Sunday, September 13, 2015

Farmer Speak


Last week I spoke about the things my children (and specifically my mini-me) say. As I am writing this piece on Father’s Day I have been thinking about some of the funny things I’ve heard The Farmer (and probably most country folk) say.

1. “Up the road” – This could mean any place between where you are standing at the point of conversation, to some place still in the state (or even interstate if you live close to the border). Eg: “We went to a party up the road on the weekend. We drove for almost a day to get there, but it was definitely worth it.”

2. “A few days ago” – Any time between a few days ago up until approximately a year ago. This is definitely a Farmer favourite. Eg: “Remember I spoke to you about that a few days ago?” “That was like, four months ago.” “Yeah.”

3. “Old mate” – Anyone. Absolutely anyone. Male or female, your guess is as good as mine. This one often leaves me truly stumped.  Eg: “I ran into old mate when I was in town. He said to say hello.”

4. “Later” – Any time between an hour and never. Often refers to jobs that need doing inside the house. There is literally a 50/50 chance or less that ‘later’ will ever actually happen. Eg: “Can you fix the door in the kids bedroom please?” “I’ll do it later.”

5. “She’ll be right” – It’s all good. I have this under control. As much certainty as I’m likely to get out of The Farmer. “Eg: “Do you need a hand tying that tourno down?” “Nah. She’ll be right, mate.”

6. “When it rains” – Any time between here and eternity. Often used to give an estimate on when you will be able to do something. The sad thing is that so much of our lives out here revolve around the weather, and Mother Nature marches to the beat of her own drum. Eg: “We’re hoping to do renovations when it rains.”

People, places and times in the bush are all fluid things. Sometimes it helps to have a bit of an imagination (and a fair grasp of the English language) to understand farmer-speak. Without the assistance of an actual translator, I am thoroughly enjoying the guessing game in the meantime.
Do you have any that you would add to the list? Let us know!


  1. Oh these are very familiar and I might be guilty of using them.


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