By Christopher J. Robbins
Greetings from Oz! Maria, John and I are enjoying a warming Spring here in Oz. Spring officially began on September 1st…still adapting to this reversal of seasons. Contrasting to my favorite time of the year back home in the Blue Water Area: Autumn. Something special about those cool, crisp Autumn days in Michigan: fresh cider from the apple orchard, crack of football pads and the emergence of the beautiful colors as the leaves turn. Imagining those beautiful fall color vistas reminds me that God’s paintbrush leaves Van Gogh and the gang in the dust.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge the 17th anniversary of 9/11. An American sacred day of remembrance for all those precious souls lost on that fateful day. May their souls rest in eternal peace. May God protect the surviving families and fill their lives with meaning and gratitude.
Back in Oz: Spring is beautiful too and I feel a deep sense of renewal here in Oz. As the days lengthen our moods are lifted and sustained. We are approaching our 3 year anniversary of living in Oz…and I felt like it was time to reflect on some of the humorous things we have learned about living in Oz. I thought a fun place to start would be with the highly hilarious, quirky Aussie version of the English language.
So let’s Talk unusual Aussie vernacular (for those in Adair Heights, that means everyday words). Starting with some random funny Aussie words and their companion American translation(s). Qualifier: As with most vernacular, the further you get into the country (or bush) the wackier and interesting it gets. Sydneysiders seem to fancy themselves world citizens and claim to speak the Queen’s English and appear somewhat ashamed of everyday ordinary words their fellow Aussies speak. Here’s a short list I’ve compiled that I have either heard in person or listened to on local TV/radio broadcasts or read in local newspapers:
G’day = Hi Carpark=Parking Lot
Oz=Australia Bonnet=Car Hood
Ute=Pick-up Truck Boot=Car Trunk
Bloke = Dude Mate = Friend
Anti-clockwise=Counter Clockwise Mum=Mother
Brekkie = Breakfast Dingo=Dog
Billibong=Pond Dam= Water Reservoir Created by a Dam
Take-Away=Food To-Go Tomato sauce = Ketchup
Prawn = Shrimp Hard Yakka = Hard Work
Streaky Bacon=Bacon Front up = Confront
Backflip=Change your Mind Chinwag = Conversation
Rippa=Awesome Fair Dinkum=True
Punt=Attempt Root=Sexual Intercourse
Football=Soccer Footy=Rugby or Aussie Rules Football
Physio=Physical Therapist Petrol=Gasoline
Gas=Propane Speaking Strayan = Aussie vernacular
Fortnight=2 week period Onyamate=More Power to You
Popular Aussie phrases and their companion American translation(s).
Feeling crook=Feeling Sick
Chuck a sickie = Playing hooky
Spoiled for Choice=Many options
I’ll catch you around = See you later
Doing it tough=Having a rough time
How are you going?=How are you doing?
Mad as a cut snake = Crazy insane person
Decision taken = Decision made.
Bob’s Your Uncle = Tada! Celebration of completing a task well done.
That’s not Cricket = That’s uncool.
She’ll be Apples = Things will turn out terrifically in the end.
Flat Chat = Full throttle.
Flat out like a lizard drinking = Busy to the point of exhaustion.
Take the piss out of someone= Cut them down to size.
Tall Poppy Syndrome = Tendency of Aussies to take shots at high achievers or powerful persons.
Fair-go= Give everyone an even chance to succeed.
A Balmain Fair-Go = Rumble or Brawl
Drop Bear = Fictional animal known to attack gullible tourists from the trees.
Aussies tend to shorten everyone’s name or add “y” or “o” at the end. See the following examples:
Scott Morrison (New Prime Minister) =>ScoMo
Steve Price(Popular Cranky Radio Host) => Pricey
Have fun putting these funny words and phrases together….I know I do. Everyday in Oz is a new adventure. Word of warning….when you visit Oz keep your eye out for the Drop Bears!
That’s all for now — catch you around in a fort-night.
Useful Travel to Oz Financial factoids:
Currency Exchange Rate: $1 USD = $1.40 AUD. Source: Bloomberg
Roundtrip Airfare Det-Syd: $1594 USD, Source: Expedia; Delta, 1 Stop in LA