FEATURE JOURNALIST

"Myths, Legends and Lankawi"

There’s a long running urban myth about a group of professional, partner-having, gym-going, hobby-pursuing, commitment-laden women friends. In this legend these lady friends finally come good on years of talking about going on a trip together. They clear their calendars for a week and they meet on a little island to sip cocktails, lay in the sun and partake in a cultural adventure or two between massages. This is a myth, of course.

I’ve never been one to believe in myths and legends. I’m a skeptic. I’ve always thought that was a healthy way to be. Besides, my two girlfriends and I had talked about our tropical island dream far too many times for it to ever become reality.

Langkawi is an archipelago of 104 islands sprinkled along the northwestern coast of Peninsular Malaysia. These tropical islands are the site where the Straits of Malacca shake hands with the Andaman Seas. Langkawi island is as steeped in local legends and myths as the atoll is drenched in sunlight. For every natural phenomenon of the land and sea there is a tale of otherworldly explanation. (more…)

"What the Fffff … Flying Saucer?"

In late January NASA announced their plans for an “asteroid redirection”. Yes, just like a traffic cop might wave a white-gloved hand to steer motorists away from a road hazard, they’re going to redirect the path of a giant piece of space rubble … Pardon?

Last week, I could barely contain my pride when I worked out how to colour-code the folders on my desktop. I told everyone who came within earshot about my near-savant gifts with technology and the colour-wheel. Everyone.

There are a couple of ideas the team at NASA are working on to make the asteroid adjustment. One of which is a giant inflatable sling to catch the asteroid then fling it into lunar orbit. They are actually at a point in technology and know-how, where they can move not only mountains, but huge, hulking space boulders … Excuse me? Say what now?

Recently, in what I considered to be an ingenious employment of wit and fishing line, I staged a selfie with a flying saucer in the background. It took a whole afternoon and more than 1 stiff drink, but I think my 12 Twitter followers will agree, it was time very well spent.

Meanwhile, on the self same planet, others are working out systems to change the path of an asteroid … Er … huh? (more…)

"Mother Knows Best"

A nun in profile …

Mother InferiorIn the bedroom of a religious-relic-laden house in Sydney, a sister begins the closely guarded ritual of donning the nun’s habit. Over neatly pressed underwear, a voluminous black tunic with immense sleeves, is slipped into, leaving the body entirely covered, neck to floor. Over that, the scapular. With well-rehearsed flicks of the wrist the white wimple is tied at the back, leaving only the face and hands free of covering. In quick, graceful succession, the white starched circular bib or “guimpe” and the “bandeau” are added… A pause for reflection, and gentle adjustments… Finally, in crescendo, the black veil is drawn up and over, and pinned with large pins at the crown of the head … “To keep it neat”, is the smiling explanation. Turning and checking everything is in place in the mirror, the vision of this Franciscan nun inspires a little awe. This ritual dressing would inspire one to applaude, if it were appropriate. It isn’t. There’s too much majesty in this image. And this Nun’s cleft chin is so carefully shaven that you’d almost forget you were looking at a man. Almost. He turns and smiles in way that it is at once reverent and wry. (more…)

"The Potter & The Great Wall"

I remember a time, I was 8 years old and my third-class teacher explained that we were about to begin a unit on China. I precociously raised my hand, proud as punch to have some personal knowledge about the subject to add, and sure that the rest of the class would be riveted. “My Dad helped to build the Great Wall of China” I explained to my teacher and the rest of the class. The following look of disbelief that rose on my teacher’s face I found to be odd and a little annoying. I took a patient breath and explained, “The Emperor asked him to help because he’s a good potter and knows a lot about firing techniques and could help out …” My dismay at my teacher’s timidity and lack of excitement was rising so I went on, to help the obviously inane woman overcome her awed silence, “The Emperor was so impressed with Dad’s glaze work on the bricks that he gave Dad a beautiful silk dress with gold thread through it, and Dad bought it home, and took the thread out and bought our house!” My teacher paused and smiled then asked, “Are you sure about that? You might want to ask your Dad again” … “Of  course I’m sure, how else would we have bought our house? He’s an artist. He showed me the dress” To answer her persistently disbelieving face I added, “he had the gold thread replaced with yellow once he’d bought the house – his friend’s a weaver!” (more…)

 

Georgia is a member of both the Australian Writers' Guild and The Writers' Guild of Great Britain, who's support and commitment to the industry she thoroughly values.  http://www.awg.com.au/            http://www.writersguild.org.uk/