the year off?

Jordan:
I think the first time I went overseas was to the UK. I spent some time in Northern Ireland, in Scotland and down in England.

Charlie:
Right. Quite a few variations in the way that the people speak and behave. Did you, did you notice any preferences?

Jordan:
Yeah. In fact I'd probably say the Scottish were, were more friendly or at least open than the English to meeting new people. And then the Irish even more so.

Charlie:
Ah!

Jordan:
The Northern Irish were very friendly.

Charlie:
Yeah. They take well to Aussies?

Jordan:
Yeah, I think so. Yeah, I think so. I think, um, as an Australian, you're quite a novelty over there.

Charlie:
Uh huh. Okay. So you experienced those three countries and then did you go to the mainland much in that stint?

Jordan:
Yeah so I did spend quite a bit of time in, in Germany.

Charlie:
What was the reason that you went from the UK or the British Isles to then?

Jordan:
Well, I guess what took me to Europe in the first place was I met a, um, a girl in Australia.

Charlie:
Oh!

Jordan:
A German who of course was travelling in Australia, and that's what motivated me to go to Europe in the first place.

Charlie:
Did you meet her in Byron when you had a...

Jordan:
That's right. I had a surfboard under my arm.

Charlie:
Is that how you met her?

Jordan:
Not quite, but the next time I met her, I did have a surfboard under my arm. I think that's what cemented it.

Charlie:
And I met her. Right?

Jordan:
You did. Yes. Yeah you did. Lara. Lara you did.

Charlie:
Lara. I was about to say Lana. But Lara. Yeah. Yeah.

Jordan:
In Brisbane you met her.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
And maybe even in the UK.

Charlie:
Yeah. Yeah, I think so. Yeah. So you were with her for quite a few years.

Jordan:
Yeah, a number of years. Yeah. I think six years or so. Yeah.

Charlie:
Yeah right. Okay. So she took you to Germany.

Jordan:
That's right.

Charlie:
Where in Germany?

Jordan:
So I was living in Berlin for the majority, but then we did a lot of travel around as well. And I lived in Munich for some time. Uh, and Germany's, it's fairly small country by Australian standards, but really different within that small space. The people in Germany are quite different from north to south, east to west. There's a lot of variation within Germany within such a small area.

Charlie:
Okay. For example?

Jordan:
Well, I guess the lower down in the south, close to Bavaria, which is similar to Austria in terms of their attitudes. And then you go further north to Berlin, where it's a bit more, I guess it's a bit more open. People are more familiar with people from overseas in a city like Berlin, which is a big capital, uh, whereas Salzburg, they're not as used to foreign people. And so it was a little bit harder, I think, to make friends in that sort of area compared to Berlin, which is a very open big city.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you spend much time down there in Bavaria?

Jordan:
Down south? I did, yeah. And my initial thought was that it was a more closed conservative society.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
Uh, but then I think it's just it takes a bit of time to get to know people. Once you know them there, they open up more. And it's easier to make friends once you get to know them. But it can take a little bit of time.

Charlie:
Yes. And did you speak any German while you were there?

Jordan:
I tried to learn a little. I wasn't the best, but I think by by learning a little and, and by making that effort, that really helps as well. That opens, opens up.

Charlie:
Did you manage to get to like almost conversational?

Jordan:
No.

Charlie:
No?

Jordan:
Ah. Very limited conversation within specific contexts. I could have a conversation.

Charlie:
A great listener.

Jordan:
Yeah. Exactly.

Charlie:
Nice. So you spent quite a few years in Germany and then you travelled around outside of Germany throughout those years, yeah?

Jordan:
So the way that I could stay in Europe for as long as I did was by hopping from country to country and taking out a working holiday visa.

Charlie:
In those in those neighbouring countries?

Jordan:
Mhm. That's right. So as an Australian we had access to German, Dutch, UK, Irish working holiday visas, and by renewing each year I'd get a different visa. They'd only last for a year. I'd get a new one each year, and that would allow me to stay in Europe for longer than I would otherwise be able to if I was just a tourist.

Charlie:
Uh huh. Yeah. And in that moment, were you thinking, I assume the answer is no, but were you thinking what the long term solution would be?

Jordan:
Answer's no. No, I was definitely I didn't have a long term plan in mind.

Charlie:
Yeah. Fair enough. At that age, you were like, what, 23, 24?

Jordan:
Would've been from yeah, age 23 to 27 or so.

Charlie:
Yeah. What led you back to Australia?

Jordan:
Well I guess eventually I had to ask myself that question. What is the long term plan?

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And, um, I could see that it was not a long term sustainable plan. Eventually it is easier to have roots and establish yourself in a particular location. That definitely does make things easier and more sustainable. It would be difficult to continually jump from country to country.

Charlie:
Mm. When you were jumping from country to country, I imagine your your trips that you were experiencing, they weren't quite the typical sort of hotel by the pool, all inclusive kind of thing? I imagine you liked the backpacker kind of lifestyle.

Jordan:
Well, yes, in a way, but also to travel for that long and to live overseas for that long when you're not earning very much money, you are forced to find the cheapest options and the cheaper alternatives to, uh, cook your own meals, eat out, and would be only on very special occasions. And even then it would be the most cheap places that you could find. Also, I was lucky that I had a lot of cousins or distant cousins, or even people who I'd met while travelling who kindly would offer a bedroom or a couch for a couple of weeks. And so by going from the kind hospitality of of someone that you'd met recently or a family member, I was able to stretch out my travel longer than I otherwise would've. And I guess it is. It is also an exciting way to travel rather than staying in fancy hotels all the time.

Charlie:
Definitely. When you look back at those memories, I know there's a lot of years that you packed in there, but are there any that stand out to you that you were particularly thrifty with some of the trips you were like quite proud of how how you managed to get by on in one moment on such a small amount of money?

Jordan:
Well, yes. I mean, I don't know if other people would consider them to be proud moments. But for example, I remember being in Montenegro, uh, city called Kotor, which I arrived very late at night on the bus and I thought I could find a cheap hostel, but unfortunately they were all closed. The only places still open were expensive hotels. And I went into one and I asked the price and it was very expensive. And I asked him, oh, is there anything cheaper? Even a broom closet, for example. And he said, no.

Charlie:
This is like the modern day Joseph and Mary story, isn't it?

Jordan:
I said, I have, I have €30. Would that be enough for the cheapest room? And he said, no, for €30 you can sleep on the street. And I thought, hmm, you know what, I will. So then I walked around the city and I found a, um, an old abandoned house. And it was being, I think there was, it was in the process of being repaired. So there was some cement bags, some doors that were yet to be placed on the house. And I found an a new door. So it was clean new timber door, which was yet to be put on, to be placed on into the door frame.

Charlie:
Right.

Jordan:
So it was laying flat on the on the floor and I thought, oh, this looks like a comfortable bed for at least one night.

Charlie:
What? The door.

Jordan:
The door. So yeah, I slept on the door.

Charlie:
Wait, I thought you were gonna say you propped the door up and you made it, like, sealed. So you had a house.

Jordan:
Okay, okay. No I slept

Charlie:
So you slept.

Jordan:
On the door.

Charlie:
Out. Was this winter?

Jordan:
No, it was. It was summer, I think. It wasn't too cold. I did need a jacket to be. I placed a jacket over myself for a blanket.

Charlie:
You used a door, that's great! What about did you pay that hotel manager €30?

Jordan:
No, no. I put the €30 back in my pocket and walked out of there. And then I found the...

Charlie:
The door.

Jordan:
The door. I actually placed, because I was... There wasn't a door on this house. I was a bit worried that someone in the middle of the night could just walk in, so I just put two sticks across the doorway so that if somebody were to walk through, they would knock the sticks and I'd wake up and and then I could run away.

Charlie:
Oh, okay. So the door, it was in the house. It wasn't on the side.

Jordan:
In the house. Yeah.

Charlie:
Okay.

