Thanksgiving is one of the American holidays that we enjoy most. Tonight we celebrated Thanksgiving in NZ with our neighbours (the Meyers) and a couple of friends (the Russells). Our neighbour and I planned to have a joint Thanksgiving dinner a couple of weeks ago. Everything was quite relaxed, and no fuss. Fiona made scalloped potatoes, peas, asparagus and a beautiful center peace for the table; Ngaira made dinner rolls, apple pie, and kiwi roasted chicken with stuffing, and I made roast chicken (American Turkey trimmings), pumpkin pie and mulled apple cider. The Meyers offered their house for the occasion. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we ate to our heart’s content. The food was delicious, and the company was most enjoyable. It is wonderful to be able to share an American tradition here in New Zealand. (Including our own tradition of forgetting to serve the cranberry sauce four years running 🙂 )
Jim just posted some picture of Kyoto, Japan.Â Go to the Flickr site or follow the this link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kalafut/sets/72157594372430988/
The problem with living in different countries that speaks “English” is, each country uses the language differently.Â It sounds different and people use similar words differently while speaking and writting.Â When it comes to “slang”, that is a different area altogether.Â The title of this post “A bunch of crock”Â was my creation due to my lack of familiarity when it comes to American slang.Â I meant to say “that’s a bunch of crap” or “that’s a crock of shit” …..Â but it came out as “that’s a bunch of crock”.Â Â Obviously, being the “foreigner” (I seem to be the foreigner eveywhere lately :-)) i did not even realize that i got it wrong until I said that to Jim on a topic broadcasted on tv. Â I promptly got this blank stare back.Â Â The look, I’ve seen before basically says “I have no clue what you have just said” :-).Â A bunch of crock?… crock pots?Â Ahhh.. here we go again.. lesson 921, honey it’s a “bunch of crap” or “a crock of shit”.
Not the most highly intellectual blog, I must say but thought it was interesting.Â I wonder how much more slangs that I accidentally used incorrectly.Â When I return from NZ, I should have another bag of mixed, confused, newly invented Kiwi slang to use after I have completely butchered American slang.
I sent my absentee ballot in a few weeks ago, have been watching the polls daily, and catch what news I can about the election. There is a bit of coverage here, but nothing like the US media–which is both good and bad, but mainly good. I can access most of the news and analysis that I want over the net and don’t have to dodge the lame campaign ads and looping sound bites. Nothing but serious research here… And now I’m off to watch that HBO “Hacking Democracy” video that everyone is hyped up about. 🙂
Hell Pizza is a successful restaurant chain in New Zealand and one of my favorite take-out destinations. Their flashy website and ads are quite clever, but I did a double-take upon seeing a big billboard with this on it:
These have been around for a while and there was some debate over the appropriateness back in 2005, but they’ve obviously stayed put.
This morning I took a walk on a path behind the Trimble Navigation office.Â In the 15 mins of walking, I had many people in work clothes and school children cycling pass me.Â I guess that is a sight I will not see in Peoria, IL.Â I don’t think our diet in the US differs that much from NZ but the difference is people here do tend to get out more often for walks and other social activities.Â The area around Christchurch has plenty of walking paths versus the single one closer to town which is Rock Island Track.Â I remember being so glad when Riverplex was built and they also put in a walking/running path behind the facility.Â The road in Christchurch also has biking lanes put in which makes it relatively much safer compared to ridding a bicycle on War Memorial Dr or Â Route 6 with semis passing you at 75mph.
Around Christchurch there are also social rugby teams, netball teams, recreational cycling and many more activities generated by the community themselves with a little help for the city council.Â Â What of Peoria?Â I definitely think the Race of the Cure, Steamboat and Recreational Volleyball is a start but there is room for improvements.
Libraries… is another item that I see quite visible all over Christchurch. It does not have to be massive, grandios, or super high-tech.Â It just has to be functional and practical.Â A corner library shared by a couple of subdivisions maybe?Â
I like Peoria, and miss it but I wish there areÂ more significant littleÂ changes instead of massiveÂ project that is suppose to be the silver bullet to all problems.Â
I guess our trip to Fiji was timed right. There is a lot of coverage here about a possible military coup, and Australia and New Zealand are preparing evacuation plans in case the situation deteriorates. There were Fijian coups as recently as 1987 and 2000.
There are reportedly about 3500-7000 Kiwi tourists in Fiji at any given time. A lady was interviewed by TV3 just before departing for Fiji and seemed a little more comfortable than I would have:
“…I just told my family I might be coming home on a boat instead”, she said.
While a tale of being evacuated by the military would make an excellent blog entry, I’ll pass.