The trip to Manly always evokes memories of the song “Reckless” by Australian Crawl, a song from my final year at high school. As an Australian of a particular age, how can you not catch the ferry without singing the line…. “as the Manly Ferry cuts its way to Circular Quay”…?

Oddly enough, I was listening to Swedish pop for most of the trip. It was mostly Magnus Carlsson, the former member of Barbados and Alcazar, in case you’re wondering.

But in one of those wonderful moments of synchronicity, as I was about to leave the ferry I found myself standing next to three Swedes chatting in Swedish.

View of the Sydney Harbour Bridge from the Manly Ferry.

I’m guessing it was a mother and her daughter and probably a friend. One of the daughters was chatting about her handbag, and how old it was.

I smiled (and actually got goose-bumps) as I understood most of the conversation.

I must have had a look of understanding on my face, as I saw from the corner of my eye the mother shake her head in my direction and say, simply, to the others that she thought I understood what they were saying. I looked at her and smiled in recognition.

I still don’t feel comfortable (confident enough) with my language skills to have responded, but it was good nonetheless to realize I wasn’t a complete idiot when it comes to my understanding of Swedish.

I was heading to Manly to catch up with Donna, Greg and Judy for a few drinks at the 16 Foot Skiff Club, a terrific venue that overlooks the water. We had a great afternoon chatting about this, that and the other.

And since arriving home tonight I haven’t done all that much. I’ve listened to some music. I’ve surfed the web. Not much else.

16 Foot Skiff Club at Manly.

Overall, it was a pretty enjoyable Saturday. The major priority for tomorrow is Swedish homework.

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