Jordan:
Inside the house.

Charlie:
So the door.. The the house didn't have a door on it. It was, it had sandbags and it was dark. So you were, you're like oh what's going on in here. You walked in and you saw the door and you're like that's a nice door that could make a comfortable bed.

Jordan:
Exactly.

Charlie:
And it was made of wood?

Jordan:
It was a wooden door. It was.

Charlie:
But doors are normally quite like. They've got a lot of engravings normally?

Jordan:
A regular surface, no this was a smooth, smooth door.

Charlie:
It was a smooth door! I like your thinking. Yeah. Did you have a pillow?

Jordan:
I used, um, some clothes as a pillow.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you get some sleep?

Jordan:
Yeah, some sleep. But during the middle of the night, I heard a noise.

Charlie:
The sticks!

Jordan:
The sticks falling. And I freaked out thinking, oh, my goodness, someone's coming in. But, um. And I woke in a panic, but looked up and there was a cat coming through the door.

Charlie:
Oh. Where was the owner if there was a cat.

Jordan:
I think it was just a... The town cat.

Charlie:
The town cat. Yeah. Fair enough. That's hilarious. Right. What country? Where was that?

Jordan:
This was in Montenegro.

Charlie:
Okay. Um, I've got a question here. What were some of the most striking cultural differences you noticed in the European countries you lived in?

Jordan:
I guess, um, it's always something that you take for granted in the country that you come from. And then you see how people live differently overseas. And it's always quite a shock.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
For me, when I went to Austria for the first time, I was amazed at the nudity of people in gyms, pools, parks.

Charlie:
When you say gyms, you mean in the locker room, right?

Jordan:
The locker room. Yeah. Not not on the gym floor. In the locker room, in parks, there's a lot of nudity. And whereas in Australia, people, they would have a quick shower and then get dressed quite quickly. They would try to limit their nudity as much as possible. Whereas in Austria it seemed that they would brush their teeth, then they'd brush their hair, then they would spray on their deodorant, and the very last thing they would do is put their underwear on.

Charlie:
Yeah, yeah, I noticed that too. But I started to relish the comfort of that. And by the end of the three year stint I was in Nuremberg, I felt like kind of at that level. And then I came to Australia and I felt that confidence, and I was doing it in like a on the side of the beach kind of changing area. And I realised that people were thinking I was really weird because I was quite naked for a long time. So then I started to shift and, and since then I've kind of forgotten about that comfort. Did you get comfortable with the nudity or did you...

Jordan:
I don't think I ever did no.

Charlie:
No?

Jordan:
It's such a strange concept in in compared to Australia. Very reserved conservative society I guess here.

Charlie:
Yeah, yeah.

Jordan:
I guess another thing I noticed was the this is a German example is how direct people are with their thoughts and how they would tell you what they think, which can come across as rude initially.

Charlie:
To an Aussie?

Jordan:
Yes. Or probably a Brit as well. Um, the way that they give feedback. So the example that I'm thinking is when I was working in Germany, I was working for a cosmetics company, just working in IT, so just on their computers.

Charlie:
Uh huh.

Jordan:
And my supervisor gave me some feedback, and I don't remember the exact specifics, but I remember thinking, oh my goodness, she hates me. She she's so critical. She's telling me how bad I am.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And I found that quite shocking. But then I came to realise that it's just how they speak their mind. It's normal.

Charlie:
How did you realise that she didn't hate you?

Jordan:
Because she was still nice to me later. She just gave me some very direct feedback.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
Which coming from probably a British or Australian cultural background being as direct as that would be considered rude.

Charlie:
Mm.

Jordan:
Whereas in the German culture it's just speaking their mind or speaking their truth.

Charlie:
Yeah. Being efficient as well.

Jordan:
Exactly.

Charlie:
Yeah. So did you feel that in your relationship at all with Lara?

Jordan:
Um. No. I think she was probably aware of the indirect Australian approach. I think she was very good at not being direct.

Charlie:
Yeah?

Jordan:
So maybe she was adjusting for me.

Charlie:
Okay, I remember, so I was 19 and I came to see you in Brisbane, and she was living with you at the time.

Jordan:
Yeah.

Charlie:
And I just remember I have a very distinct memory of whenever like she would disagree with you or something. She was very good at English, but she would go back to her German and she would just shout at you. Nein!

Jordan:
Yes, that's true. But at least I understood what that meant.

Charlie:
You had that level of German in you. So she was quite good at being quite indirect.

Jordan:
I think so, yeah. Which is probably again inefficient but adjusted for the Australian culture.

Charlie:
Yeah. Because she met you in your home.

Jordan:
Yeah, that's right. So she was aware of I guess how we.

Charlie:
Yeah. Yeah. And her parents? Because this was something that we found really funny when it was a British girl dating a German guy. And they'd go on holiday with his parents, and then there would be that moment where people would be naked, and then they would expect the girl to be naked, and she'd be like, absolutely not. I'm not going to be naked right now.

Jordan:
I don't think I. I never went to any spas or or, um outdoor parks.

Charlie:
But like yeah. Even like a lake for the summer.

Jordan:
Yeah. I think I was lucky that that we didn't go to any of those destinations. There was never that expectation.

Charlie:
Yeah, her parents didn't get naked in front of you?

Jordan:
No. Fortunately not.

Charlie:
And how did living in these countries, perhaps just Germany? Or maybe when you visited other ones, how did it change your perception of Australian culture?

Jordan:
Well, I guess it really highlights. Yeah. These little differences or big differences actually. It makes you realise what we do wrong here or what we do inefficiently or poorly here. And, and I guess when you do travel or you do live overseas, often you'll focus on what great things they have there that you don't have. And really soak it up as much as possible. An example would be when I'm in Germany, I would make sure I drink a lot of beer because the beer is cheap. It's fantastic.

Charlie:
I'm sleeping on that door and I'm having a litre of cheap beer.

Jordan:
Or the cheeses. Um, just world class cheese, for example. I'd be in France, and the cheese is great and it's very cheap, whereas in Australia it would be four times the cost and not nearly as good. Um, and so those little things that you'd really take away from that particular place and then also how the society functions. So I mentioned in Europe I was amazed at the public transport, the bike paths, the bike lanes, how the busy cities would be feel really close and and accessible because everyone lives within the city centre, which is a small space. So I'm thinking, for example, um, the Netherlands, they're quite densely populated cities. Everyone lives in apartments, whereas Australia is really spread out, really sprawling. Most houses have a backyard, a front yard, and that just takes up so much space.

Charlie:
Mhm.

Jordan:
Whereas the European cities are much more tightly packed. And so the scale of living and the accessibility to cinemas or bars, it's all within a short walk or a short bike ride. In Australia you need to jump in the car and drive 10/15 minutes to get to the closest supermarket. And it's just not a nice scale of living in Australia. And so by living in these different countries, you really see what you like about it, what you don't like about Australia, and you wish that we could take some of those features and have them here. I think it's nice. Um, for example, again, going back to Salzburg, where I was studying in a castle from the 1300s, and, you know, those the, the same walls, the same same floor, the same ceiling is beautifully decorated. Whereas my university in Australia was just a new building maybe eight years old or something like that, and it just doesn't have that same sense of history and and beauty.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
Um, yeah. So that's something I really, really missed about living in Europe.

Charlie:
Yeah. We didn't actually touch on much on English people. What do you feel towards British culture?

Jordan:
Well, to be honest, I think Australian culture, because we've come from the British culture, there is a lot of familiarity and similarities and so naturally it feels very familiar.

Charlie:
Mhm.

Jordan:
And I think Australia is maybe halfway between British and American. We have a lot of crossover between British culture and American culture. And we someway somehow fit in between the two. I think when I'm visiting England I feel at home, I guess again because a lot of the history has come from there. I'm aware of British traditions or cultural traditions like the pub, the British pub or the food that's eaten. And it feels familiar, even though it's, it is different. It does in some way feel quite familiar.

