As Matt pointed out to me when he got home from work this afternoon, I didn’t go into any explanation of the title of my last blog entry. Well, as well all know, Aussies speak quite differently to us Americans, and while I’ve picked up on some phrases, others remain beyond my grasp. (Just as a super brief example, “afternoon” above would be “arvo” in Aussie speak, and “while” would be “whilst”.)
I cannot master “g’day”. Matt says I put too much emphasis on the “g” and throw the whole word off balance. I’ve tried imitating and can’t seem to do it properly. Maybe once or twice I’ve gotten lucky, but you certainly wouldn’t be fooled that I’m not from around here. In general, I haven’t picked up the accent, though certain words have proven quite fun to mimic (and I sound quite chahming when I do, right Bubs??) and always make me giggle.
Foods have been the main source of discord, from punnets, kumara and sultanas to shallots, herbs and basil, Matt and I always get a laugh when heading to the store. But of course, here it isn’t a store but the more formal “supermarket”. The parking garages are car parks, the sidewalk is the pavement, and don’t forget the trollies and lifts. Basketball boots are what we know as hi-tops, and I still can’t get over biscuits referring to something sweet. And as for mate… well, I can’t quite master that, either.
Some words I have almost caught myself saying, but I’m afraid that if they slip off my tongue people will think I’m one of those annoying people that fake accents and force themselves to pick up on words that they really would never say, making them sound extremely unnatural and snobby. “Reckon”, “keen”, “heaps” (a seriously useful word – sounds much better than lots or tons or a grip), “nappy” and “bin” are just a few examples, and I really do enjoy “arvo” because it rolls off the tongue so much easier than “afternoon”. Yet I bite my tongue. “Reckon” will fight its way into a sentence when I am teasing Matt so I can cover up the fact that I would actually like to use it. It’s a handy word!
I reckon I’ve left a few examples out, but I’m sure Matt’ll be keen to point them out to me. So see yous later, mates; I’ll catch up with you in the arvo!
Much love and many hugs,