‘Alone Australia’ Winner Gina Chick Recalls Her Orgasmic Post-Show Lasagne


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I’m taking a well-deserved “L” here folks. My speculative ranking of Alone Australia winners ended up being more incorrect than Kendall Jenner’s technique for cutting cucumbers. 

Hat in hand and keen to move swiftly on, I set up a chat with the actual Alone Australia winner Gina Chick who not only survived 67 days in the Tasmanian wilderness, but unequivocally had the most fun. Gina spoke to me about her first meal in civilisation (an orgasmic lasagna), women and representation on Australian TV, and how she managed to catch a freaking wallaby with her bare hands. I also apologised profusely.

Junkee: Congratulations on your massive win! I’d love to know what the first meal you had after coming back from Tasmania was? 

I had these fantasies of eating a toasted crumpet with salted butter. Just one toasted crumpet, perfectly toasted with salted butter. I spent quite a bit of time making a call to Uber Eats to deliver a crumpet via a drone.  I was like “All right, I know it’s $2,000 because you’re coming from Sydney with your drone, but please just take my money!”. Sadly it never arrived. It was like the Hunger Games, where’s my little parachute!

So, the first thing I ate was during the Refeeding program. [The program] is designed to keep me alive, because apparently if you get to a certain point in starvation and then eat sugar too quickly, it can cause a heart attack, which they really didn’t want. It ended up being a lasagna of all things. I turned into a ravaging beast. I went to town on this lasagna TV dinner like that scene from When Harry Met Sally if Sally was raised by wolves. And it is on video somewhere — I still haven’t seen the footage, but I know someone had a camera. So that’ll probably come out to blackmail me at some point.

What has it been like sitting down and watching the show every week? Are you happy with how you were portrayed on Alone Australia?

I feel like the way they told my story is pretty true to how it was for me out there. I had fun. I definitely was a crazy hippie. I was talking to trees and singing to this platypus. There’s a little bit of footage that didn’t make it into the show where I’m licking a tree. I’m fully hugging a tree and licking it. And it’s hilarious … I’d stripped the bark off this tree and seen and it smelt so good. I thought I could eat it! [laughs]

All that crazy stuff was absolutely what I was doing. Dancing on the moss, playing, but also letting whatever emotions were going through me happen and not hiding them. That’s how I am in life, how you see me out there was how I am. I was just a bit muddier and a bit wilder looking. All my friends were watching it going,“Oh my God, it’s just so you”

Late on in Alone Australia, there’s a pretty spooky/magical moment when you catch a wallaby with your bare hands. How on earth did you manage to do that?

I still scratch my head about that. I got to a point where I knew that the fish I was catching didn’t have enough fat to keep me going. So I went down to the lake and I had this chat to nature. I said, “Big Mama Gaia, I know that I’m here to tell a story about nature’s connection to us. But if you want me to tell this story, I’m gonna need some food because otherwise, I’m out of here!”

That night I went out and had a pee and because I was super uncomfortable in my bed, so I sat on this log near the lake. Just basically procrastinating about going back to bed because bed was so uncomfortable. And I don’t even think I saw it. I think I felt it next to me. I felt this presence, and my body launched. My body actually launched, like the animal of my body leapt and landed on it, and I pinned it.

For context, I used to have a dingo and I would go hunting with it. She would corner an animal, and then I’d come through the bush and jump on it

So my body has an understanding of what that movement is. It’s been a while since I’ve jumped on an animal, but my body remembered what to do. And I think because I was 35 days in, rational thought was gone for me by that point. All of a sudden my body went “You’re dinner!” [laughs] 

How have you handled the public attention post-win? Have you thought about what you want your next adventure to be?

I am really blown away by how positively I’ve been received. I was expecting trolls and all sorts of negativity and it hasn’t happened, which has been such a gift. I’ve also really recognised that people seem to resonate with the way that I did my time out there and my ability to work with the landscape and be one with nature. I feel that we all have this resonance inside us, but it’s really hard to aspire to something we haven’t seen. If all we see are survival ninjas, that’s what we think survival is.

I think that there is this beautiful opportunity to continue a conversation where people start to challenge the modern viewpoint of humans’ relationship with nature, which is so important in our relationship with a planet that is buckling under the strain of so many humans consuming resources in such unsustainable ways. 

I really want to be a role model for girls, young girls but also for women. I want to change the narrative about what women in their fifties are and can be, and you know, that there can be like vitality and nourishment and wisdom for a woman in their fifties that isn’t crone. There is something that 50+ postmenopausal women can offer that should be venerated in our society, because there’s a lot of us.

Image credit: Alone Australia, SBS. 

Editor’s Note: this conversation has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.