Posted by: dsduffy | February 2, 2009

More differences…

What was I worried about? Cameron’s first day at “kindergarten” (preschool) went off without a hitch. Within 30 seconds of entering the room, he found a few “mates” and was playing nicely with them at a table. The tears were not there, not even for me! He had been in school before, in MA, but that was June 08, so I wasn’t sure how he would react. And I thought I would be a blubbering mess since this was his first day of “kindergarten” even though it really isn’t, in my book. Kindergarten as we know it in the US is called “prep” here. Lately I am finding it hard to keep up with all these differences:  kilograms vs. pounds;  liters vs. gallons; Celsius vs. Fahrenheit; kilometers vs. miles; nappies vs. diapers; dummy vs. pacifier; tomAHto sauce vs. ketchup;  wedges/chips vs. fries; capsicums vs. peppers; the list goes on and on. Seriously sometimes I feel like I am learning a new language. When I went to pick up Jake last week at daycare (creche, pronounced crash, not sure what that’s all about) they said he had a fever of 38.5 and I felt like a complete idiot for not knowing if that was really high or not. The whole NAP-KIN incident, making a “booking” instead of a reservation; being asked “what are you after” as in “can I help you” at a retail store; it is a lot to keep up with so much so that at times I just want to hear someone say “what’s up” or “your son dropped his pacifier.”

I constantly have to think before I say something to any Australian, I want to say the right thing, and be understood. I mean, we are going to be living here for the next 2 – 3 years, the language just has to become normal for me at some point. For now, when someone says it is going to be 43 degrees, I just know that is REALLY HOT.



  1. You’ll get there. It is very confusing. It truly is another language and as such it takes time to acquire it. I promise you it does get easier! Hang in there. =)

  2. Shouldn’t that be that you’ll be there “the next
    2 – 2-1/2 years”???? The five+ months you’ve been there already does count, right!!!!??? Not that I’m anxious to have you home or anything!
    Love you! M.C.

  3. You really summed it up– it is like learning another language. In the winter I used to go by– if it’s under 20 degrees we need a jacket– oops, I mean jumper. And I still don’t know what 20 degrees Celsius equals. Our first week of “Kindy” went well too. But they don’t call it prep around here??

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