If you're not a fan of Christmas music, you'd best avoid shopping centres during December. Photo Renee Albrecht/Gympie Times
If you're not a fan of Christmas music, you'd best avoid shopping centres during December. Photo Renee Albrecht/Gympie Times Renee Albrecht

5 reasons why December 1 is an important day

DECEMBER 1 is a day of change - a number of modifications to life as we know it are being introduced today.

Here are some:

Summer

Today marks the official beginning of the summer season - and it's coming in with a bang, aka a heatwave.

It's officially the season to hang out in shorts, singlets and thongs, while relaxing at the beach (just don't forget the sunscreen and wide-brimmed hat).

With this summer set to be an extreme one, we wish you the best of luck in keeping cold without breaking the bank on electricity bills.

P-Plate laws

From today P2 licence holders (Green P-Platers) in NSW will no longer be able to use a mobile phone while driving or riding.

P2 licence holders will now have the same restrictions as learner or P1 licence holders.

This new restriction means P2 licence holders cannot use any function of a mobile phone, which includes the hands-free mode, loudspeaker operation or text message service while driving, riding or when stationary.

P2 licence holders found to be using a mobile phone while driving or riding will be fined $325 and be penalised four demerit points. Double demerit points are applicable.

Telstra 2G Network

The Telstra 2G network, which launched in April 1993, will close today in a move two years in the making.

2G customers will no longer be able to access the mobile network from December 1, meaning they won't be able to make calls or send messages, including emergency calls to 000.

Some customers may still be able to make emergency calls within the network coverage area of another carrier with a 2G network.

World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day is held on December 1 each year.

It raises awareness across the world and in the community about the issues surrounding HIV and AIDS, and is a day for people to show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died.

HIV still exists in Australia - In 2014 there were 1,081 new HIV diagnoses in Australia.

HIV can affect anyone.

There is no vaccine or cure for HIV, however there is highly effective treatment.

People living with HIV take medications on a daily basis to maintain their HIV at an undetectable level and to keep themselves healthy.

Today, HIV is considered a chronic but manageable condition, and people living with HIV can lead long and healthy lives, with a similar life expectancy to a person who does not have HIV.

Visit ACON's website for more information.

Christmas season

You didn't think we were going to forget this one now, did you?

While some have already assembled their Christmas trees and some shops have already got their Christmas displays front and centre, December 1 is when the Christmas season officially starts - so expect to see a whole lot more decorations around.

From Christmas light-decorated houses, to festive events, Christmas parties and themed food and drinks (pass the eggnog), you're about to get soaked in Christmas cheer this December.

For all those Grinches out there, don't forget to pack your headphones with you the whole month in order to avoid the Christmas music playing absolutely everywhere.

I, however, will be singing along with a spring in my step.



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