Wednesday, March 26, 2014
News to Me!
Just when you think you have heard it all, along comes a new word or thing that you have never seen or heard before to remind you that life is a never-ending journey of discovery. In the last couple of days I have been presented with 3 of these. One is a word, or rather set of words and the other two are things.
I will start with the things. Until three days ago, I had never heard of Dukkah (where have I been?) and the other is a Pobblebonk ( a frog). When the rain started three days ago, a strange sound began out near the pool in the evening after dinner. It was clearly a new sound I had not heard before and some sort of wildlife that was incessant and sure to keep me up in the night. I googled Queensland frog and toad sounds and within minutes had identified the little noisemaker as a Pobblebonk frog. A "red-thighed" Pobblebonk to be completely accurate.
We set off to the corner of the pool deck where the sound was emanating from with a flashlight in hopes of spotting this little pond hopper and although we heard his voice a few more times, we did not manage to find him as he was clever enough to stay put wherever he was hiding amongst the mulch and rocks in the garden bed and all we got for our efforts was damp from the drizzle. I had to make do with the photos on the internet to visualize him/her with each throaty cry. The next day I missed him being fished out of the pool as I was not around for his rescue and it was reported to me that it looked as though he had been swimming for some time and was pretty tuckered out. He was set free to continue to regale the hood with his song for another night.
So, I found it odd that last night at Flickerfest...Australia's travelling short film festival, his name came up again. This time however, in a far more poignant fashion. The 11 minute film, Vote Yes, directed by Nick Waterman of Australia was a brilliant story set in 1967 when citizens were to vote on the Referendum on Aboriginal Rights. In an emotional plea to participate in the voting the young Aboriginal maid in a well-to-do white household reminds her employer that in this country, everything is counted - "people, cows, sheep, cars, televisions...just about everything but Aborigines and Pobblebonks". The impact of her statement was so heartwrenching and now I knew as I sat in the Brolga Theatre watching this powerful short film, that the Pobblebonk had appeared the night before in my yard for a reason.
The other word that I mentioned earlier - Dukkah - came about as an invitation. As I sipped a glass of pre-show Chardy and scanned the crowd for a familiar face, a woman about a metre away from me was doing the same thing. Her gaze met mine and it was as if we both knew we were in the same boat. She approached me instantly and said she was looking for some work colleagues she expected to be there and I told her I was looking for some of my tennis ladies - neither of us were having much luck. I noted immediately that she did not have an Australian accent and was pretty sure she was German and I was right. She was from Munich. Of course, it was inevitable that a woman from Munich and a woman from Toronto would have to share their stories as to how the hell they both ended up in a small town like Maryborough. We were instant friends.
And, so now, I have been invited to her house on Friday night for a Dukkah Party. Maybe I am the last person on earth to have never heard of Dukkah, but in case any of you out there are unenlightened too, it is an Egyptian dip.(see description below) I have since googled it and it sounds delicious and apparently there are many versions of it and according to my new friend, all the rage. Who knew? Anything with nuts and seeds and spices and oil is right up my alley...I can make a meal of that sort of thing. Now I just need to figure out what kind of wine will pair nicely with it and pick up a bottle to take.
The new word(s), which have by now gone pretty viral, are "conscious uncoupling". Thank you very much Gwyneth and Chris for giving us a fresh approach to ending a marriage. So glad you two are consciously uncoupling rather than dumping each other. It is so much more meaningful and zen. It almost sounds like it could be trend-setting. And whom other, than the rich and famous, to redefine divorce? It is surely the new emotionless, less painful approach. One day you wake up and turn to your partner and instead of saying, I want a divorce and all the agony and pain associated with those words...you take a sip of your morning coffee, look up over your glasses and stop reading the paper long enough to utter the words, "Darling, I have been thinking we really should consciously uncouple. Be a dear and pencil that in, would you? Let's tell the kids tonight after dinner."
Just like Namaste is the new "see ya later".
It just sounds so easy and peaceful.
Dukkah is an Egyptian dry mix of roasted nuts, seeds and spices finely blended together. Traditionally dukkah is eaten by dipping fresh Egyptian bread first into olive oil and then into the nut mixture, but it also serves as a versatile seasoning in Egyptian cooking.