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    55 Reasons Why Parliament Is The Greatest Show On Earth

    Canberra is actually REALLY exciting.

    Yesterday I, reporter of crazy animals and batshit insanity, visited Australia’s Parliament House for the first time. Here's what I learned.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    1. First things first. Parliament House is situated in the middle of the world's biggest roundabout.

    Google Maps

    2. It's also got a bloody big flag on top. So it's impossible to miss.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    3. Basically it looks like something out of Game of Thrones.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    4. Anyway, you can actually drive right up to and then UNDERNEATH Australia's Parliament.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    5. You can even park FOR FREE for two hours.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    6. Australia's National Terrorism Public Alert System terror alert is currently at HIGH, yet you can drive a car and park it right underneath Parliament, without passing through any security checks. Just saying.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    7. You walk up some steps (or take a lift) and there you are: standing outside the magnificent Parliament House.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    8. There is A LOT OF MARBLE.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    9. Go through the main doors and you pass through a security checkpoint you are not allowed to photograph (obviously).

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    10. And then you're in an amazing entry hall with floor to ceiling marble columns. And absolutely no one about.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    11. If you're lucky, someone will point out the bit of marble on the floor that looks like a prawn. It really is quite something.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    12. Though actually, the empty marbled hall is pretty damn impressive as is.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    13. Although this building only opened in 1988, there are some wonderful old school touches...

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    14. After a bit of paperwork you're issued with a pass and get to Cross the Rubicon.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    15. Where you'll find a bunch of politicians and fixers doing exactly the same thing everyone else in Australia does first thing in the morning, queuing for coffee.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    Everyone congregates at Aussie's cafe for a caffeine fix: no Starbucks here mate!

    16. Aussie's also sells an abundance of chocs and lollies.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    17. It's basically a 7/11 without the 7 or 11.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    18. Razzamatazz tights are apparently a popular item.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    19. Eventually everyone has had their coffee and work begins.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    20. The nation's crack reporters tweet live updates of a broadcast only available to those with televisions.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    21. But you can watch all that politics stuff at home right? What you can't do is walk Parliament House's hallowed halls. And there are A LOT to walk.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    22. Parliament House is basically a massive maze with 4700 ROOMS and a 21 KILOMETERS of corridors. There's a lot of floor to cover.

    23. While we're on the subject of floors, those in Parliament House are so perfectly polished you have to fight off the temptation to rip off your shoes and slide across them in your socks.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    24. Whoever vanishes this perfect parquet should get a MASSIVE raise.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    25. There must be thousands of kilometers of corridor in Parliament House.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    26. Lots and lots of corridors...

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    27. AND YET...

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    28. There are also lots of empty rooms with sad looking furniture: its like an old folks home without any old people.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    29. Disappointingly, Parliament House toilet seats are plastic, not gold plated or leather cushioned.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    30. However, if you need the toilet roll changed, you contact the Serjeant-at-Arms, which sounds very medieval.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    31. Because it is "The Bush Capital" Parliament House has plenty of green spaces.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    32.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    33. There is an abundance of amazing Australian art.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    34. And contemporary...

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    35. The Parliament House Shop contains arguably the best political bookshop in Australia.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    36. You can also buy a tie if you've been barred from entry somewhere without one (which apparently happens a lot).

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    37. The Shop knows who Australia's most fearsome predator actually is. No glorification of snakes or spiders here.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    38. The walls of Parliament House feature some cracking memorabilia donated by friends and allies.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    39. Like this photograph of Prime Minister Harold Holt bowing to His Majesty Lyndon B. Johnson, 36th President of the United Kingdom of America.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    40. There are some amazing gifts from China.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar
    AAP

    41. In a courtyard a bunch of journalists gather to hear the Prime Minister explain how he has just escaped a political assasination. On the first day of term.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    42. A humbled Mr Abbott is predictably contrite.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    43. Works his way through The Famous Last Words Of The Man In The Last Chance Saloon.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    44. Boasts about his morning catch in Lake Burley Griffin.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    45. This man can REALLY talk with his hands.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    46. The press pack look like they've heard it all before.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    47. Journalists take NOTES! With real notepads and pens.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    48. At one point, the PM seems to be staring into my soul.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    49. Or maybe he is just wondering who hell is talking selfies.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    50. Attention wavers a little...

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    51. Thankfully, it is soon time for the main event, the first Question Time of 2015.

    AAP / Mick Tsikas

    52. There are scores of photographers here and the proceedings are being broadcast LIVE on TV, but you are NOT ALLOWED TO TAKE PHOTOGRAPHS.

    BuzzFeed / Simon Crerar

    53. What do I learn? A) MPs are basically school-kids. B) The ones at the back are the naughtiest. C) The leaders are the clever show-offs.

    AAP / Lukas Coch

    54. Conclusion? Australia's House of Representatives is noisy, aggressive and full of shit.

    Flickr: wwarby / Creative Commons

    55. And The Greatest Show In Town.

    Flickr: nh53 / Creative Commons

    BuzzFeed have removed 16 images from this post at the request of the Parliament of Australia, after being informed that they breached the Rules for Media Related Activity in the Parliament House and its Precincts (the Media Rules).

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