Charlie:
Yeah. You've been labelled as a posh Aussie before.

Jordan:
Who's, who has labelled me as a posh Aussie? I've never thought of myself as a posh Aussie.

Charlie:
Your, um, your partner.

Jordan:
Okay.

Charlie:
You don't think that.

Jordan:
I never thought of myself as a posh Aussie.

Charlie:
I mean, it goes. It's interesting because you've got the the no shoe sleep on a door kind of vibe.

Jordan:
Yeah.

Charlie:
But you've also got the slightly more cultured, less, um, crazy Aussie accent as well.

Jordan:
Okay, I get where you're coming from.

Charlie:
So that's where I feel like you might feel more at home in the UK.

Jordan:
Maybe. I mean, there is the typical Aussie, which is, you know, certain accent, very hard Australian accent, which I don't have. Um, and you know, they probably drink more beer than I do. I don't go fishing. But that would be the classic Australian, I guess.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And so I guess there are, there are some features that I don't quite relate to.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
So I think you're you probably are right. And maybe that is does make me feel more at home in the UK.

Charlie:
Did you live in the UK ever?

Jordan:
Yeah I did for about two years in London.

Charlie:
Oh yeah. Yeah yeah. In Hackney?

Jordan:
That's right.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you like that?

Jordan:
Yeah, I loved it.

Charlie:
You loved it. Yeah.

Jordan:
Yeah I again I think coming from Australia to a huge international city where you, there's something for everyone, you know, if you like poetry and you like crocheting, there will be a poetry crochet club where people will be knitting and doing beat slam poetry.

Charlie:
I'd like to go to this club. Yeah. The biggest thing I find people talking about, like when you're going to live in London, is like how connected your hometown is to the rest of London, because, like, it normally takes over an hour to get to a friend if you all live in London, which seems crazy to me, having lived in smaller places and having come from Sydney, I didn't really think of it as being a thing. Like I was like, oh come on, if we live in London, we'll be able to see each other. But it really was, it now is a big factor for me, like how connected your neighbourhood is.

Jordan:
Well, even having said that, I, I think that my sense of time was very different in London. I wouldn't think twice to travel an hour and 20 minutes on a Tuesday night after work, to go to a friend's place for dinner.

Charlie:
It's strange, this isn't it?

Jordan:
Whereas now I'm like, no way. Maybe on the weekend I'll come to visit you if I have to travel one hour, 20 minutes, but in London it was just what's done.

Charlie:
Yeah, because the distance is so little. Like an hour takes you probably ten miles. But that would be going from Sydney to Central Coast pretty much, which is very far.

Jordan:
Exactly. A whole, another city away.

Charlie:
Yeah. So it feels bigger or it feels a bigger effort. Even though it's the same amount of time.

Jordan:
Exactly. It's it's strange. It's it's like. Yeah, I think because everyone relies on the, the tube, the, the transport transport network in, in London. Everyone accepts that that's the time it takes to travel. Whereas yeah, it just seems like a bit more of an effort here in Australia where you have to jump in the car yourself. And you're, you're the one doing the driving.

Charlie:
Yeah. I think that's that's spot on actually. I just wanted to go back to the, the thought you had about how direct your boss was in Germany. Um, do you, do you feel like you overcame that shock of how direct she was? Did you get used to it, or was there a way that you felt like you could adapt to their culture their way of being?

Jordan:
I think it was just with time, time and also awareness that this is how they are or this is how people are, this is how they talk to one another. It's nothing personal. It's nothing about you. It's just the culture.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And once you understand that, I think quickly you learn and quickly you become used to it. And then maybe even quickly, you start to take it on board. And, you know, within that work setting, I would be more direct.

Charlie:
Ahha. I was going to say, did it change your personality slightly?

Jordan:
Not with my friends, but I think definitely in the workspace it did.

Charlie:
Aha.

Jordan:
And then suddenly I felt like I was becoming more productive and I get more work done.

Charlie:
It's satisfying that, isn't it? Yeah, I've got that experience with someone else on Skype and they're IT. And if I ever have a problem, they just, they just say 'checking'. Like if I ask a problem, they say 'checking' nothing else. And then they say the problem has been solved and that's it.

Jordan:
And that's all you need.

Charlie:
Yeah. And now I sometimes say checking to Stacey and she's like, do we have this? And like she's out at the supermarket I literally say checking.

Jordan:
Well the the other the older way would have been excuse me or hi, how are you today. Just wondering if it's not too much of a bother, would you be able to do this and that's so many words. It takes such a long time.

Charlie:
Yeah, and time is money and the world is getting faster and faster. And so it feels right.

Jordan:
Yeah. Maybe it's the way we're all going. We're all becoming German.

Charlie:
Ooh. So it's time to reflect upon your time in Europe. Have you learned anything about yourself and the world through your travels and living abroad?

Jordan:
It's a long, evolving, gradual process, I think. Yeah. You travel to a new place, you take onboard that culture. You learn about the history and the food, and then it sort of becomes part of you. And I guess it expands your personality. It's a little by little process, I think.

Charlie:
And does it feel like you have this added confidence in not worldly conversations? I mean, yeah, if those conversations come up that talk about those areas that you've lived in, you probably feel very confident in the knowledge that you've got. But I don't know, sometimes Aussies, they look at Europe and think how cultured that place is and how far away we are. Do you do you have like this inner confidence now that you're, you know more about what people around you might not know?

Jordan:
Yeah, I guess so. I think Australia is quite a well travelled country these days.

Charlie:
Um, Australia is a well travelled country. You mean the people in Australia travel quite far and wide?

Jordan:
Yeah I think so.

Charlie:
Yeah they do. Yeah.

Jordan:
There's really high um, passport ownerships, uh, compared to, say, a country like America, there's not people don't not that many people own a passport in America for example. Whereas Australia. Most Australians will have spent a lot of time overseas.

Charlie:
And it's also quite, um, encouraged to go abroad to go to Europe as well, isn't it?

Jordan:
Yeah, I think so. As a young person finishing high school and particularly that, uh, transition from high school into university or university before starting a career, it's almost encouraged to spend some time overseas, living in a different culture. Maybe it's also the tie to the UK, but a lot of Australians do spend 1 or 2 years living in the UK. Uh, it's quite common.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
I think having lived overseas and got to know so many other countries, I'm able to connect, at least on a superficial level, with a lot of other people. You know, I'm, I might meet someone from Slovakia, and I'll have been to their capital city and I can talk about, you know, my favourite features there, or the quirky little supermarkets. And even that it helps you connect to someone you've just met. I think that gives you a level of confidence. But I guess, you know, we were talking about the nudity in Germany. I haven't quite developed that confidence yet.

Charlie:
Yeah. As soon as you see a German, you just get naked.

Jordan:
As soon as I'm in a park.

Charlie:
Does this make you feel at home? No I don't want you arrested. Nice. Okay. And probably end on this one. Uh, do you have any advice for others who are interested in experiencing different cultures?

Jordan:
Well, I guess to really experience it, you need time there. And so however it is that you're able to maximise that time. So, for example, you could sleep on a door, try to save money where possible. That would give you more time to experience that country and that culture. That would be one would be the starting place. But secondly, I think you absolutely you need to meet the locals and be receptive to them and get to know them and be willing to learn from them.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you do couch surfing?

Jordan:
Only I think twice. Only twice.

Charlie:
Okay. Were they positive experiences?

Jordan:
Actually, you know what, I don't think I have couch surfed. I've hosted couch surfing.

Charlie:
Uh huh.

Jordan:
Um, but I've never done it myself because I'd meet people along the way. So, for example, living in or staying in a hostel in a, in a town, there'd be other travellers from the next city down or another country, and you get to know each other, you swap details and they'd say, ah, if you're passing through such and such town, send me a message. I've got a spare bedroom, I've got a spare couch. And then you take him up on that. So that's probably some. A word of advice is be careful offering your hospitality to an Australian because they'll probably take you up on it.

