Saturday, July 11, 2009

Moving to and Living in Australia Bada Beans and Hee-yah

A Beautiful Day in Sydney by you.

I often find myself nodding and agreeing,
though I haven't a clue what they are saying.

Bada beans (butter beans) and hee-yah (here).

Gah-leek is garlic and haych is how they pronounce h, as in the name of the letter.

Dinna is dinner and doona is either a bed comforter or the duvet, I'm still confused on that one; I'll just nod and idiotically agree some more.

When you eat something delicious in Australia, a standard commentary is, "That's beautiful.", at least that's what everyone on Masterchef Australia says.

Fillet (as in a cut of meat) rhymes with skillet in Australia, and it doesn't rhyme with ballet.

Ta means thanks, it took me almost two years to find this out.

If you call in sick to work you're chuckin' a sickie... this is actually one of my favorite (favourite) Australia-isms.

At preschool last year the kids made dam-pah. I felt like such a jackass when I asked the teacher to spell it because I just could not figure out what the hell she was talkin' about. Of course she spelled it and I still was baffled. When I arrived at pick up time and saw them eating bread rolls, which are called damper bread, it didn't make me feel any bettah.

Recently my friend said they were going to Barrel for school break. I search it on the internet-- nothing. Next time I saw her I pressed her on it-- apparently you pronounce Bowral like barrel, who would have thunk?

Through Kindergarten drama, I found out that a dobber is a tattletail. And if you're an Aussie, and I'm not spelling this correctly, please feel free to let me know. It could just as well be dobba, but who knows?

If your house or cah (car) is nice, they'll call it flash. If you're getting a kiss, Aussies say pash.

When we meet at the bike park My Favorite Australian says we're going bike-all-ling.
I haven't even a clue how you'd spell that.

Did I mention that they swear on the radio hee-yah? I really like that.

Some other things I like hee-yah: (taken last week on the ferry)

DSC_0525 by you.
People climbing the Sydney Harbour bridge day and night.

DSC_0528 by you.
The city as you pull into Circular Quay on the ferry.

DSC_0516 by you.
Sydney Opera House and the city.



Natalie said...

'Hee yah' = here, not to be confused with 'hereya' which means: here you are.
Dobber is the correct spelling, we say Dobber Dog too.
Never heard of 'bike- a- ling', though I have heard plenty of swearing on the radio. :D
While we're addit, don't fahget that 'tomahtoes go rooly well with ya fillet'.
Hooroo! means see ya, goodbye.
Smoooch is a kiss, pash is tongue kissing, or open mouthed kissing.
Hope this helps a bit.xx♥

JD at I Do Things said...

Beautiful photos!

I love "chuckin' a sickie" and plan to use it whenever I can. My husband and I visted New Zealand years ago and kept track of all the different expressions (my favorite was "judder bars" for bumps in the road). We made up our own, which we still say: "Mind yer bickie." I don't know what it's s'posed to mean, but it cracks us up.

ChiTown Girl said...

This was quite amusing and entertaining, not to mention educational! ;-) Thanks for sharing.

Teresi Family Oz Blog said...

I think feral is my favorite. It seems to be reserved for the worst of the worst.

rinniez said...

haha i love this.
i didnt realise how different our aussie slang is until this year as we had a couple of American exchange students who couldnt understand a word we said.
very funny post!

ian said...

I struggle with place names - I am still being mocked at work for calling Rozelle....Ros(as in Frasier)elle as opposed to Row..zelle

This is a land where nothing is pronounced how it looks - it's designed to expose the non-Aussies......and provides plenty of laughs for my work colleagues

Juli Ryan said...

I love this post! When I first arrived in NZ, I couldn't understand the anchors on the news, much less my husbands' mates. Lots of nodding and pretending to understand and asking people to spell things out. LOL.

SuperMindy said...

a comforter is a quilt and a doona is the duvet

Captain Dumbass said...

I like chuckin a sickie.

Anonymous said...

what about from your pictures how they pronnounce QUAY like KEY!! That's not how I would say it in my part of the states!

Jenny said...

Love the photos! "Ta" is annoying- what is so hard about saying "Thanks"? And I'm never sure how to react when someone uses the term "flash"- is it a compliment, or a bit of a backhanded compliment (as in flashy/show-offish)?
Some Aussie expressions are quite catchy- I've noticed my kids using them back here in the US.

People in the Sun said...

Hey, speaking Baltimorean isn't easy. The letter O is three syllables long.

There's an Australian guy on CNN, Michael Ware, who was in Baghdad when the war was at its peak, and now, of course, he's in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. And he's idealistic and brave and smart, but when he speaks I can't help yelling, "Come on! You and your fancy down-under accent!"

