In the US, if you walk into your LBS/running shop/surf shop for the first time, you get a cold shoulder and are shunned until you can prove that you belong. It's the same when you're new to a trail, surf spot, gym, pool... It's a different vibe down under. Joining an alternative sport is celebrated. Most Aussies don't just do one sport, they can do most of them and they just pick what suits them best. Here, in the US, a kid can do one sport and that's it. A surfer's a surfer and can't do anything else, or his surfer friends will call you a poser. That mentality doesn't go away. Look at the ST endurance vs. CF wars.
Just keep swimming...
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