Chin wag

I was looking ‘rough as guts’ after my morning session at the gym. It’s bad enough when you aren’t strong enough to put your ‘head in a pony’ but one glance in the mirror and I balked at the idea of heading back out. I ‘didn’t look like anything to write home about’ so wasn’t keen for a catch up over a coffee. The ladies are always so well groomed! Did I go? Betcha life I did. ‘Life’s too short’ and the weather was awesome. ‘Not too hot, not too cold, just right’! Better than hanging round at home.


So I’m headed down to the harbour with ‘a skip in my step’ and ‘happy as Larry’. I was about 20 minutes late but ‘better late than never’ as they say. When I ‘rocked up’ I was greeted with a sea of smiles. Now that really ‘blew me away’. I’m usually the first one there. It ‘never crossed my mind’ about what it looked like from the other side.


A cuppa coffee and a bit of a ‘chin wag’ and I soon forgot about my ‘manky’ hairdo. Instead I ‘squirmed in my seat’ ‘with my skin crawling’ as we spoke of escaped phythons, red belly black snakes, and funnel web spiders. All of these can be deadly and are Australian natives. I may be an Australian but spiders and snakes ‘really do my head in’.  


Well that’s my everyday adventure with a few sayings ‘thrown in just to mix it up a bit’.

  • Rough as guts – (Australian) Not well groomed. A bit rough looking
  • Head in a pony – Wear your hair in a ponytail
  • Didn’t look like anything to write home about – Nothing flash or noteworthy
  • Life’s too short – Life doesn’t last forever so enjoy it while you can
  • Not too hot, not too cold, just right – From Goldilocks and the 3 Bears fairy tale from 19th century England
  • Skip in your step – happy as I walk
  • Happy as Larry – (Australian) Happy – “Larry Foley, an undefeated Australian middleweight boxer in the 1890s” https://metro.co.uk
  • Better late than never – You eventually got there
  • Rocked up – Arrived 
  • Blew me away – Surprised / Impressed / Did not expect
  • Never crossed my mind – Didn’t think of it
  • Chin wag – friendly talk in a relaxed way
  • Manky – not great, rotten, dirty (in this sentence I mean it was not great)
  • Squirming in my seat – Feeling uncomfortable
  • With my skin crawling – Feeling frightened in an uncomfortable
  • Really do my head in – Can’t cope with the thought of it
  • Betcha life I did – Bet your life I did – I certainly did
  • Thrown in just to mix it up a bit – Added for some variety

Stories for passage to a brighter day

We may be strangers that meet on a dusty road but together we share stories for passage to a brighter day.

Fragile yet strong. Battered by weather and by life’s storms. You stand resolute. Taken to the brink of despair. You share of the unexpected inquisition that threw your creative soul into a state of flux.

Yet I can’t see clearly. I hear your voice but I perceive through the heat haze of my own story. Wrinkles on the fabric of my life send off refracted and reflected light to your truth. With open ears I seek to listen, to understand, through the noise of beams and shadows.

For what I see is parchment. Parchment known for strength and stability. I seek to see your story written there. A masterpiece, a serenade, a lament. Your memoir; a collection of broken shards brought together inviolate for change.

BY DEE GRANT 2021

I find hearing peoples stories fascinating.  This reflective piece is the sharing of two narratives as strangers meet. Heartfelt stories where something unexpected changes their lifes journey. This is a true story based on meeting with a stranger earlier this week. Our backgrounds couldn’t be more different. 

I studied the Narrative Construction of Reality by Jerome Bruner many years ago and have appreciated the power of narrative ever since.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

As hormones explode like balloons freshly stomped by teenage partygoers you storm off

Teenage angst I hear your cry. You tempted me with your fresh knowledge untested by life’s setbacks. I knew better but I was miserable. I walked away from a parent’s love so as not to disappoint them further. 

Roll the years forward a generation…

Now I hear of you my darling niece. I feel your anger as if it were a forgotten love song. In a world where hormones explode like balloons freshly stomped by teenage partygoers you storm off. Do you know how much you are loved my darling? 

Don’t come the raw prawn with me

Today I wanted to be here ‘in case the sh*t hits the fan’. Mum had a fall today and was taken away in an ambulance. She should be in a nursing home they’ll say. Well ‘don’t come the raw prawn with me’ cause we all know she just ‘won’t cop that’!