I don't miss any opportunity to yell at my TV. We have a love-hate relationship.

Lindsay McHugh said...

I absolutely loved this post. Hilarious because it's true.

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Natalie- That's what hooroo means? Who knew?

JD- I am totally using "mind your bickie"-- totally.

Chitown- Thanks.

Teresi Mama- Yes, ferel I hear a lot!

Rinniez- Yeah, it's hard for us foreigners, it's like we're in a whole other country :).

Ian- There's a lot of places I don't even want to attempt pronouncing the names. Btw, had an absolutely wonderful time today with you and Gus. I am hoping you guys will join our the expat posse.

JuliRyan- Yeah, it's all about pretending you understand.

Supermindy- Thanks for clearing that up. See you Friday girlfriend.

Capt. Dumbass- Like who doesn't.

Anonymous- Yes key or quay, tomahto tomato.

Jenny- Yes, I think flash is like a backhanded compliment... Hope you're having a great time at home.

PITS- I had no idea Baltimorean was so tricky.

Lindsay- Yeah, I could do a post about this kind of stuff like once a month.

Danielle said...

Great post! It is funny that even after living here for 2years, you still find strange words :)
Someone told me about Mt Bulla (Buller) and I said "oh, like Bulla brand sour cream?" and they said - No, Bulla. I had to ask them to spell it so I could look it up.
I also think "fairy floss" is funny (cotton candy)

LesbianBride said...

Cool post!

Damper isn't a normal breadroll though - it's some kind of special bread that they made in the old days. It's a special recipe.

Flash isn't always a backhanded compliment. "That's flash" could be a compliment if said with enthusiasm. If said with a groan, then it's probably not a compliment.

I hate the word pash and prefer the more British "snog". Pash is something people my parents' age (late 50s) use to try to be hip, but people who grew up when I did (90s) were not saying pash.

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Danielle- Yeah, I love the term "fairy floss", though I often want it to actually be floss I can offer to the many gay men in my life, but whatever. And speaking of fairies, I love fairy bread.

Lesbianbride- Oh no, I didn't realize damper bread was a special recipe.. looks like regular bread rolls to me-- what's the unique part to it?? And glad to hear "flash" isn't kind of bling but in a rude way. Cheers.

Angel said...

Excellent class on the verbal culture. I loved it! I don't know how you survive over there. An Aussie accent has always been my favorite. I'd be hopelessly in lust with every man that walked by me smelling good and talking.

Mama Bird said...

Hilarious post. Lots of memories of my learning the "language". :) I still remember when my MIL asked me if I wanted a serviette, I simply said, "sure, thanks" trying to be polite and was pleasantly surprised when I was handed a napkin. LOL. I had no clue what I was saying yes too.

Speaking of pash, there is also "pash and dash" and "pash rash", which I always thought were funny.

"Flat out" is a big one (as in "super busy") that we still use.

We call our bathing suits, "togs".

And we still jokingly refer to Mooloolaba (on the Sunshine Coast) as "Moolooloolambah" as one of my friends kept calling it when she came to visit. Too funny.

I love the Aussie slang. I always think it's one of the many things that make that country so fun to be in. You learn something new all the time! My husband will still come out with slang every now and then that I have no clue what he's saying.

Marvin the Martian said...

How do you say "bollocks" in Aussie?

Brutalism said...

I love reading about Australia, though it does make me a little jealous that you get to live there. What an experience!

Blues said...

You made me really miss my Aussie friend who just moved back down under from Spain.

I picked up on a lot these little bits from her, oh and because for awhile I was completely obsessed with Love My Way.

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Angel- You should see the police force here- they are even hotter than the normal males... and I'm not one to usually be all into men in uniform.

Mama Bird- Yeah, I still never say serviette, and my husband says "flat out" all the time, I think he's uses a lot more of the lingo because he's in an office with Aussies all day.

Marvin- I think it's "bullocks"??

Brutalism- Aww, thanks. I know it's a great experience, but that is hard to remember some days.

Blues- I've heard of Love My Way but never seen it-- is it an Aussie soap opera?

Anonymous said...

Try the Middle East - I walked into the office today and the receptionist was reading the Arabic news. It had a huge picture of a guy with some bold writing alongside. i asked her what is said and she said he has been ''shitting'', what?? ''Yes, he has been shitting'' ... I looked at her blankly and it took me a few seconds to realise she had meant 'cheating'!

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Eternally Distracted- That's harsh, and I think I've got challenges here, haha.

