Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

Nov 12 2001

After a scrumptious dinner last night, courtesy of…

After a scrumptious dinner last night, courtesy of Shauna’s sister, we stuffed ourselves with most of an apple cake she had just baked, and then we sat around talking in that comfortable after-dinner haze that really only happens after a nice sit-down meal with friends. Lurvely. We discussed the Australian accent, and I countered the accusation that Americans over-use the “R” sound by commenting that Australians always tack a bit of an “y” sound to words ending in “o”. It’s a legitimate sound in Chinese, so I didn’t have a hard time distinguishing it. “No” becomes “Noy”, Go “Goy”, etc. I heard one boy at the Taronga zoo protesting loudly to his mother, shouting “Noooyyyyyyyyy”, and when I tried to imitate the boy’s cry to Shauna and her sister, they burst out laughing and kept wanting me to repeat it. Language is a funny thing. So is laundry, but I won’t get into that right now.

It was really cold out by then, but the sky was clear. Shauna drove me back to the hostel, which she said was known around those parts as “the ugly grey tower thing”. She zoomed off just as I closed the door, as if she were afraid of something catching her. In fact she was afraid of being run down by the ravenous pack of cars advancing rapidly from the rear after just being released from the iron grip of the red light. It was all quite exciting.

I’m really glad I went to Canberra as well as Melbourne, since the latter is a really pleasant place although I don’t know anyone there, and it was great to finally meet the woman behind the world-renowned “What’s New, Pussycat?”. I almost feel like a star reporter, getting to meet all of these weblog celebrities like Shauna and Jeb. They are the true A-listers, no matter what others think.

This morning dawned just as brilliantly as yesterday, and I walked down to the bus station for my ride back to Sydney. Again I was denied the choice of neighbor, and was stuck next to an older Australian businessman who was constantly on the phone making pointed references to the fact that he was about to go overseas. Most of the passengers watched the on-board video, “You’ve Got Mail!” while I elected to ooh and aah over the scenery, which was much nicer than the movie. More green, rolling hills, streams, rivers, etc. It really is beautiful country. Lots of sheep and white cows. Don’t ask me why there were only white cows. Maybe it’s part of the old “White Australia” campaign, when they only let white cows in.

After we pulled into Central Station, I walked over to the YHA backpackers hostel and was immediately laughed at for wanting to stay there. “You’ve got to have reservations from weeks back to stay here, mate,” the attendent behind the counter told me between giggles. “It’s chockablock, even in the dorms. This here’s a popular place! You can’t just walk in off the street and expect us to have room!”

The hostel on George Street where I stayed before, however, did have rooms, I was informed by Andy, the Filipino guy at the desk, so I’m staying there for the two nights before I fly back to Perth on the 14th.

I called K as soon as I got in, but he said to call back around 5pm, when he would know whether he had any free time tonight. Since I had a few hours to kill, I went over and toured the maritime museum, which includes a navy gunship, a submarine and an old sailing ship. It was really facinating, reminding me of the time I got to go on a cruise on my brother’s ship, the USS John Rodgers out of Charleston, when I was in high school. I spent most of that cruise chasing an attractive Filipino through the ship, and when my brother couldn’t find me on board, they nearly turned the ship around to look for me.

Anyway, I called K again after 5, but all I got was a message saying that that number wasn’t listed. Jimmy and Rick are out watching Jimmy’s hero Andre Agassi play tennis, and I got Jeb’s answering service, so it looks like tonight will be fairly uneventful. I should make some non-individual-dependent plans for tomorrow in case I still can’t get in touch with anyone. I’m feeling pretty tired anyway, so perhaps turning in early isn’t such a bad idea. Half of the computers in the Internet cafe just went down, so I should wrap this up. At least they have javascript and FTP, unlike some other Internet cafes who happen to be named the Satellite Internet Cafe and are located on Elizabeth Street just south of Victoria Street in Melbourne.

In other news, Taiwan was granted WTO membership today, apparently. Woo-hoo! Now I can officially start dreaming about getting a new, proper-sized 4-stroke motorcycle!

posted by Poagao at 11:31 am  

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