Yesterday I asked the PM how India was. She said she really enjoyed it, it was a fascinating country and she'd like to go back one day to explore more. She laughed about the fall she took over there, when her stiletto got caught in the grass. I told her it was a good one .. that she falls as big as she does speeches.
I asked her if she knew she was going to say her famous "speech" that morning when she woke up. A firm no, the PM said she didn't even know she was going to say it when she walked into Question Time that day.
I went to India this year too, for World Vision Australia. Travelled out to some really remote villages, got stranded on dusty roads, slept with some really itchy bedbugs. Met some truly remarkable, strong, tough women. Indian women have something I still cannot put my finger on - a hardcore determination to get through, to look after their children, to make things work.
I wrote about the value and importance of sponsoring a child here:
This is the only blog post I came to India to write.
Upon my return to Australia, I unsuccessfully tried to drum up some media interest in the blogger trip to India. Maybe the press were too busy camped outside the London hospital of one of the most privileged newly-pregnant white women in the world. It's funny what passes for "news" these days.
There's huge media interest in the blogger Christmas drinks at Kirribilli House yesterday. A radio show producer complained to me that hardly any of the invitees wanted to talk. I said that's probably because they're a bit hesitant of being ridiculed and spoken down to. Maybe end up on Mediawatch. He basically told me we all need to harden up. Then I went on air for a few "light" questions to be met with:
"Isn't the Prime Minister displaying signs of misogyny ... by not inviting men to the blogger drinks?"
I said Bruce I said mate .... maybe if there were as many communities and websites of men bloggers and writers in Australia, they could score an invite too? We laughed about the poor forgotten woodworking bloggers and I mentioned World Vision as many times as I possibly could.
The PM hosts a variety of Christmas drinks for various people. Why does nobody question the press gallery drinks? Or when she meets with sporting heroes? Or the school she went to today? Why is a female Prime Minister inviting a bunch of females over for a cup of tea SO bloody controversial?
Of course everybody has an agenda ... my four year old son is a master agenda and deal maker. He's just cleaned up all of his toys ... if I don't make macaroni and cheese out of a packet tonight there'll be HELL to pay.
NEWSFLASH: There are a variety of women online in Australia, doing all different things. News websites, fluff blogs, various articles ... we come in all shapes and sizes. Heaven knows there's a few I can't stand. We don't even all hold hands and sing Kumbaya. Some of us aren't even MUMMIES, for goodness sake! Our voices are strong and loud, in Ye Old Internet. I've been blogging in Australia for five and a half years now, seen a lot of things. This year has been the most pivotal, the most annoying, the most hard.
Julia Gillard's team invited me to Christmas drinks for the exact same reason World Vision Australia invited me to blog from Africa and India on their behalf. It's a smart, savvy thing to do. Sometimes I feel like gently taking the hands of certain ageing prominent baby boomers, stroking their sweaty fleshy.
"See this? It's called a "computer." We can do lots of things with these here contraptions!"
Naively, I'll be on Ten's Late News tonight at 10.30pm, to talk (even more!) about the Christmas drinks yesterday. (I stuck to sparkling mineral water because there isn't enough drink left in the world for me.)
I'll also be talking about the growing recognition and power of women online in Australia. Hopefully it won't be a stitch-up. Anyone got any media tips? Maybe I should just be how I am on this blog ... tell the truth out of my mouth-hole with wild abandon, because nothing actually means anything, I've far more pressing things to worry about, and the only real meaning to life is to help our fellow humans anyway.
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