Friday, January 12, 2007

in a sunburned country

so today i started reading this book that dad got me for christmakuh called 'in a sunburned country' by bill bryson. it's about traveling through australia. here's what i discovered on page 6:

It is the home of the largest living thing on earth, the Great Barrier Reef, and of the largest monolith, Ayers Rock(or Uluru to use its now-official, more respectful Aboriginal name). It has more things that will kill you than anywhere else. Of the world's ten most poisonous snakes, all are Australian. Five of its creatures- the funnel web spider, box jellyfish, blue-ringed octopus, paralysis tick, and stonefish- are the most lethal of their type in the world. This is a country where even the fluffiest of caterpillars can lay you out with a toxic nip, where seashells will nojust sting you but actually sometimes GO for you. Pick up an innocuous cone shell from a Queensland beach, as innocent tourists are all too wont to do, and you will discover that the little fellow inside is not just astoundingly swift and testy but exceedingly venomous. If you are not stung or pronged to death in some unexpected manner, you may be fatally chomped by sharks or crocodiles, or carried helplessly out to sea by irresistible currents, or left to stagger to an unhappy death in the baking outback. It's a tough place.

no shit.

boy am i excited.



*disclaimer: seriously though, while this sounds scary, i won't actually be encountering these things unless i go to taronga zoo or to queensland or something, and even then, i'll probably a) be with native australians who can recognize such animals/things, or b) remember this passage and be scared as hell to touch anything. so no worries, it's not as dangerous as the book makes it sound. well, it is, but, i won't be in those places.

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