Philobiblon: Four things ...

Monday, January 30, 2006

Four things ...

Having been tagged by The Unheard Word I will do my best ...
Four jobs I’ve had:
1. Packing at the Aeroplane Jelly factory. (I was 15; it was very educational.)
2. Cleaning the Cococabana Night Club in Wagga Wagga
3. Handing out pig recipes while dressed in a Miss Piggy apron in the main street of Dubbo (a cattlemen's town)
4. Burr chipping (cutting down thistles and other spikey plants) in 45 degree heat about three hours out of Longreach. (I was a jillaroo - briefly. I quit before I killed myself falling off a horse or a motorbike.)

Four movies I can watch over and over:
Sorry, I see about one movie a year - none of the above?

Four places I’ve lived:
1.A traditional Thai house over a canal (mosquitoes not as bad as you might expect) in an extensive garden slap bang in the middle of Bangkok. (Thanks Anne, for passing it on when you left.)
2. A stinking hot guesthouse room in which it was barely possible to turn around, also in Bangkok. The owner pulled the fuses between 2am and 6am, so the fans went off. (I lived there very! briefly)
3.On a farm out of Tamworth (NSW, Australia) with a piggery that I ran several days a week. Luckily the piggery was downwind of the house.
4.In a Sixties ex-council London flat with nicotine and tar dripping down the walls. (My current dwelling, now fully done up.)

Four TV shows I enjoy:
Sorry, haven't got a TV

Four places I’ve vacationed holidayed:
1. North Korea
2. Czechoslovakia (as it was then) soon after the Velvet Revolution (not game to go back because it can't possibly be so good)
3. Sri Lanka - close to paradise
4. Siem Reap (better known as Angkor Wat, Cambodia - before the tourists; magical)

Four of my favorite dishes:
1. Macaroni cheese with bacon (childhood comfort dish)
2. Tom yung gung (Thai seafood soup with lemongrass)
3. Pasta carbonara (as served by a little Mum-and-Son restaurant in Bari
4. Chicken with chilli and cashew nuts (also a Thai dish)

Four sites I visit daily:
1. Arts and Letters Daily (Used to read it in Bangkok when it was an intellectual lifeline)
2. The Guardian
3. Early Modern Notes (Sharon was my blogging mentor)
4. Women's eNews

Four places I would rather be right now:
1. Well, on balance here in London, just down the road from the British Museum and the British Library, although I wouldn't mind a week or month in ...
2. Nice
3. Libya
4. Iran (these last two the places I'd like to go next for serious travelling)

I won't tag anyone else for this, but hey, go on, it is kind of fun. It brought back memories of things I hadn't thought of in a long while; in the case of the incredibly sticky carpet of the Cococobana, that is a good thing. So why not give it a go ...


Blogger Frank said...

You actually "holidayed" (you Brits/Aussies and your strange words! *LOL*) in North Korea? Do they even have tourism there?

1/31/2006 05:24:00 am  
Blogger Natalie Bennett said...

Well, I was there on a tourist visa, and had signed a statement saying "I am not a writer or journalist of any kind".

You can find a piece I wrote about it for the Guardian Weekly here.

I didn't make it to Europe until after the Wall came down, and I did want to see what a true Stalinist society looked like.

1/31/2006 10:20:00 am  
Blogger Alex said...

You were a jillaroo? Odd how we get around..

1/31/2006 11:47:00 am  
Blogger AYDIN ÖRSTAN said...

What's a jillaroo?

1/31/2006 01:29:00 pm  
Blogger Natalie Bennett said...

The female equivalent of a jackaroo...

Seriously, it is a peculiarly Australian institution that is not easy to define. You are a poorly paid worker, a sort of informal apprentice, working on usually a huge (by world standards) cattle or sheep farm doing the worst jobs you can imagine. Yet many jackaroos (and maybe even the odd jillaroo) will go on to inherit the family farm, or manage a big company place.

(As for the difference between a jackaroo and a jillaroo, well what really pissed me off was that I worked as hard as the blokes outside, inside I was expected to help with the cooking and washing up, and they weren't.)

2/01/2006 12:20:00 am  

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