Charlie:
That's good. Be advised not to invite an Aussie unless you really mean it.

Jordan:
Yeah, exactly.

Charlie:
Yeah. Alright. Well, I think we'll leave it there. Thank you very much for sharing your experience in Europe and Australia. And now we're we're back in Australia. You moved back to Sydney and you're you're now a qualified doctor.

Jordan:
Yeah I am. It's pretty bizarre to think that, you know, going from door sleeping to offering medical advice and treatments. It's it's a bit of a change.

Charlie:
It is. Yeah. But you're enjoying your experience as a doctor?

Jordan:
Yeah. It's it's it's nice I guess I would you know, we're talking about the unsettled travelling life where you're always moving. It's nice to now have some stability and some regular Monday to Friday job that I can rely on.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And a bit of money that helps too.

Charlie:
Yeah, definitely. Well, thank you very much, Jordan.

Jordan:
Welcome! It was a pleasure. Thank you, Charlie.

Charlie:
Well done guys for listening to the end of this episode. We will see you next week on the British English Podcast. Bye bye, Jordan.

Jordan:
Bye, Charlie. Thank you.

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Transcript of Premium Bonus 055- Transcript

Charlie:
Hello or g'day from Down Under as I am back in Sydney baby! Feeling smug that I managed to escape the worst of the winter in the UK as my cousin very kindly offered to put us up for the majority of our stay. To put somebody up a phrasal verb which means to accommodate them or to host them. And so as my wife Stacey and I are now both working for ourselves and are remote based, we were able to do what I've been dreaming of doing since I was 18, which was to pack up our laptops when the thermostat hits zero, chase the sun, and plop the laptops back down, gently of course, in a place boasting 30°C. And you know what? It could be my imagination. But I feel like my British friends, and certainly my family members, are not wanting to talk to me as much right now. Again, they probably don't have the headspace to even, you know, care. But I kind of feel like I've abandoned them in battle, having walked off just when the enemy are about to attack. Because, you know, the magic of Christmas gets Brits through the first half of the winter. But when January comes, we all get a bit sad, and it's not until March that we start to smile again. So I do feel a bit like a traitor.

Charlie:
But I'm also loving the sun. I guess that tells you something about my moral fibre. But anyway, as I mentioned, my cousin has put us up for 2 to 3 weeks and as I managed to travel with my microphones despite security at the airport accusing me of owning some rather aggressive looking sex toys, um, you know, through the lens of an x ray machine, a microphone looks pretty suspect. But I was able to get through and then whip them out in Sydney and record a conversation with my cousin. He's actually my second cousin, which means we don't share a grandparent, but we do share a great grandparent. And I felt like you would enjoy hearing about his journey, as he has lived in the UK, in London and has travelled around the British Isles and all over Europe really for the majority of his 20s. So he's had the ability to compare and contrast cultures as an outsider, being that he was born and raised in Australia, and he also shares a brilliant story about how he managed to keep his cost of living down when he was backpacking at one point. So, um, yes, sit back, relax, get the kettle on, and get ready to enjoy a conversation with my cousin from Down Under called Jordan.

Charlie:
Hello, Jordan.

Jordan:
Hello, Charlie.

Charlie:
How are you going?

Jordan:
I'm going well.

Charlie:
Yeah? Because in England. Do you know what we would say instead of how are you going?

Jordan:
Uh, in London, I hear them say, alright!

Charlie:
Yeah, alright, mate.

Jordan:
Alright, mate.

Charlie:
So you're doing well today, though.

Jordan:
I'm doing well.

Charlie:
Yeah. Nice. It's a hot one today, isn't it?

Jordan:
Yeah it was 37 degrees today, so it's pretty, pretty hot even for, um Australia standards it was pretty warm.

Charlie:
Yeah. You don't get too many of them in the summer do you?

Jordan:
No, uh, we probably I think this was the, the hottest day in about four years.

Charlie:
Oh, really?

Jordan:
Yeah.

Charlie:
Wow. So I've come from England and it was the winter, so it was zero degrees when we left, and it was minus five when we landed here. Obviously didn't get to experience that, but it's gone from 0 to 37 pretty quickly for me. And I've actually got blisters on my hand. I think they're heat blisters and I keep popping them. It's a bit disgusting for everyone, but yeah. So, um, we're in a different climate for me, but we're here to talk about your experience abroad. But before that, can you tell us a little bit about yourself, um, and, and your experience in Australia?

Jordan:
Sure. Well, I guess I am Australian. I was born here. Um, so I was born in a little town called Byron Bay, which is quite famous on the the backpacker travel route around Australia.

Charlie:
Absolutely.

Jordan:
So it's on the east, the most easterly point of Australia, so juts out into the Pacific Ocean. Um, the whales that travel up and down the east coast in winter past that point. And because it's the really juts out there, they pass quite close to the land. And so every winter there's a big display of whales as they pass by. So that brings a lot of the tourists. Um, but also it's big on the backpacker trail. So usually we get British, German, Dutch and more recently Venezuelans, South American, uh, travellers who come to... Argentinian, who come to Australia, they spend usually they plan to spend a week in Byron Bay but end up staying for a month or even a year.

Charlie:
And so you would mingle with those tourists and those backpackers regularly?

Jordan:
Yeah, as a teenager, just coming out of high school and then turning 18, which is the age that you can drink alcohol, go to bars, go to pubs. Uh, that's when I would interact with them more.

Charlie:
Right.

Jordan:
Because, you know, they're usually 18, 19. They've just finished high school in their own country.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And they're travelling around Australia.

Charlie:
Uh huh.

Jordan:
And so that was usually when we'd first meet them.

Charlie:
Yes. And, uh, did you notice a difference between certain cultures and how receptive they were to you as an Aussie?

Jordan:
Um, when I was also at a bar or a pub, they'd be pretty eager to meet a local Byron Bay person.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you have a surfboard under your armpit?

Jordan:
Sometimes. Not at the pub, but, you know, sometimes. And that would be. I guess that's a good, um, uh, conversation starter.

Charlie:
Yes, definitely. I mean, you started the conversation with us when we landed saying that you've got two paddleboards. I feel like that would have been your. I've got a surfboard. Do you want to come over?

Jordan:
That was exactly my pick up line.

Charlie:
Nice. So Byron Bay but we're in Sydney right now. So you've spent some time in Sydney obviously.

Jordan:
I've been in Sydney for six years now.

Charlie:
Right.

Jordan:
Um, I guess as it's a big, as a, the largest city in Australia. It's the big drawcard. It attracts people for work, for study, for um, culture, the museums, the galleries. That's why people come to Sydney. Uh, it's also a beautiful city. It's right on the harbour. Uh, nice beaches, nice ocean. Good. Good weather, good climate.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
It's a pretty attractive place to to come to live.

Charlie:
Yeah. I have fallen in love with it for its beauty and for climate. Um, does it make you miss Byron? Because Byron's a bit of a different lifestyle.

Jordan:
Yeah, it's very different to Byron Bay. It's, um, Byron Bay has a much slower pace of life. Sydney is more busy. Hustle, bustle, uh, the big city life. Byron Bay it's quieter. The tallest buildings may be three storeys tall, so it has a much more relaxed feel.

Charlie:
And, uh, in Byron, you don't have to wear shoes.

Jordan:
Yeah. It'd be strange to see someone with shoes on.

Charlie:
Did you not wear shoes?

Jordan:
Never.

Charlie:
Really?

Jordan:
Never. I hated wearing shoes. And it was a point of pride to not wear shoes when you go to the supermarket or go to the shops.

Charlie:
Wow. What about a tourist coming through like a German backpacker? Would they? Would they wear shoes?

Jordan:
Yeah, usually. I think because it's unusual for them to not wear shoes in public in a shop.

Charlie:
Almost that's a tell of who's local.

Jordan:
In a way. Yeah. Yeah.

