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November 2, 2006

Aussie 101

The last college semester I took happened to be while I was studying abroad in Australia. The semester was four months long, I went by myself, ended up rooming with 2 guys and a girl (TOTALLY not allowed at my house) and really discovered some things about myself. I learned that it's never a good idea to follow directions given by a drunk counselor, I learned that America, as crude and sexually driven as it is, is nowhere NEAR that of other countries. I learned that I really love Nutella, and really hate Vegemite. I discovered that going to an Australian grocery store could keep me occupied for hours. I learned that America has much more influence on other countries than I ever thought. Among all these things, I also learned a few choice Australian slang terms and lingo, and I thought I'd share. Here are just a few phrases or words I heard every day:

*sultanas = raisins. They actually have Sultana Bran. Prawns=shrimp. Big ones. Big black ones. Big black sea spiders.....ugh.... Rice Krispies are "Rice Bubbles", cause they kinda look like bubbles, don't they? Now that we're on it, what the heck is a krispie anyway?

*My first time grocery shopping I was asked if I wanted white or *brown* bread, and then if I wanted Tasty or White Cheese. "Tasty" is their form of cheddar, though it has a slightly different taste.

*Aussies like to shorten every word possible. Breakfast becomes "Brekkie", shorts become "shorties", sunglasses are "sunnies" Aussie Rules Football or Rugby is "footie". They don't ask you if you're going to college, but university, and it guessed it... "uni".

*One phrase they use alot that has somehow eeked it's way into my vocab is "No worries", meaning no problem, no big deal. No worries mate!

*Aussies don't use the word vacation, but *holiday*. As in, "Oh, you're going to Cannes on holiday are you?" It made for an interesting conversation when I was trying to book my hotel room for their Spring Break. "You want to do what? Vacation....OH! You mean holiday!"

*A few years ago I decided that I didn't need to drink as much pop as I was, so I stopped. In Australia I was eating lunch with a friend one day, and ordered a lemonade. One swig and I nearly coughed up a lung. I was NOT expecting the bubbles! Apparently "lemon squash" is what we call lemonade, and lemonade "Squirt" here.

*Do NOT make the mistake of asking a waitress for a napkin in Australia. That's a diaper sweetie. You don't want that.

*One phrase my grandma still uses is "Good Onya!" for good job.

*One of my favorites was their word for cotton candy - fairy floss. No explanation needed.

Alright, I've got to stop. I pulled out the binders my mom made of all the emails I sent home, and if I don't stop I won't get this posted until after midnight and hello! Would totally have already screwed up this whole thing on the second day.

So..... G'day mate!

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