Word for the Travel Wise (03/05/06)

When we ran our Sydney CityScapes a few months back I pointed out a place to help pick up some popular Aussie lingo, but today I’d like to direct your attention to the language of the Aborigines. There are actually many Aboriginal lingos which are either extinct or endangered, but that shouldn’t stop us from learning a word or two. In fact it should be used as fuel in prep for your next trip outback.

Today’s word is an Aboriginal word used in Australia:

cooee – A call used to attract attention from a distance, particularly in finding someone lost in the bush.

Should you and your backpacking buddy find yourselves on two different ends of the bush remember the name of this search technique and then take action by belting out a cooee to find your pal. Unlike some Aboriginal words this one appears to be used in Australian English and even better for those of you interested in living langs.

Hiroyuki Yokose does a great job outlining Aboriginal words used in Australian English like our vocab word today from which I plucked this piece of information. For additional words you may wish to check out his findings. The Bangerang Cultural Centre is one of the first Aboriginal museums in the country and has a list of words online from this particular tribe. Wiki lists a large number of tribes and languages found in Australia which if you already haven’t set your mind on one in particular you can try picking one off their list. Try Lonely Planet’s Outback Australia guide for additional offline reading and trip planning.