Tuesday, March 27, 2007

At least the frogs are clean!

I found fog footprints in my soap this morning. Most Likely put there by Pluggy, the Foot Prince:

Almost every morning, this guy is sitting on the other side of the ‘bars’ of the plughole, looking up at me. I bid him good morning and inform him I’m going to have a shower. He has a little shower of about ten seconds before he decides to go further down the drain and wait till I’ve finished. Almost every evening I find him in the bath, or somewhere in the bathroom, having climbed up through the bars. He’s such a little fatty; definitely one of my favourites.

This is Bowler, so called, not for his taste in headwear, but rather for his insufferable ability to prevent me from going to the loo in the middle of the night (when it’s pouring with rain outside!) by virtue of the fact that he is staring up at me from the bottom of the bowl.

But enough of my froggy distractions for now; what have I been up to this week?

Well, I’ve definitely been busy:

Friday was Harmony Day at the local high school. This was the first thing that I have had to organise in my role as Town Linguist. The day would have gone considerably better had we not been locked out of the library (where all our activities were based) for 30mins. However, we did get some kids in playing on our language computer games (Bilinarra, Dalabon, Kriol, Ngarinyman, Jaminjung and Ngaliwurru), and Colleen and I played a homemade game of Kriol ‘Twistim’ (‘pudim yu rait hen la bluwan’, ‘pudim yu lef fut la redwan’ [prizes to the first of you to translate that into English in the comments! – this is part one of Kriol distance ed. 101]).

On Saturday afternoon, I went to my first Auction and bought a box of books for $5 – Bargain! Another box I was looking at started to sky rocket beyond $25 dollars, so I let it go. That night saw me at the local high school again, this time for a fundraising trivial night for a heart monitor for Katherine District Hostpital. Apparently a heart monitor is around $5k, and we raised $15k. Huzzah!

Sunday, I planned to sit around, write up my post, and do other fairly non-eventful shenanigans such as dish washing and sweeping the floor (no vacuum – concrete slab). But instead, I was whisked away to Edith Falls with Salome and her housemate, Denis, where we snuck a swim in a secret spot. That night was roaming meditation (as I have taken to calling it). It had roamed to my house, where I served Tofu Stir-fry Thingy (official culinary title), followed by Chai and icecream with blue berries. We then lay on the floor and practised Yoga Nidra for 30mins, guided by one of the other roaming meditator’s tapes. It was a great night.

Monday, I was up earlier than normal (6:30am, instead of 7:15), and off to my 4WD training course at Charles Darwin University. It was heaps of fun, and I got to see a (insert appropriate collective noun here) of cycads and go down into some limestone caves. I failed to cover the vehicle in mud (a jocularly threatened ‘fail’ from my instructor), but did manage to avoid nearly getting bogged. Later, when we were trying to get bogged, we all failed. We had to park in the middle of a pond and winch ourselves. After returning the work car, I stopped by the local Civic Video and hired ‘Erik the Viking’ ($1 weeklies on a Monday – bargain!) for a spontaneous video night with Salome and Queenie (one of our Kriol interpreters).

So that leads me to today. This afternoon I was given a skin name. Now that I have an adopted skin, I can fit into the Aboriginal kinship system. It’s so cool – I have heaps of uncles, aunties, brothers, sisters and even potential husbands! My skin is Nangala, this is a Warlpiri skin. Sometimes it’s difficult to align different skin names from different language groups, so I’m not sure if Nangala means I’m Burlanjan or Gotjan (Burlanjan’s daughter) – these are from the East-side skin system more commonly used at work.

In other news:
- Today was Imo’s first day at her new Melbourne Path job. Go you good thing Imo. Go you big red fire engine!
- There’s an interpreting services conference coming up in Sydney that I may just get in on. Excitement. Will let you know more when I do.
- That’s all I can think of at the moment.

Dee, sorry I haven’t got round to photos of the house yet – I have not forgotten, I promise to put some in the next post.

Silent readers: Please comment, I love to hear what’s going on in Melbourne (or wherever you are *cough*Rob!*cough*).

Love you all. Catchya later. x


Dee said...

'Put your right hand on blue one',
'Put your left foot on red one'?

I love it.. both your post, all the fun your having and my new found appriciation for Kriol.

love me x

nanik said...

halooo hooch, apa kabar? senang sekali membaca ceritamu :P

so, u become a linguist now, cool!

Adam said...

Hey! Pluggy is very cute, I'm jealous of your bathroom amphibians… not in the sense that I want to hang about in toilets mind, more that I want to see little green frogs of a morning.

Hooch said...

Nanik!! Hebat sekali bahwa kamu mencari dan membaca blogku. Aku baik, tetap Bahasa Indonesiaku sedikit buruk karena aku tidak bisa mempraktekkan. Apa kabar Nanik?

Glad to see you guys are all keenly commenting. please keep them flowing, don't let this comment stop you.

Daniel said...

Tell us more about both 'Kriol' (a phonetic spelling of 'Creole'?) and your Skin Name (what it is and how you got it). Very cute frogs but the bog frog may be a bit disconcerting.

Anonymous said...

Checking this works before writing heaps like twice before.


Anonymous said...

Yes...great ok...now I have that figured out!

How nice to share your space with the green ones! Great you've given them names.

Great to talk to you the other night - was just a pity I couldn't talk that well...I was listening though!

Luke's Espie gig we spoke about was fantastic! Best I've seen so far! Mates from overseas and others we've met since came along which was great. The band even had 2 x 50 year old groupies down the front who were dancing away - great stuff.

Tomorrow night we are off to an engagement party - David Ford - remember him? Should be fun, have only met his girl once before though which will be a little strange.

Anyway...keep getting distracted by the swiming.

Great blog (as usual)....glad I can now write back!


pa said...

Dear Hooch
Great to read your blog. Can you shed your skin name if you don't like it. I have texted you my user name and password but find texting very laboriuos and frustrating. I get so far and then press the wrong key and either send the incomplete message or put it in draft where I don't seem to be able to edit it. I am unaware of the blogging problem you are referring to, but await your further advice. Nana is well and with me send our love


Adam said...

Just had a horrid afterthought, you don't have hot showers do you?

Hooch said...

actually adam, as it happens, while I was house sitting, the pilot light of the gas hot water went out, and I was subjected to cold showers for the rest of the month (as I didn't know how to reignite it). However, Pluggy has emerged from the plug hole only once to have a shower with me, and that was when I was using warm water.