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Patchwork #31

One-Liner Wednesday – The Right Word

The threads of this patchwork include green icing, contrasts of culture, and the meaning of love.

My son had his 29th birthday earlier this month. We are super proud of him and his achievements. We went out for a lovely family dinner at our favourite Chinese restaurant. His cake icing was a bold green, the same shade as Shrek, and beneath it was a deliciously light carrot cake. It was totally yummy!  

I had a pink cake for my birthday, and our cake-maker supreme, Miss K, is thinking she’ll go purple for hers. Today is Australia day.  I’m not Australian, although my genealogy states some Aussie ancestors…hopefully not convicts lol…

Australia Day

I am still a newbie and eons away from being a local here, but I will enjoy the public holiday and count my blessings about living in this great southern land.

There are huge contrasts, yet so many similarities between life in Aussie and NZ.  After 7 and a half years of living on this side of the Tasman, it’s clear the rivalry/jip/stirring between them and us is still a thing.

I am gradually getting used to the differences.  One of them I won’t though; I don’t like the storms at all.  They are loud and intimidating as the sky darkens, and the clouds grow and rumble, contorting, and menacing. Lightning flashes, followed by a thunderclap that sounds like the earth is cracking open.

 Any minute now…I think to myself.  The worst thing, I think, is driving in a storm.  The rain lashes down so heavily, visibility is limited, if not impossible.  And yet, people go out and walk in them, and drive without a care.  That’s the difference between me and the Aussies.  I just don’t do it if I can help it.

There are so many other differences, but one that I come up against every day is the confusion over our accents. 

get told, “Oh you’re a bloody kiwi!”  LOL  Sure am, mate.  100%.  Our countries are cousins, we have a special pact, a bond.  We did WW1 together at Gallipoli, (ANZAC Day) we had each other backs. 

I think there will always be the jip.  Especially over our accents!  “Say fush and Chups!”  They still say that!!  I think I’m saying the right word. The Kiwi vowels are completely flipside to the Aussie ones.  I’d finish a sentence to find the person would smile and nod…that is a universal language for  “what?”  or “Que?” as Manuel said in Fawlty Towers.  The locals here had no clue what I just said. Check out the link to the video for a giggle…

There are obvious vowels like…Sckewl (school) and Pewl (pool) but there are quite a few others I learned not to say within a short time of living here.  In NZ we have decks, pergolas, and patios.  It’s not common to say, Veranda. You might know where I’m going with this…

But after a woman nearly choking on their tea and a guy raising his eyebrows almost off his forehead when I said I liked his deck…(it was brand new, and had only been finished the week before)  well, I trained myself to say veranda.

There are expressions too.  Like ‘Port’.  So a port is either something you drink, somewhere you dock a boat, or where you plug in a USB.  Right?

Wrong.  It’s also a suitcase.  I found this out when I was to move a woman’s port, and put it on top of her wardrobe.  It will be empty, I was told.  She was just out of the hospital.  So my head is going, okay so patients take alcohol in with them?  Are they allowed a tipple?  How weird?!  I needed more clarity, so I asked what they meant by port.

There were raised eyebrows, but it was explained that it was a suitcase. 

 Ohhhhh!  Okay!  That makes so much more sense!  I’d never heard that expression before.  Ever.

I think I’ll write a short book about the Kiwi girl who made the hop across the ditch (Tasman Sea), and the contrasting land and culture she found when she got there.  I’m one of the many thousands of Kiwis living here in Aussie, and they will all have their own story to tell, but mine will be by me.  Maybe that will be a project for this year…

On that note, to every Australian, I wish you all a Happy Australia Day.  I’m enjoying a cup of Daintree Tea from Northern Qld, so whatever you have in the glass or cup that you raise up in a toast to being Australian, enjoy your day.

Dad Joke Alert…

How remiss of me…I haven’t done a da joke yet!  And I’ve got some doozies for you this year…

So with the Australian Open being topical…my all-time favourites are Roger Federer and Ash Barty. So let’s have a tennis-flavoured DJ this time.

‘My friend fell in love with a tennis player, but found that love meant nothing to him…’

Thanks for reading


6 thoughts on “Patchwork #31

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