Tourism Australia’s 2006 campaign was memorable, controversial, and criticised for its clichéd portrayal of Australia and for its cheeky tagline. Despite the attractive prospects of a cold beer, a spot on the beach saved for you by a bikini-clad Lara Bingle, shark-free swimming, kangaroo-free golf courses and Sydney nightlife, the success of the campaign was never quantified. The ad was temporarily banned in the UK for the use of the word ‘bloody’ (wait, what???), edited in Singapore to simply say, “So where are you?” and didn’t go down as well as that cold beer with Japanese, Korean, Thai or German tourists. The campaign cost $180 million and was pulled after 2 years.
So, Australia. Here we are at the end of December, 2018. It is too cold to be on the beach, let alone to save a spot for anyone while wearing a bikini. Your drink of choice may well be warm, mulled wine rather than a cold beer. And the legendary Bondi surfers are taking shelter under their surfboards. Because two days ago, Sydney was subjected to a hailstorm with hailstones THE SIZE OF TENNIS BALLS that pelted the seas, the streets and Instagram. Never before have there been so many Insta-photos of palms. Palms holding “insane” hailstones in various shapes and sizes.
In the days before and after this catastrophe (that sent tourists and locals rushing outdoors to obtain evidence), it rained, and rained and rained.
So the question remains:
Summer, where the bloody hell are you?
©2018 Seetha Nambiar Dodd