So, it’s becoming increasingly clear that in spite of my best efforts I’m never going to actually catch up with the last month’s worth of bloggable events. We’ve been back from Australia for over a week now, and, well, I’ve got nowhere, frankly. (er, actually, make that two weeks: see, I even started this entry in the past…)
SO. Perhaps a summary of notable events is in order. I’m clearly quite incapable of yoking together these disparate events into some kind of coherent narrative, so I’ll merely lump them all together here: here are the things I might have blogged, if I’d had the time. Perhaps you’d like to think up appropriate segues for yourself? Ok. Thanks, that’s great…
– Entering a bar in Federation Square near the start of our stay, I was asked for ID. “I’m 28”, I said to the bouncer, a bit taken aback. “You’ve got a very young face”, he said, before asking Sal (Australian driving license in hand) if she’d like to vouch for me.
– A week into our stay in Melbourne, and I suppose feeling a bit homesick, I made the rather unusual decision to get up early in the morning and watch the live Premiership football. After watching a rather dull 1-0 victory for Bolton over Tottenham I was expecting maybe some punditry, perhaps an interview with the managers or a look at the table. But no, apparently. Just straight to adverts and on to the bob sleigh. Clearly a far more important and popular sporting event in the southern hemisphere (at 8 AM on a Tuesday morning).
– Despite having been to Australia three times now, somehow it was still news to me that the standard Australian English word for sheets, towels, linen, and so on, is Manchester. Since when did a town in the north of England become a word for towels? How long has this been going on? Why did no one think to tell me? Can we use the names for other places in the North West to refer to things (Blackpool? Chester? Southport?)
– I’m not sure why, but the question I was most asked during my stay was “is this your first time in Australia?” Without exception, every single new person I was introduced to asked me this question. In some cases there were whole people with whom this was the only conversation I had. By the end of the holiday I was so bored with giving the same answer to the question I was almost at the point of just making stuff up.
– On the plane back I spent much of the second half of the flight exploring the seat-back entertainment system. One of the features this included was a live text news section, which was a bit like a really rubbish version of the Internet crossed with a rubbish version of Ceefax. In amongst the entertainment news I was delighted to read the extremely Onion-esque headline “Incident Blown Out Of All Proportion”.