Charlie:
Fascinating. Yeah. Okay. And you did Brisbane. You lived in Brisbane for a bit. That's where I stayed with you.

Jordan:
Four years in Brisbane. Um, that was for university. Again Byron Bay, just its location, uh, northern New South Wales. So that's sort of halfway up the country on the east coast. The closest large city is Brisbane. And so naturally, people, after they finish high school go into university. The closest for university would be Brisbane.

Charlie:
Yeah. Yeah that's a difference in the UK that you may already be aware of, that we kind of go all over the country for university and we stay there. Well you, no you actually did a fairly similar situation because you lived with some uni mates didn't you?

Jordan:
I think in the UK it's very common to go to another city to study in a completely different city to where you grew up. Australia people tend to either stay at home with their parents because the cost of living is so expensive. The cost of renting, um, usually people would stay in their own city and study in that city, or travel not too far to the closest large city or or where there's the closest university.

Charlie:
Yeah. Another thing is that we really think about the university and the degree, like the matching up of the respect of that school and the, the education that you're getting. So like Stacey, Nottingham was very, very sought after for arts in general. Um, obviously you've got the Oxfords and Cambridge, but like, you know, you would, you would really think about what you're studying and what is the best school in your country for that thing. Is that a thing majorly here or not?

Jordan:
No, I'd say not. Each university probably has the same subjects, so and they're all more or less equally known for or renowned for for that particular subject.

Charlie:
Interesting.

Jordan:
Less, less of an emphasis on that in Australia than probably the UK.

Charlie:
Right. What did you study?

Jordan:
So in Brisbane I studied what was called a Bachelor of Arts. The majors were criminology and international relations.

Charlie:
Ah! Did not know that.

Jordan:
And that was immediately after high school. I wasn't quite sure what I wanted to study, but they sounded very interesting and they were very interesting subjects.

Charlie:
Ah okay!

Jordan:
That was my bachelor.

Charlie:
Yeah. Criminology. Yeah, I did not. I did not know that about you. Or maybe you told me when we were in your uni digs.

Jordan:
Maybe.

Charlie:
But the geckos distracted me somewhat, dropping from the ceiling and everyone's like, ah. I'm like ah, um, criminology. Okay. And then after that you pivoted somewhat?

Jordan:
I did. So I after that I studied law, or at least a, uh, what's it's called a masters of applied law.

Charlie:
Right.

Jordan:
So it wouldn't allow me to practice law, but it would give me a foundation, an understanding of law. So I studied that again in Brisbane. Yeah, but six of those months I did in Austria, in Salzburg.

Charlie:
Aha. And was that the first exposure to living abroad?

Jordan:
Uh, I travelled when I was younger, abroad, but that was the first experience living in the same place, in the same town and really immersing myself in that local culture.

Charlie:
How was that experience?

Jordan:
It was good. It was again, I'd come from Australian summer and arrived in Austria in winter. So like you, your experience of cold to hot was the reverse.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
So scorching hot summer right into a freezing subzero Austrian winter.

Charlie:
Yeah. And mentally that for me it was going from depressed to very happy. Was yours the opposite?

Jordan:
No, I think there's always, um. It's always exciting when you go somewhere new.

Charlie:
Yeah, that's true.

Jordan:
Even if it's cold and dark, it's still exciting and different.

Charlie:
Yeah, yeah, yeah, that's true. And also, I guess, correct me if I'm wrong, but Australians have a sort of romantic association with the cold and like snow?

Jordan:
Yeah, absolutely. I think there's always that sort of, you know, Christmas time we don't experience cold snow. So we have this sort of idealised fantasy, um, fairytale view of winter.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
But to be honest, Austria lived up to that fairytale expectation.

Charlie:
Nice.

Jordan:
You know, it's, um, it's a very beautiful area. Lots of snow, beautiful mountains. And. Yeah, I think it did kind of match up to that, that idealised expectation.

Charlie:
Yeah. In Germany we had the German markets around Christmas time. Did they have good markets?

Jordan:
Yeah they did. And there's also, I can't remember the name of the festival where, um, people wear scary costumes with big horns, hairy outfits, and they walk around the streets and scare children.

Charlie:
I'll Google it. Krampus?

Jordan:
That's it. Yeah.

Charlie:
Tourists in Austria have been shocked by a terrifying Christmas tradition, where people dress up as Krampus and run through the streets with sticks. Krampus? Is that, um, Santa Claus? Is that?

Jordan:
No, I don't know what its background is. Um, but it's definitely terrifying.

Charlie:
Wow. So that was oh my gosh! That is horrific. I'm looking at an incredibly scary mask of a man that's got, like, vampire teeth on steroids and a moulding face and huge horns.

Jordan:
And I think the, um, the scarier the costume, the better. So they, the participants try to outdo the others with the most scary costume.

Charlie:
Did you get involved?

Jordan:
I got scared, yeah, I guess that's getting involved.

Charlie:
Yeah, but that was very early on in your experience yeah. Just a spectator perhaps? Any other memorable experiences in Salzburg?

Jordan:
Well, I guess coming from Australia, I always focus on the things that are very different to what we have at home. Uh, so the mountains were incredible. The snow, the forests, uh, the old medieval streets and castle overlooking the town.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And just the way that people get about, I guess bicycles, public transport was very efficient. Whereas in Australia, I don't know, it's it's maybe a little bit more like America, where there's a heavy focus on personal cars and travelling by car.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
Whereas in Austria, I was amazed at how effective the buses were and everyone was able to ride around on bicycles.

Charlie:
I can imagine that suiting your personality a bit more. You prefer that?

Jordan:
Yeah, I think so. Definitely, definitely.

Charlie:
Did you have a bike?

Jordan:
Yeah I bought an old €20 second hand bike.

Charlie:
€20. Very nice. So Salzburg. And then what was after that?

Jordan:
So after that I got a job in Australia, which allowed me to work very intensively for three months of the year. So I'd be doing ten hour, 12 hour days for three months of the year in Australia, and then I would use the rest of the year to travel, and I do a little bit of work here and there, a couple of hours per day, five days a week, for example.

Charlie:
Hang on 10 to 12 hour days. That's long. But that's not insane.

Jordan:
No it's not. No. Okay. Sorry.

Charlie:
To do like three months and then have the rest off.

Jordan:
Yeah. It would be seven days a week though. Um. For three months.

Charlie:
Oh, seven days a week.

Jordan:
Yeah. So no rest. For those three months.

Charlie:
That's cramming it in. You liked that approach to life?

Jordan:
Yeah. I like to work hard and then relax.

Charlie:
And then take a long time off. Yeah. So where did you go on the first time where you had the rest of the year off?

Jordan:
I think the first time I went overseas was to the UK. I spent some time in Northern Ireland, in Scotland and down in England.

Charlie:
Right. Quite a few variations in the way that the people speak and behave. Did you, did you notice any preferences?

Jordan:
Yeah. In fact I'd probably say the Scottish were, were more friendly or at least open than the English to meeting new people. And then the Irish even more so.

Charlie:
Ah!

Jordan:
The Northern Irish were very friendly.

Charlie:
Yeah. They take well to Aussies?

Jordan:
Yeah, I think so. Yeah, I think so. I think, um, as an Australian, you're quite a novelty over there.

Charlie:
Uh huh. Okay. So you experienced those three countries and then did you go to the mainland much in that stint?

Jordan:
Yeah so I did spend quite a bit of time in, in Germany.

Charlie:
What was the reason that you went from the UK or the British Isles to then?

Jordan:
Well, I guess what took me to Europe in the first place was I met a, um, a girl in Australia.

Charlie:
Oh!

Jordan:
A German who of course was travelling in Australia, and that's what motivated me to go to Europe in the first place.

Charlie:
Did you meet her in Byron when you had a...

Jordan:
That's right. I had a surfboard under my arm.

Charlie:
Is that how you met her?

