Harry Potter, Kangaroos, Crows and Offspring: Australian anecdotes
Harry Potter is not Australian nor is J.K. Collins
Last June was Harry Potter’s 20th Anniversary, this has brought up memories of a previous trip to Australia: my son and I were in Canberra in 2007, when the seventh and final of the Harry Potter novels, ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows’ was released. Nic was 13 years of age and was a big big fan. We had of course pre-booked our copy about two weeks before. The excitement was such that, on Saturday 21st of July, Nic woke me at 6 am with a cup of tea (first time attempt, no milk, no sugar, very bitter). We then had to wait for the Bookshop to open at 9… My son, who so far only knew a few words of English and had read all the series in Italian, spent the whole day reading and by night, he’d devoured the 759 pages in English!
Crows and Kangaroos
Another Australian anecdote for me and my son: our first night in Canberra, Nic hears strange screams outside. He wakes up, freaked out. “Are these kangaroos, mum?”. Kangaroos don’t really make noise, especially at night! What he heard were actually Australian crows. Their call has a long sorrowful ending – quite dismal actually. Whenever I hear it in a movie, I know it’s Aussie. <<Listen their call here!>> They sound like goats or witches even! On to kangaroos now…
In the morning, the two of us go for a walk in the Remembrance Nature Park, after visiting The Australian War Memorial. A beautiful day. We admire the new-to-us trees and bushes when, suddenly we see something move a few meters from us. “It’s an animal” I say. “Looks big- ish” says Nic. “A kangaroo! No, two! three! loads!” They were big but quiet. Some standing, others lying on the grass, all watching us while chewing. Our first encounter with the marsupials left us both amazed and a bit scared, I must admit. We didn’t linger much there. Now of course I know we didn’t risk anything as long as we left them in peace.
No seagulls in Canberra or Sydney but a lot of beautiful birds like white Ibis, pink Galahs, white Cockatoos and all sorts of parrots. But I love the Australian magpies with their lovely call and Kookaburras are to die for with their funny laughter.
Offspring, The Code, Rake
Australian TV is not only soaps like Neighbours and Home and Away. The Code and Rake are clever series with a twist which we have been enjoying very much and have helped me (sort 0f) get used to an Aussie accent. Politics and corruption in Sydney with Rake featuring a brilliant defence attorney with a deep penchant for alcohol, drugs and dissolution. The Code is about freedom of speech, national security and cybercrime with scenes of the outback and Canberra Parliament. Offspring is a comedy-drama filmed in Melbourne, about chaotic relationships within a modern family.
I hope you enjoyed these first Australian Anecdotes: August will see me fly to Sydney and start a new life in Oz. Keep reading my posts for more stories!
And of course, we’d love you to tell us YOUR stories. Feel free to comment here or on Facebook!