Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Holiday cheer (and a bit of a grumble)

It's 6:33pm on the 24th of December, and I can say that this year has been an improvement on the last. I spent a lot of it in the company of a new friend, and even though she has moved to Moscow for now, we are still frequently in touch. Other good things happened - Beyonce and Taylor Swift identified as feminists in public, and the struggle for gender equality remained present in the mainstream media.
On a more personal note, I took advantage of having moved house last year to create a more harmonious domestic environment for myself.

One thing I'm struggling with right now is how to perform my identity as Australian. A part of my Bulgarian background is being genteel, sophisticated and refined, and I feel like that's under attack in Sydney. The irreverence of the culture has a coarse, vulgar side. Of course, I wouldn't feel under attack if I didn't surround myself with Sydney against my will. Even a rural town in Taiwan has more elegance in the citizenry than this giant, brash city.

It is practically sacrilege to live in this city and not love it. When the 'Sydney siege' occurred, some official countered that "We are incredibly proud of this city." And so I feel alienated from the rest of the populace - I hesitate to sink my teeth into the patriotism pie. In fact, I will not have it. Whether it's at the national or local level, my sights are always focused on Western Europe, and I don't hide that that is where I'd be if I had the freedom to choose where to abide.

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