Published: July 2nd 2011July 1st 2011
Mark Twain introduces the Robinsons
After tourin' the Outback and Adelaide with the Noolans, I figure I'll stop a spell in Canberra to say howdy to Jan and David Robinson. I reckon if the Noolans be representing the typical, straightforward Australian Pete, than the Robinsons break just about every other Aussie stereotype. Now, I taught with these folks in Dhaka for two years-2007-2009- at an international school.
Jan is a firecracker. Petite, bright and fresh, and brimming with life, this lady wore her students down to the bone with her curiosity and activity. On weekends she pull me along to the Australian Embassy for a sparklin' glass of Aussie champagne...or two glasses...or more. No Foster's beer for this lady, she'd lean against David, chirping about her weekly adventures while sipping her bubbly.
David, a rector close on twenty years, is a different sort from his wife. David is a genuine gentleman. Transplanted from England to Australia at age 17, he would tranquilly munch his fish and chips while Jan and I chatted so on and so on, hour after hour. Once in awhile he'd clear his throat before inserting a thoughtful comment into our train of gossip.
David treated me like a lady. Mornings I'd show up to school, glistening with droplets of sweat from my bike ride to work and he'd casually remark, "Good morning, beautiful" in his accented English before pouring me a fresh cuppa french-pressed coffee. He was particular about his coffee-the grounds had to be pressed just so. Of course, by the end of two years we both knew he took cream & sugar while I took cream only.
That was two years ago, but from July 28-August 1st I'll be observin' these kindly individuals in their native Australian habitat rather than flavorful Bangladesh.