In Pursuit of the Hairy-Nosed Wombat

Every American girl who ever saw Grease wanted to be Sandy Olsson, to look like her and speak in her cool Australian accent. Elementary school had taught us about the nation’s indigenous kangaroos and koala bears, so we knew it must be the coolest place on earth.

When Elle McPherson graced the covers of our magazines and Nicole Kidman our movie screens, we wondered if they only churned out attractive people.  Even our own celebrities were not immune to their charms.  We couldn’t figure out why anyone would ever want to leave happy smiley Dennis Quaid, but Meg Ryan did it for an Aussie.  Then Hugh Jackman and Keith Urban showed up on our radar, and that was all she wrote.  By the time Take  Home Chef debuted on TLC, American women could only respond with, “Yes, please.”  Have you not seen Curtis Stone?

So I did what anyone else would do: I Google Mapped the directions to see how far Sydney was from my home.  Google gave me 187 steps, #81 being “Sail across the Pacific Ocean,” and the last being “Turn right onto George Street.”  It says it would take 503 hours to travel the 15,000 plus miles.  The Proclaimers said they would walk 500 miles, but even THEY would not walk 15,000.  I would do anything for love, but I won’t do that.  So it was decided.  Australia was no longer my destination nation.

That was, until this morning, when Jack Hanna described the tough armored bum of a Tasmanian wombat, and I melted at the sight of its face.   Look at that.

Then I found out wombats viciously maul people, probably because it is in their Australian blood to eliminate humans.  What is up with that?  But then I saw this picture, and I forgave them.  I figured they must have been provoked.  He’s clearly not ripping her face off.

However, I read Bill Bryson’s In A Sunburned Country, so I know Australia is chock-full of the world’s deadliest creatures.  Bryson made it clear that venomous creatures lurk at every corner, waiting to fell you.  No snorkeling at Batt Reef for me.

But then I saw THIS!

I’m so confused.  Should I brave the outback and its lethal creatures or just stay home?

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16 thoughts on “In Pursuit of the Hairy-Nosed Wombat

  1. Australia is full of nature, which, in my experience, just completely wants you dead, all the fucking time. That being said, sloths are adorable, and easily outrun. Go to Costa Rica, support the Sloth sanctuary, and have some chocolate. It’s warm, but closer, and fewer things will plot your death. I feel like that’s a win.

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  2. This had me cracking up! I wasn’t able to resist the charms of the australian male especially not in my weakened state on new years eve at a club called love in manhattan…not kidding, as my very own mick is sitting here next to me I asked him “are wombats vicious?” And he says “come on jen all australian animals are vicious, you know that”…but you should go visit the beer is more dangerous than the wildlife 🙂

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  3. Hi from NZ across the ditch from Aussie. Let me say wild creatures are not at every corner – unless they’re human ones! Oz is a great place, we down unders have to stick together 🙂

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