Jordan:
Not quite, but the next time I met her, I did have a surfboard under my arm. I think that's what cemented it.

Charlie:
And I met her. Right?

Jordan:
You did. Yes. Yeah you did. Lara. Lara you did.

Charlie:
Lara. I was about to say Lana. But Lara. Yeah. Yeah.

Jordan:
In Brisbane you met her.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
And maybe even in the UK.

Charlie:
Yeah. Yeah, I think so. Yeah. So you were with her for quite a few years.

Jordan:
Yeah, a number of years. Yeah. I think six years or so. Yeah.

Charlie:
Yeah right. Okay. So she took you to Germany.

Jordan:
That's right.

Charlie:
Where in Germany?

Jordan:
So I was living in Berlin for the majority, but then we did a lot of travel around as well. And I lived in Munich for some time. Uh, and Germany's, it's fairly small country by Australian standards, but really different within that small space. The people in Germany are quite different from north to south, east to west. There's a lot of variation within Germany within such a small area.

Charlie:
Okay. For example?

Jordan:
Well, I guess the lower down in the south, close to Bavaria, which is similar to Austria in terms of their attitudes. And then you go further north to Berlin, where it's a bit more, I guess it's a bit more open. People are more familiar with people from overseas in a city like Berlin, which is a big capital, uh, whereas Salzburg, they're not as used to foreign people. And so it was a little bit harder, I think, to make friends in that sort of area compared to Berlin, which is a very open big city.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you spend much time down there in Bavaria?

Jordan:
Down south? I did, yeah. And my initial thought was that it was a more closed conservative society.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
Uh, but then I think it's just it takes a bit of time to get to know people. Once you know them there, they open up more. And it's easier to make friends once you get to know them. But it can take a little bit of time.

Charlie:
Yes. And did you speak any German while you were there?

Jordan:
I tried to learn a little. I wasn't the best, but I think by by learning a little and, and by making that effort, that really helps as well. That opens, opens up.

Charlie:
Did you manage to get to like almost conversational?

Jordan:
No.

Charlie:
No?

Jordan:
Ah. Very limited conversation within specific contexts. I could have a conversation.

Charlie:
A great listener.

Jordan:
Yeah. Exactly.

Charlie:
Nice. So you spent quite a few years in Germany and then you travelled around outside of Germany throughout those years, yeah?

Jordan:
So the way that I could stay in Europe for as long as I did was by hopping from country to country and taking out a working holiday visa.

Charlie:
In those in those neighbouring countries?

Jordan:
Mhm. That's right. So as an Australian we had access to German, Dutch, UK, Irish working holiday visas, and by renewing each year I'd get a different visa. They'd only last for a year. I'd get a new one each year, and that would allow me to stay in Europe for longer than I would otherwise be able to if I was just a tourist.

Charlie:
Uh huh. Yeah. And in that moment, were you thinking, I assume the answer is no, but were you thinking what the long term solution would be?

Jordan:
Answer's no. No, I was definitely I didn't have a long term plan in mind.

Charlie:
Yeah. Fair enough. At that age, you were like, what, 23, 24?

Jordan:
Would've been from yeah, age 23 to 27 or so.

Charlie:
Yeah. What led you back to Australia?

Jordan:
Well I guess eventually I had to ask myself that question. What is the long term plan?

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And, um, I could see that it was not a long term sustainable plan. Eventually it is easier to have roots and establish yourself in a particular location. That definitely does make things easier and more sustainable. It would be difficult to continually jump from country to country.

Charlie:
Mm. When you were jumping from country to country, I imagine your your trips that you were experiencing, they weren't quite the typical sort of hotel by the pool, all inclusive kind of thing? I imagine you liked the backpacker kind of lifestyle.

Jordan:
Well, yes, in a way, but also to travel for that long and to live overseas for that long when you're not earning very much money, you are forced to find the cheapest options and the cheaper alternatives to, uh, cook your own meals, eat out, and would be only on very special occasions. And even then it would be the most cheap places that you could find. Also, I was lucky that I had a lot of cousins or distant cousins, or even people who I'd met while travelling who kindly would offer a bedroom or a couch for a couple of weeks. And so by going from the kind hospitality of of someone that you'd met recently or a family member, I was able to stretch out my travel longer than I otherwise would've. And I guess it is. It is also an exciting way to travel rather than staying in fancy hotels all the time.

Charlie:
Definitely. When you look back at those memories, I know there's a lot of years that you packed in there, but are there any that stand out to you that you were particularly thrifty with some of the trips you were like quite proud of how how you managed to get by on in one moment on such a small amount of money?

Jordan:
Well, yes. I mean, I don't know if other people would consider them to be proud moments. But for example, I remember being in Montenegro, uh, city called Kotor, which I arrived very late at night on the bus and I thought I could find a cheap hostel, but unfortunately they were all closed. The only places still open were expensive hotels. And I went into one and I asked the price and it was very expensive. And I asked him, oh, is there anything cheaper? Even a broom closet, for example. And he said, no.

Charlie:
This is like the modern day Joseph and Mary story, isn't it?

Jordan:
I said, I have, I have €30. Would that be enough for the cheapest room? And he said, no, for €30 you can sleep on the street. And I thought, hmm, you know what, I will. So then I walked around the city and I found a, um, an old abandoned house. And it was being, I think there was, it was in the process of being repaired. So there was some cement bags, some doors that were yet to be placed on the house. And I found an a new door. So it was clean new timber door, which was yet to be put on, to be placed on into the door frame.

Charlie:
Right.

Jordan:
So it was laying flat on the on the floor and I thought, oh, this looks like a comfortable bed for at least one night.

Charlie:
What? The door.

Jordan:
The door. So yeah, I slept on the door.

Charlie:
Wait, I thought you were gonna say you propped the door up and you made it, like, sealed. So you had a house.

Jordan:
Okay, okay. No I slept

Charlie:
So you slept.

Jordan:
On the door.

Charlie:
Out. Was this winter?

Jordan:
No, it was. It was summer, I think. It wasn't too cold. I did need a jacket to be. I placed a jacket over myself for a blanket.

Charlie:
You used a door, that's great! What about did you pay that hotel manager €30?

Jordan:
No, no. I put the €30 back in my pocket and walked out of there. And then I found the...

Charlie:
The door.

Jordan:
The door. I actually placed, because I was... There wasn't a door on this house. I was a bit worried that someone in the middle of the night could just walk in, so I just put two sticks across the doorway so that if somebody were to walk through, they would knock the sticks and I'd wake up and and then I could run away.

Charlie:
Oh, okay. So the door, it was in the house. It wasn't on the side.

Jordan:
In the house. Yeah.

Charlie:
Okay.

Jordan:
Inside the house.

Charlie:
So the door.. The the house didn't have a door on it. It was, it had sandbags and it was dark. So you were, you're like oh what's going on in here. You walked in and you saw the door and you're like that's a nice door that could make a comfortable bed.

Jordan:
Exactly.

Charlie:
And it was made of wood?

Jordan:
It was a wooden door. It was.

Charlie:
But doors are normally quite like. They've got a lot of engravings normally?

Jordan:
A regular surface, no this was a smooth, smooth door.

Charlie:
It was a smooth door! I like your thinking. Yeah. Did you have a pillow?

Jordan:
I used, um, some clothes as a pillow.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you get some sleep?

Jordan:
Yeah, some sleep. But during the middle of the night, I heard a noise.

Charlie:
The sticks!

Jordan:
The sticks falling. And I freaked out thinking, oh, my goodness, someone's coming in. But, um. And I woke in a panic, but looked up and there was a cat coming through the door.

Charlie:
Oh. Where was the owner if there was a cat.

Jordan:
I think it was just a... The town cat.

Charlie:
The town cat. Yeah. Fair enough. That's hilarious. Right. What country? Where was that?

Jordan:
This was in Montenegro.

Charlie:
Okay. Um, I've got a question here. What were some of the most striking cultural differences you noticed in the European countries you lived in?

