Thursday, August 6, 2009

A Formal Outing Part II: A Very Opinionated Girl

Well I survived my brush with formality. All in all it was quite a pleasant evening. Some nibbles and drinks followed by the formal opening ceremony for an auditorium. There were the usual performances and speeches. My other half’s Boss (Her name is Deborah by the way) made special mention of her role in managing the project to completion. Onya Deb!

At the conclusion the centre was opened by the Governor of Victoria Professor David de Kretser. Oz is a constitutional monarchy, and the Governor is Queen Elizabeth II’s local stand in as head of state for Victoria (appointed by the Queen on the recommendation of State Parliament). Oz is a federal nation, each state has its own Governor and The Commonwealth has a Governor-General. There was a lot of debate some years ago about Oz becoming a republic but it came to nothing we are still tied to Queen Liz.

Anyway after the event Deb, myself, and our youngest (the baby of the family was there because her choir performed a couple of numbers at the event) were introduced to the Governor and his wife. Our conversation with the Governor was the usual at such events, a quick introduction and shake of the hand.

We then had a nice chat with Mrs Jan de Kretser the Governor’s wife. She began by saying to Deb that she was pleased to see a woman in an executive role and then went on to ask what the organisation was like to work for and so on.

Mrs de Kretser then turned her attention to our 15 year old angel, asking her what she would like to do after she finishes school. In a usual teenager way the response was of course “I dunno”. She then went on to say she likes Maths and Physics but she wasn’t sure that she would end up working in that sort of field. Our little darling then leaped into a full-bore description of what she sees as the problems of the world, of the failings of the education system and of society in general! All to the wife of our head of state. Our girl is very, very bright, but she has the tact of a saltwater crocodile and a typical teenager’s self centred view of the world.

I stood on the sideline wondering if I could interject about something, anything really, the weather even. All the time wondering, if there was a tower room somewhere I could lock her in, until she outgrew her self opinionated stage, or a prince rescued her, or something. To her very great credit Mrs de Kretser took it all in her stride and was absolutely charming, even agreeing with our darling on a couple of points.

Later, crossing the grounds to get to our car, our angel said “She was very nice. Do you think I was too much of a smartass?”

And now for something completely different a few of photos of this little guy. I took these last summer near Gundaroo in NSW.

He/she is a Shingleback. A species of blue-tongued skink.
I think very cute in an ugly sort of way.They are entirely harmless and have a bluff where they pop out a blue tongue and try to look very dangerous to make you leave them alone


PrettySiren said...

We found a skink in our garage once. I live in Alabama, so that was weird, as I don't think they're native to these parts.

On the note of opinionated teenagers, though, you've got to give her snaps for her willingness to speak her mind, which is something that many young women fail at (for many reasons). (Though, perhaps, that wasn't the time or the place, given the circumstances.)

Al said...

Hi Pretty, I'd have thought because Alabama is warm there would be quite few lizard and other reptile species there. I love blue tongues, they are giants of the skink world, growing up to about 22 inches. This guy was a medium one of about 14 or 15 inches, they are really innocuous and a great friend to have living in your garden (they love eating snails).

I agree 100% about young women speaking their mind. As the dad of three daughters and the partner of a very strong woman I have always felt it is vital that women have the confidence to speak up. But tact is a useful thing to know as well and I think our baby still needs to learn that particular skill.

image_of_purity said...

i love the picture

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