Dina said...

I end up pronouncing pretty much every Australian place name wrong. I say it in my head one way. Then I talk to an Australian and I end up being totally surprised about the way the pronounce it.

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Dina- It's almost like they purposely pronounce it all Australian-ish to confuse us.

rinniez said...

I cant remember the exact difference between damper and bread rolls but it is definately different! and its meant to be cooked in the ground... not in an oven. i personally dont think it is damper if u cook it in an oven.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

Hehe yes we definitely pronounce things different hee-yah. I really notice the difference in pronunciation of words like caramel (carmel in US) and Craig (Creg) :)

Anonymous said...

Oh fairy bread to go with your fairy floss. I think it's the greatest thing! Aussies have fooled their kids into thinking a piece of bread with butter and sprinkles (hundreds and thousands) is a treat equal to any other party food!! How good are they!!! The first time I had one of those Finger (finga) buns at bakers delight I thought it was going to be a sweet treat, it's a hot dog bun with icing, and sprinkles. And yet the kids love them....amazing!

shenanigans said...

Damper is made without yeast. It's a soda bread traditionally made with beer to leaven it. And yes, it should be cooked in hot coals in the ground.

Anonymous: I don't know what the American definition of "sweet" is but finger buns are plenty sweet to me. Actually, I do know what the American definition of sweet is - it's chocolate milk with so much sugar it is one teaspoon chemically removed from toffee.

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Rinniez- Omigod-- cooked the ground?? Well they definitely didn't do that at the preschool! Haha. You should totally come to Sydney and we'll make some.

Lorraine- I just realized Craig is a word Australians say exactly as it's spelled. And yes, I say carmel, but I know that it's wrong :).

Anonymous- I can't believe you mentioned those buns at Bakers Delight-- I always wonder why????
I thought they were basically hot dog buns with icing, but wasn't sure. I've bought them a couple of times, my boys eat the icing and toss the rest. Needless to say, I don't buy them anymore.

Shenanigans- I thought chocolate milk was seemed pretty comparable between the two countries... am I missing something?

Anonymous said...

I've just started working with an American, and I am sure he thinks we're all a little weird.

I think all Aussies have a little bit of bogan in them...

A Free Man said...

I don't struggle too much here, helps having an Aussie partner. Also, the accent in SA isn't as strong, more British than the Eastern accent. Still - every now and again (especially on the phone) I just can't understand what the hell people are saying to me.

Marketing Mama said...

That was fun to read - I'd be totally lost!!! :)

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Permanently 23- Your new American co-worker is probably far too concerned with how weird he thinks you all think he is, to be thinking the Aussies in the office are weird.

Freeman- Yeah, the phone accent is the worst. I think I ask people to repeat themselves so often they seriously think there's something wrong with me.

Marketing Mama- Thanks, I often feel lost and often get lost too.

Gypsy said...

Thanks for the Aussie primer. :)

Amy Sheaves said...

This post cracks me up (oh, btw that means…it makes me laugh uncontrollably!).

Being o/s for the past little while I can't believe I discovered reading your blog the word 'hee-yah' has completely disappeared from my vernacular! Shame on me.

Anonymous said...

You are HEAPS funny, girl! You're FULL ON!!! BRILLIANT!!! LOVELY!!! LOL!!! Can't wait to get back to Syd and carouse with you and raise HEY-ALL! XOXO - Becca

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Gypsy- Anytime you want a crash course in Aussieisms just let me know!

Amy- How can you lose your hee-yah??

Becca- Thanks mama! Glad you're back in town and arrived clean (opposed to covered in vomit of course). I will never get on a plane again with my kids w/o thinking of that-- thanks! And you really do need to start a blog-- no really.

Miko said...

It was great to read your experiences here. I've always wondered who other people from over seas thinks of Australia, even though I experienced a little of it first hand. I myself am originally from overseas but arrived here when I was 7. So since I grew up here I never really paid attention to how different Australian accent/language is perceived.

Oh and also, you're pictures are great. Although I've seen them before, your pictures reminds me of how beautiful they really are.

Hehe thanks for the refresher. I'll enjoy the city more tomorrow =)

Have fun!!

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Miko- Thanks for stopping by! Cheers!

Cassandra said...

I'll admit that I still use "ta" to say thanks. It's something that I associate with the generation older than me (my mum and grandmother's generations - born between 1900 and 1950).

But I see Australian mum's teach their children to say thanks using ta all the time - it's easy to learn I suppose.

And "ta" is usually used for an offhand thanks, for something small or insignificant eg if someone helps carry groceries in for you, not for something important.