So, four Russian warships are heading in our direction, and pronto. At first that may seem bad news of the “potential invasion by former superpower that’s held onto most of its weapons” variety.
But relax! There are plenty of potential reasons why the Russian Navy vessels might wants to head to Australia for a bit. I’m sure it’s one of the reasons below. Maybe several, who knows?
They did a muffin run. Russia has a bit of a PR problem at the moment, and nothing says “sorry, we goofed” like a basket of delicious muffins. They could deliver them to the G20 leaders, saying – “hey international community, we’re sorry about all the shenanigans in Ukraine – here, have a freshly-baked blueberry muffin!”
They’re just plain lost. After all, in recent years Russia has lost the Cold War, most of its former regional possessions, the respect of the international community and countless Eurovision Song Contests. Maybe this is just more of the same?
They’re huge Jessica Watson fans, and while they know it’s a while since her legendary circumnavigation, they’re hoping against the odds for a glimpse of Ella’s Pink Lady. Maybe she’ll even sign their Kremlin orders?
They’re delivering a Russian Warshipogram. Nothing says ‘happy birthday’ like a surprise visit from four Russian warships. After you’ve been on the receiving end of one, you’ll never settle for a boring old Gorillagram again!
They heard Australia has the best gelato in the world. And who knows, maybe Cow and Moon is putting on a special borscht flavour for them?
They want to go on a Sydney harbour cruise. They’ve probably heard enticing tales of decadent all-you-can-drink packages and dancefloors where it’s still 1983 (or 2013 in Russian fashion terms). Or perhaps they’ve read glossy marketing brochures that somehow neglect to mention the main activity conducted on harbour cruises: projectile vomiting off the side of the boat.
They want to get within TV reception range to catch Family Feud. Grant Denyer is regrettably geoblocked in the Russian Federation, and they probably can’t wait to find out to know what a random survey of terrible people think is a good job for a woman.
They’re rushing to check out the Great Barrier Reef while they still can. What with the damage caused by pollution, rising sea levels, the crown of thorns starfish, and tinnies thrown overboard by aquatic bogans, it’s a race against time.
They want to try Harry’s Café De Wheels when they berth at Garden Island. You can’t get a proper Tiger in Moscow – they serve them with mushy cabbage instead of mushy peas. In fact, in Russia they serve every meal with mushy cabbage.
They’re going to help Vladimir Putin make a dramatic exit from the the G20. The former KGB Agent and current supervillain plans to run into the ocean at Surfers’ Paradise, wearing a suit all the while. He’ll use an improvised windsurfer made from discarded Paddle Pop sticks to head offshore, where a miniature submarine will meet him and convey him back to the nearby Russian flotilla.
They want to help Sea Shepherd protect whales in the Southern Ocean. About as likely as Japan conceding that its scientific whaling programme is only researching how delicious whale sashimi tastes, again and again, but it’s a possibility.
Their rudders are broken, and they know that the Australian Navy offers a free service that turns boats around. The ships were originally in Indonesia for an exhibition, and our navy is no longer entering those waters uninvited, so they’ll just have to keep heading south before we can set them on their way north and home.
Russia is bloody cold this time of year. In fact, the more I think about it, the more likely it seems that this is the actual reason. Somebody’s probably doing these sailors a favour by letting them pissfart around in the Southern Hemisphere during the coldest month before they head back to their bleak home base in the windswept port of Freezingrad.