Jordan:
I guess, um, it's always something that you take for granted in the country that you come from. And then you see how people live differently overseas. And it's always quite a shock.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
For me, when I went to Austria for the first time, I was amazed at the nudity of people in gyms, pools, parks.

Charlie:
When you say gyms, you mean in the locker room, right?

Jordan:
The locker room. Yeah. Not not on the gym floor. In the locker room, in parks, there's a lot of nudity. And whereas in Australia, people, they would have a quick shower and then get dressed quite quickly. They would try to limit their nudity as much as possible. Whereas in Austria it seemed that they would brush their teeth, then they'd brush their hair, then they would spray on their deodorant, and the very last thing they would do is put their underwear on.

Charlie:
Yeah, yeah, I noticed that too. But I started to relish the comfort of that. And by the end of the three year stint I was in Nuremberg, I felt like kind of at that level. And then I came to Australia and I felt that confidence, and I was doing it in like a on the side of the beach kind of changing area. And I realised that people were thinking I was really weird because I was quite naked for a long time. So then I started to shift and, and since then I've kind of forgotten about that comfort. Did you get comfortable with the nudity or did you...

Jordan:
I don't think I ever did no.

Charlie:
No?

Jordan:
It's such a strange concept in in compared to Australia. Very reserved conservative society I guess here.

Charlie:
Yeah, yeah.

Jordan:
I guess another thing I noticed was the this is a German example is how direct people are with their thoughts and how they would tell you what they think, which can come across as rude initially.

Charlie:
To an Aussie?

Jordan:
Yes. Or probably a Brit as well. Um, the way that they give feedback. So the example that I'm thinking is when I was working in Germany, I was working for a cosmetics company, just working in IT, so just on their computers.

Charlie:
Uh huh.

Jordan:
And my supervisor gave me some feedback, and I don't remember the exact specifics, but I remember thinking, oh my goodness, she hates me. She she's so critical. She's telling me how bad I am.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And I found that quite shocking. But then I came to realise that it's just how they speak their mind. It's normal.

Charlie:
How did you realise that she didn't hate you?

Jordan:
Because she was still nice to me later. She just gave me some very direct feedback.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
Which coming from probably a British or Australian cultural background being as direct as that would be considered rude.

Charlie:
Mm.

Jordan:
Whereas in the German culture it's just speaking their mind or speaking their truth.

Charlie:
Yeah. Being efficient as well.

Jordan:
Exactly.

Charlie:
Yeah. So did you feel that in your relationship at all with Lara?

Jordan:
Um. No. I think she was probably aware of the indirect Australian approach. I think she was very good at not being direct.

Charlie:
Yeah?

Jordan:
So maybe she was adjusting for me.

Charlie:
Okay, I remember, so I was 19 and I came to see you in Brisbane, and she was living with you at the time.

Jordan:
Yeah.

Charlie:
And I just remember I have a very distinct memory of whenever like she would disagree with you or something. She was very good at English, but she would go back to her German and she would just shout at you. Nein!

Jordan:
Yes, that's true. But at least I understood what that meant.

Charlie:
You had that level of German in you. So she was quite good at being quite indirect.

Jordan:
I think so, yeah. Which is probably again inefficient but adjusted for the Australian culture.

Charlie:
Yeah. Because she met you in your home.

Jordan:
Yeah, that's right. So she was aware of I guess how we.

Charlie:
Yeah. Yeah. And her parents? Because this was something that we found really funny when it was a British girl dating a German guy. And they'd go on holiday with his parents, and then there would be that moment where people would be naked, and then they would expect the girl to be naked, and she'd be like, absolutely not. I'm not going to be naked right now.

Jordan:
I don't think I. I never went to any spas or or, um outdoor parks.

Charlie:
But like yeah. Even like a lake for the summer.

Jordan:
Yeah. I think I was lucky that that we didn't go to any of those destinations. There was never that expectation.

Charlie:
Yeah, her parents didn't get naked in front of you?

Jordan:
No. Fortunately not.

Charlie:
And how did living in these countries, perhaps just Germany? Or maybe when you visited other ones, how did it change your perception of Australian culture?

Jordan:
Well, I guess it really highlights. Yeah. These little differences or big differences actually. It makes you realise what we do wrong here or what we do inefficiently or poorly here. And, and I guess when you do travel or you do live overseas, often you'll focus on what great things they have there that you don't have. And really soak it up as much as possible. An example would be when I'm in Germany, I would make sure I drink a lot of beer because the beer is cheap. It's fantastic.

Charlie:
I'm sleeping on that door and I'm having a litre of cheap beer.

Jordan:
Or the cheeses. Um, just world class cheese, for example. I'd be in France, and the cheese is great and it's very cheap, whereas in Australia it would be four times the cost and not nearly as good. Um, and so those little things that you'd really take away from that particular place and then also how the society functions. So I mentioned in Europe I was amazed at the public transport, the bike paths, the bike lanes, how the busy cities would be feel really close and and accessible because everyone lives within the city centre, which is a small space. So I'm thinking, for example, um, the Netherlands, they're quite densely populated cities. Everyone lives in apartments, whereas Australia is really spread out, really sprawling. Most houses have a backyard, a front yard, and that just takes up so much space.

Charlie:
Mhm.

Jordan:
Whereas the European cities are much more tightly packed. And so the scale of living and the accessibility to cinemas or bars, it's all within a short walk or a short bike ride. In Australia you need to jump in the car and drive 10/15 minutes to get to the closest supermarket. And it's just not a nice scale of living in Australia. And so by living in these different countries, you really see what you like about it, what you don't like about Australia, and you wish that we could take some of those features and have them here. I think it's nice. Um, for example, again, going back to Salzburg, where I was studying in a castle from the 1300s, and, you know, those the, the same walls, the same same floor, the same ceiling is beautifully decorated. Whereas my university in Australia was just a new building maybe eight years old or something like that, and it just doesn't have that same sense of history and and beauty.

Charlie:
Yes.

Jordan:
Um, yeah. So that's something I really, really missed about living in Europe.

Charlie:
Yeah. We didn't actually touch on much on English people. What do you feel towards British culture?

Jordan:
Well, to be honest, I think Australian culture, because we've come from the British culture, there is a lot of familiarity and similarities and so naturally it feels very familiar.

Charlie:
Mhm.

Jordan:
And I think Australia is maybe halfway between British and American. We have a lot of crossover between British culture and American culture. And we someway somehow fit in between the two. I think when I'm visiting England I feel at home, I guess again because a lot of the history has come from there. I'm aware of British traditions or cultural traditions like the pub, the British pub or the food that's eaten. And it feels familiar, even though it's, it is different. It does in some way feel quite familiar.

Charlie:
Yeah. You've been labelled as a posh Aussie before.

Jordan:
Who's, who has labelled me as a posh Aussie? I've never thought of myself as a posh Aussie.

Charlie:
Your, um, your partner.

Jordan:
Okay.

Charlie:
You don't think that.

Jordan:
I never thought of myself as a posh Aussie.

Charlie:
I mean, it goes. It's interesting because you've got the the no shoe sleep on a door kind of vibe.

Jordan:
Yeah.

Charlie:
But you've also got the slightly more cultured, less, um, crazy Aussie accent as well.

Jordan:
Okay, I get where you're coming from.

Charlie:
So that's where I feel like you might feel more at home in the UK.

Jordan:
Maybe. I mean, there is the typical Aussie, which is, you know, certain accent, very hard Australian accent, which I don't have. Um, and you know, they probably drink more beer than I do. I don't go fishing. But that would be the classic Australian, I guess.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And so I guess there are, there are some features that I don't quite relate to.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
So I think you're you probably are right. And maybe that is does make me feel more at home in the UK.

Charlie:
Did you live in the UK ever?

Jordan:
Yeah I did for about two years in London.

Charlie:
Oh yeah. Yeah yeah. In Hackney?

