Senior Account Executive Stephanie Gale, Curiosity's resident Aussie, weighs in on her travels, her love life, and her feelings about National Hug an Australian Day (April 26).
1) Were you previously aware that there is a National Hug an Australian Day? How do you feel about it?
No! But I fully support it—Aussies are generally pretty huggable people!
2) What do you miss most about Australia?
Living near the ocean and fresh, salty air! Nice weather—not having to wear a zip-up doona (down comforter) for five months of the year! Friends and family, of course, as well our dog, Ruby. That’s not to say I don’t love a lot of things about living in the U.S. The -20°C weather and the Ohio River just aren’t quite at the top!
3) You’ve been in the United States for a year and a half now, and in that time, you’ve seen more of the country than many Americans. Of all the places you’ve visited, which is your favorite, and which is your least favorite?
I really loved Lake Tahoe, California, and Asheville, North Carolina. Least favorite—I have to say I have yet to see anything good come from Indiana (except Maureen Hirt)!
4) How did you meet your husband, James?
In high school! He transferred to our school halfway through the year in year seven, which is the first year of high school for us. I didn’t even know his name for a while, as everyone called him “Egghead” because he came with a really unfortunate haircut. When we got married, my cousin who married us asked, “What were your first impressions of each other?” I said “gangly/awkward,” and he said, “squawky!” We were friends through high school and started dating in uni: I guess I toned my voice down, and he grew out his hair!
5) How did he ask you to marry him?
In 2016, we went on a vacation to California and were in Yosemite National Park. We went on a hike, and the sign said that the hike was going to take 2½ hours, round trip. So we thought, “Oh yeah, we’re pretty fit; it’ll take us less time. They always overexaggerate these things.” Long story short, we realized we were very underprepared when we were about three hours in and weren’t even at the top. And it was just straight up—we still had to come back down! James was vying for a stop, so we stopped by ourselves at a beautiful outlook—very romantic. I said, completely sarcastically, “Is there anything you want to ask me?” And then he was reaching into his bag and said, “Actually, there is,” and pulled out the ring box! So I kind of called it, but I honestly had no idea and was so shocked. It was a happy day!
6) What is your favorite movie genre to see in a theater?
Christmas movies with some rom com thrown in—forever sobbing to Love Actually.
7) If you could live in any city in the world, which would it be? Why?
Florence, Italy. I went on exchange to Italy in high school and think the whole country is so special. I would love to become fluent in Italian and pasta-making, while curating collections at the Museo Gucci.
8) Best concert you’ve ever been to, why? Worst concert, why?
One summer in uni, I took a job working backstage at a number of venues around Sydney, filling artists’ greenrooms with their endless lists of red M&Ms only, long-stemmed roses, freeze-dried berries and particular-colored drapes (but seriously!)—and, in turn, got to see a bunch of great concerts and meet some amazing artists. Elton John was a highlight, as was Radiohead, The Black Keys and Ringo Starr and His All-Starr Band. Worst concert was Nicki Minaj—that was a long night!