Following a tip from a Canadian friend I was reading a list of Saskatchewan slang recently, nodding that the Canadians still refer to acres as we do even though both countries converted to the metric system eons ago, smiling that a farmer’s tan means the same thing no matter in what hemisphere you dwell, and discovering prairie oysters is just another name for our mountain oysters (calf testicles).
But then I got to Moose Javian, which by definition means someone who lives in Moose Jaw, and I have been giggling ever since. Moose Jaw? Whoever came up with such a name for a town?
Not that I should be laughing. I mean here in Australia we have such classics as Bong Bong, Humpty Doo, Tom Ugly, Woy Woy and the unfortunately named Numbugga.
In the States I have found Nothing, Cranky Corner, Frankenstein, Dogtown and Mosquitoville, none of which inspire my wanderlust.
The United Kingdom seems to have a preoccupation with the naughty with names such as Boggy Bottom, Giggleswick, Great Cockup, Brokenwind and Tarty as a small selection from a very long list.
Then the New Zealanders have to drive along the Pigroot Road to reach Shag River but other than that they use the Maori language and I still can’t pronounce all those vowels; Waikikamukau (pronounced Why-kick-a Moo-Cow) is but one example although it’s not a town but the Kiwi equivalent of Woop Woop.
You will find the Apocalypse Peaks in Antarctica, Rottenegg in Austria and Hell in Norway.
You may wonder where all this is leading. Well the next blog post we will be travelling in the south-west of Queensland and I initially thought our itinerary sounded a little strange: Eulo to Longreach, via Toompine and Windorah.
But that was before Canada.
And Moose Jaw.
And Punkeydoodles Corners.
And even Climax (Please Come Again).
We’ve got nothing to worry about!