Obviously one of the most important reasons you get married is to get a bunch of presents from extended family members. I mean, you can’t buy yourself a $250 waffle maker and sleep at night, right? But if Aunt Leslie sends it to you, then those waffles come guilt free. Sadly, when I married Paul in 2012, I wasn’t able to register.
1. I could not for the life of me figure out how to register for gifts on ANY Australian website. People had to actually shop in-store and seeing as ¾ of our guests list lived in the US, this wouldn’t work.
2. I really just wanted to register at Bloomingdales or Target in the US, BUT they didn’t ship to Australia. Plus, the idea of trying to check a wine decanter that we probably wouldn’t use correctly after three months of travelling, getting married in Park City and drinking fermented beverages with our loved ones sounded unfathomable.
Anyway when people asked where we were registered, Paul and I said that their presence was a present! Which was true. BUT I’m bummed that I don’t have a glass electric kettle to impress my friends with. On the bright side, over the past five years – I’ve learned that I don’t need a collection of serving platters or champagne flutes to make my marriage work. (Just therapy and Mudgee wine.)
In reality, if I could have registered, I would have asked for the following items:
- A clue about how to drive on the left side of the road. (And some sort of reminder to help me remember that the driver’s seat is on the right side of the car.) Long story short, my first year was embarrassing and slightly dangerous. I’d also like to be able to detect kangaroos and wombats around dawn and dusk when I’m driving. Is there an app for that?
- Instructions on how to make proper Mexican food with no authentic supplies. (Or maybe just a meeting with immigration so we could discuss how to get more Mexicans to migrate to Australia.)
- A translator for when I’m shopping for “ice” or trying to order a “Sprite” from the McDonald’s drive-thru (Apparently, after six years here, I still can’t say, ‘oice’ or ‘lemonade.’
- A teleportation machine. (Getting from Australia to Gainesville, Florida takes roughly 34 hours. That is enough time for all of my armpit hair to grow back in and that’s not okay. My loved ones back home don’t need to see me like that.)
- Unlimited access to HULU and HBO GO so I could keep up with all the trendy scientology docos. Damn you country blocks! (But thank goodness for Netflix.)
- A fund that pays for my ridiculous phone bill. Yes, Skype and FaceTime are great, but I don’t always have WIFI when I need to call my mom, Donna, because I’ve just experience some sort of public humiliation.
- Wet wipes for the above scenario I purposefully didn’t describe in detail like I usually do. (You’re welcome.)
- Someone to tell me that a “fancy dress” party means costume party. (I went full on black tie formal to a “fancy dress” party and it was a little uncomfortable when a hippie and shirtless fireman answered the door.) I would have also appreciated someone telling me that a swim costume is just a swim suit. That was also confusing during the early years.
- Plane tickets and paid time off for my friends to come visit me from the US. OR a matchmaking services that helped them all find Aussie lovers so they’d move to Mudgee and we could all live together happily ever after.
- Hair Extensions. No matter how hard I try, I can’t grow my bleach-damaged hair past my shoulders, which is truly tragic because my annual resolution is to learn how to surf and look attractive while I do it.
This is an edited excerpt from Summer’s new book, Summer in OZ. (Release date TBC.)
Get Summer Land’s hilarious memoir, Summerlandish: Do As I Say, Not As I Did, here or at The Shop by Botobolar at 28 Church Street.
Follow Summer on Instagram HERE
Like Summer on Facebook HERE