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by Ruane Lipkie

Hi, hullo, howzit, groete, aangename kennis, never mind Australian greetings, which could include anything from Hey to Giday!

So you have just arrived in OZ, and expect English to be spoken here; however, Aussies call a wash cloth a dish cloth and a dish cloth a tea towel, they don't know what “ just now” means, think shame is something bad and “ ja no” is totally contradictory. Aussies have tea at supper time and supper at 10 pm, which is tea and a biscuit.... how does that work?
It can be all pretty daunting when you are confronted with a new job which usually involves a steep learning curve, your support network is non existent, and the rules, customs and protocols are unfamiliar.  Where to live, what car to buy, and what school for the kids, are just a few of the decisions that you face: and at such a huge shift in your life emotions such as anxiety, confusion or vulnerability can creep in.
I am a South African and a Psychologist. I have been here for 20 years, but still shudder remembering how I felt day one! My hope is that this column will be of some assistance to you as you make this life transition.  Based upon my experience, I plan on addressing one topic, and answering one of your questions per month.  If I have an amusing anecdote which highlights the point, I will try to be somewhat light hearted.  You are invited to write in and ask a question or request a specific topic.  If there are many requests, perhaps I will do something more often.

Let's just see how things pan out!

I look forward to establishing a mutually beneficial relationship with you guys.

Please do communicate with me.

Posted in migration | Psychologist
Posted by Ruane Lipkie
06 Oct 2011

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