That old chestnut

People hint to mum that she should think about going to a nursing home. I’m sure ‘that old chestnut’ will be ‘back on the cards again’. I know she ‘wouldn’t have a bar of it’. Thing is oldies sometimes have no say in it. That really ‘makes mum’s blood boil’. See mum is such a private person. She loves her garden and her own space. The whole idea of being in hospital just ‘does her head in’ let alone a nursing home. She’d be ‘out of there in a flash’ if she could.

Stick to your guns

I was hanging by the computer ‘playing the waiting game’. My ‘heart was in my mouth’ when a call ‘came out of nowhere’. It was a real ‘blessing in disguise’. A stranger calls. She shares of how her nan broke her hip in her 90’s and was sent home after she recovered from a hip replacement. Her nan was ‘happy as Larry’. This stranger says “make sure you tell your mum to ‘stick to her guns'”.

It’s been a while since I wrote a piece on phrases and idioms. I hope these ones help you in understanding this uncertain space. A space where the very thing that draws family together can also pull them apart. We all want what’s best for mum but we all have different opinions.

Phrase/Saying

  • Be here in case the sh*t hits the fan – be close by in case something bad happens
  • Playing the waiting game – Not sure what to do so watch and wait
  • Heart in your mouth – Anxious
  • Came out of nowhere – Unexpected
  • Blessing in disguise – Something unexpected or unfortunate that results in something good happening
  • Does your head in – Makes you angry or frustrated
  • Out of there in a flash – Leave in a hurry
  • That old chestnut – Repeating the same old story so it becomes boring
  • Back on the cards – Discuss something that had been spoken of previously
  • Wouldn’t have a bar of it – (Australian saying) Won’t tolerate or put up with it
  • Make your blood boil – Make you very angry
  • Don’t come the raw prawn with me – (Australian saying) Don’t pretend you don’t know
  • Won’t cop that – Won’t take that. Not happy about that
  • Happy as Larry – (Australian saying) Very happy
  • Stick to your guns – Don’t give in

#Poetry – Sucker for an MRI

The MRI sends blasts of sound, a magnetic force spinning round. With headphones on I greet it’s song. It’s weird loud sounds to soldier on. A veteran now I know it’s way, and settle in for my stay. Bleep bleep bleep and a…boom boom boom, still another 40 minutes ’til I leave this room.

8 things to know are below.

Here I am again. I’m an MRI veteran so thought I’d share how I go about things in this space.

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#True Story – He fell off a ladder

Life is precious and unexpected tragedy quashes thoughts of joy.  
It reaffirms that you need to put blissful times in your life. Don’t avoid doing your will. You just don’t know when your time is up. That is this man’s legacy. 

He went to the garage and to get something off the shelf.

“He’s been out there a while” you think to yourself. “I’ll just see what he’s up to”

‘Famous last words’. If you had known what was ahead would you have walked through that garage door so nonchalantly?

He was there on the garage floor.

He died suddenly, not fading away in some manky nursing home. You know those homes. They smell of pee and people walk around with dolls that they think are babies.

There is no note. There is no misadventure. There is just the memory of you nagging him to stop relying on that shelf to reach further up from the step ladder. “It’s dangerous”, you said. 

Ep 3: #Job Hunt – Twist of Fate

(with audio) Previously it was The Blow In. Now the saga continues! So I was hightailing it back to Sydney. A 10 hour straight trip in my not so reliable car. Cruising along hour after hour. Day turns to night. Civilisation to bush, and we’ve got a heck of alot of bush around here!

It was the middle of the night. No street lights now. Then the headlights dim. Then they dim again. I blinked a few times hoping I was dreaming. Nope, there it was again!

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Ep 2: #Job Hunt – The Blow-In

…what employer would hire some ‘blow-in’ from interstate?

(with audio) Previously it was about That Elusive First Job. Now a new adventure! I had some idea that I was going to be some famous artist when I finished studies in fine arts years ago. I really ‘drank the Kool-aid’ on that one. So I moved north interstate to a great tourist town on Queensland’s Gold Coast. I started to look for work. I looked and I looked and I looked. Month after month I pounded that pavement, applied for those jobs, and wrote those targeted cover letters. Nothing!  Plenty of knock backs. I even offered to work for free and still ‘a flat no’… It was really soul destroying.

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