“So we had the Cross Country the other day, we’re out in the middle of a paddock somewhere and the stewed ants [mothership speak for “students”] were limbering up to start the running.
And Leanne is organising everyone and getting people to be checkpoints along the course, to make sure none of the kids run off into the wilderness. Then she hands me this walkie talkie. What am I sposed to do with this? I says to her. It’s a walkie talkie, says Leanne. I know it’s a walkie talkie, but why do I need it? You have to report back to me when the last kid has run past your checkpoint, she says. Well, okay, but I don’t know how to use a walkie talkie. It’s easy, Leanne says, you just press the button and talk, and when you arrive at your checkpoint I’ll send you a message to make sure it’s working.
So I toddles off to my checkpoint and I am standing there waiting waiting waiting. The race starts and the kids are off, so I sit down and enjoy the sunshine. Then all of a sudden the walkie talkie is talking…. Big Mama on the Hill! Big Mama on the Hill! … I look at the walkie talkie and wonder who this Big Mama person is, but think nothing of it.
And then… This is HQ. Come in, Big Mama on the Hill! Big Mama, can you read me? … I am scratching my head and I just couldn’t figure out what the hell she was on about or who she was talking to and thought she must have a drinking problem. And there it goes again… Big Mama on the Hill! Hello! We are looking right at you but you do not seem to be responding! Come in, Big Mama!”
This is when my sister had to interrupt. “Mum, how many of you had walkie talkies?”
“Three of us. Leanne and the lady at the other checkpoint down the track.”
“Didn’t it occur to you that you were the only one standing on a hill?”
“And also the only one with a walkie talkie on a hill that happened to be a little roly poly?”
“I guess my powers of deduction were a little off. Anyway I finally figured it out so I pressed the button on the walkie talkie and said, Leanne, if I am supposed to be Big Mama on the hill, I am going to have to come down and discuss this Big Mama business with you, I demand a new code name!”