Jordan:
That's right.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you like that?

Jordan:
Yeah, I loved it.

Charlie:
You loved it. Yeah.

Jordan:
Yeah I again I think coming from Australia to a huge international city where you, there's something for everyone, you know, if you like poetry and you like crocheting, there will be a poetry crochet club where people will be knitting and doing beat slam poetry.

Charlie:
I'd like to go to this club. Yeah. The biggest thing I find people talking about, like when you're going to live in London, is like how connected your hometown is to the rest of London, because, like, it normally takes over an hour to get to a friend if you all live in London, which seems crazy to me, having lived in smaller places and having come from Sydney, I didn't really think of it as being a thing. Like I was like, oh come on, if we live in London, we'll be able to see each other. But it really was, it now is a big factor for me, like how connected your neighbourhood is.

Jordan:
Well, even having said that, I, I think that my sense of time was very different in London. I wouldn't think twice to travel an hour and 20 minutes on a Tuesday night after work, to go to a friend's place for dinner.

Charlie:
It's strange, this isn't it?

Jordan:
Whereas now I'm like, no way. Maybe on the weekend I'll come to visit you if I have to travel one hour, 20 minutes, but in London it was just what's done.

Charlie:
Yeah, because the distance is so little. Like an hour takes you probably ten miles. But that would be going from Sydney to Central Coast pretty much, which is very far.

Jordan:
Exactly. A whole, another city away.

Charlie:
Yeah. So it feels bigger or it feels a bigger effort. Even though it's the same amount of time.

Jordan:
Exactly. It's it's strange. It's it's like. Yeah, I think because everyone relies on the, the tube, the, the transport transport network in, in London. Everyone accepts that that's the time it takes to travel. Whereas yeah, it just seems like a bit more of an effort here in Australia where you have to jump in the car yourself. And you're, you're the one doing the driving.

Charlie:
Yeah. I think that's that's spot on actually. I just wanted to go back to the, the thought you had about how direct your boss was in Germany. Um, do you, do you feel like you overcame that shock of how direct she was? Did you get used to it, or was there a way that you felt like you could adapt to their culture their way of being?

Jordan:
I think it was just with time, time and also awareness that this is how they are or this is how people are, this is how they talk to one another. It's nothing personal. It's nothing about you. It's just the culture.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And once you understand that, I think quickly you learn and quickly you become used to it. And then maybe even quickly, you start to take it on board. And, you know, within that work setting, I would be more direct.

Charlie:
Ahha. I was going to say, did it change your personality slightly?

Jordan:
Not with my friends, but I think definitely in the workspace it did.

Charlie:
Aha.

Jordan:
And then suddenly I felt like I was becoming more productive and I get more work done.

Charlie:
It's satisfying that, isn't it? Yeah, I've got that experience with someone else on Skype and they're IT. And if I ever have a problem, they just, they just say 'checking'. Like if I ask a problem, they say 'checking' nothing else. And then they say the problem has been solved and that's it.

Jordan:
And that's all you need.

Charlie:
Yeah. And now I sometimes say checking to Stacey and she's like, do we have this? And like she's out at the supermarket I literally say checking.

Jordan:
Well the the other the older way would have been excuse me or hi, how are you today. Just wondering if it's not too much of a bother, would you be able to do this and that's so many words. It takes such a long time.

Charlie:
Yeah, and time is money and the world is getting faster and faster. And so it feels right.

Jordan:
Yeah. Maybe it's the way we're all going. We're all becoming German.

Charlie:
Ooh. So it's time to reflect upon your time in Europe. Have you learned anything about yourself and the world through your travels and living abroad?

Jordan:
It's a long, evolving, gradual process, I think. Yeah. You travel to a new place, you take onboard that culture. You learn about the history and the food, and then it sort of becomes part of you. And I guess it expands your personality. It's a little by little process, I think.

Charlie:
And does it feel like you have this added confidence in not worldly conversations? I mean, yeah, if those conversations come up that talk about those areas that you've lived in, you probably feel very confident in the knowledge that you've got. But I don't know, sometimes Aussies, they look at Europe and think how cultured that place is and how far away we are. Do you do you have like this inner confidence now that you're, you know more about what people around you might not know?

Jordan:
Yeah, I guess so. I think Australia is quite a well travelled country these days.

Charlie:
Um, Australia is a well travelled country. You mean the people in Australia travel quite far and wide?

Jordan:
Yeah I think so.

Charlie:
Yeah they do. Yeah.

Jordan:
There's really high um, passport ownerships, uh, compared to, say, a country like America, there's not people don't not that many people own a passport in America for example. Whereas Australia. Most Australians will have spent a lot of time overseas.

Charlie:
And it's also quite, um, encouraged to go abroad to go to Europe as well, isn't it?

Jordan:
Yeah, I think so. As a young person finishing high school and particularly that, uh, transition from high school into university or university before starting a career, it's almost encouraged to spend some time overseas, living in a different culture. Maybe it's also the tie to the UK, but a lot of Australians do spend 1 or 2 years living in the UK. Uh, it's quite common.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
I think having lived overseas and got to know so many other countries, I'm able to connect, at least on a superficial level, with a lot of other people. You know, I'm, I might meet someone from Slovakia, and I'll have been to their capital city and I can talk about, you know, my favourite features there, or the quirky little supermarkets. And even that it helps you connect to someone you've just met. I think that gives you a level of confidence. But I guess, you know, we were talking about the nudity in Germany. I haven't quite developed that confidence yet.

Charlie:
Yeah. As soon as you see a German, you just get naked.

Jordan:
As soon as I'm in a park.

Charlie:
Does this make you feel at home? No I don't want you arrested. Nice. Okay. And probably end on this one. Uh, do you have any advice for others who are interested in experiencing different cultures?

Jordan:
Well, I guess to really experience it, you need time there. And so however it is that you're able to maximise that time. So, for example, you could sleep on a door, try to save money where possible. That would give you more time to experience that country and that culture. That would be one would be the starting place. But secondly, I think you absolutely you need to meet the locals and be receptive to them and get to know them and be willing to learn from them.

Charlie:
Yeah. Did you do couch surfing?

Jordan:
Only I think twice. Only twice.

Charlie:
Okay. Were they positive experiences?

Jordan:
Actually, you know what, I don't think I have couch surfed. I've hosted couch surfing.

Charlie:
Uh huh.

Jordan:
Um, but I've never done it myself because I'd meet people along the way. So, for example, living in or staying in a hostel in a, in a town, there'd be other travellers from the next city down or another country, and you get to know each other, you swap details and they'd say, ah, if you're passing through such and such town, send me a message. I've got a spare bedroom, I've got a spare couch. And then you take him up on that. So that's probably some. A word of advice is be careful offering your hospitality to an Australian because they'll probably take you up on it.

Charlie:
That's good. Be advised not to invite an Aussie unless you really mean it.

Jordan:
Yeah, exactly.

Charlie:
Yeah. Alright. Well, I think we'll leave it there. Thank you very much for sharing your experience in Europe and Australia. And now we're we're back in Australia. You moved back to Sydney and you're you're now a qualified doctor.

Jordan:
Yeah I am. It's pretty bizarre to think that, you know, going from door sleeping to offering medical advice and treatments. It's it's a bit of a change.

Charlie:
It is. Yeah. But you're enjoying your experience as a doctor?

Jordan:
Yeah. It's it's it's nice I guess I would you know, we're talking about the unsettled travelling life where you're always moving. It's nice to now have some stability and some regular Monday to Friday job that I can rely on.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Jordan:
And a bit of money that helps too.

Charlie:
Yeah, definitely. Well, thank you very much, Jordan.

Jordan:
Welcome! It was a pleasure. Thank you, Charlie.

Charlie:
Well done guys for listening to the end of this episode. We will see you next week on the British English Podcast. Bye bye, Jordan.

Jordan:
Bye, Charlie. Thank you.

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