Learn New English Expressions- To Lose One’s Bearings



In today’s episode I share a personal story, a scary story of what happened to me recently. I also explain two English Expressions: To get into the swing of things and To lose one’s bearings. Enjoy :)

Links mentioned

Online Dictionary
Magpie Bird Attack Video



Hey amigos y amigas, you are listening to the English Made Simple show, this is episode number 141, number one hundred and forty one, numero ciento cuarenta y uno.

Neehau ma everyone – that’s Mandarin Chinese for Hello and Welcome – so Neehau Ma everyone to yet another episode of the English Made Simple show. My name is Milena from www.englishmadesimple.net, www.englishmadesimple.net.

I want to start today’s show by sharing a personal story…something happened to me the other day. Something scary.

You know guys, just as I was FINALLY feeling like I was settling down here in Adelaide, something scary happened to me.

I am going to share a short story with you, some people may find it funny but I found it a bit scary, just a little bit terrifying… but I did laugh afterwards. So you could say it was funny in the end.

Here it goes…

I was thinking to myself ok Milena, finally, you got a place to stay, found a nice rental property here in Adelaide Australia, all unpacked after a few weeks of living here… and it’s time for you to explore the neighbourhood…By the way guys, as some of you may know, I’ve only been in Adelaide for about 3 weeks, and I am just beginning to get into the swing of things. I still have to find my bearings. I lost my bearings since I moved to Adelaide.

I will explain these 2 expressions in a moment. Listen till the end, I will explain what Getting into the swing of things means and also losing my bearings.

Let me just finish this scary story first. I have to share it!

So as I was saying, after finally getting myself organised here in Adelaide, I decided it’s time for me to go for a walk around the hood, around the neighbourhood. Check out where I am, what’s this place where I live.

And off I went, walking around, looking around – oh look at that, that’s nice – what a nice tree… oh look there, what a nice house. Everything is so nice here, so I go for a walk and I sing la-la-la…just going for a walk, just like that. No not like that.

I wasn’t listening to the Smurfs and walking.

I just picked a random podcast, was listening to a podcast and walking around the hood, paying attention to my surroundings, looking at the houses, trees and birds.

Then I saw this bird, it’s black and white colour, mix of colours – it is a bird that’s native to Australia, called magpie. If you live in Australia you probably know those birds. They look like black crows, those black birds that you see in scary movies, horror movies, however magpies are black and white. That’s the difference…

Right, so I go like, oh what a cute bird, look at it fly away Oh you are so cute. I continue walking along and sightseeing, looking around me, looking everywhere. Then all of a sudden – Boooom. I screamed. Oh my God, what was that? Ouch!
Wait, let me try to recreate this sound for you so you know what I had experienced – Boom.

Something hit me from behind, on the back of my head. It’s like someone threw a rock at me or I don’t know what, something hard, and it hit my head.

What the hell was that … ? I wondered. I turned around to see if someone was behind me but I couldn’t see anyone, except this bird.

Bird in Spanish could be pajaro o ave. In English there is no difference between pajaro o ave, like in Spanish, I know there is a difference. We always refer to birds as birds in English.

So I kept on walking and then I see this bird launching at me, swooping at me from the trees, I don’t know from where… Going straight for my head. It’s like something you would see in the movies, Alfred Hitchcock type of movies, you know what I am saying.

I had to duck down and avoid this bird hitting my head!

When I told my husband what happened to me, he started laughing at me and said next time you go out for a walk you should wear a helmet. Haha What? No way Jose!

What’s a helmet you might ask? If you ride a bike …. if you are a cyclist you would wear a helmet to protect your head in case you fell. And if you were a motorcyclist you would also need to wear a helmet for protection and for safety too.

Can you imagine me, wearing a helmet and going for a walk? I can’t imagine that!

Yeah sure haha

Well, after the encounter with this stupid bird – and I changed my mind it’s not so cute anymore, it’s a stupid bird – after the encounter I did some digging. I did some research, I went online and found out that these particular birds, can be really agro…. Agro is Australian slang for aggressive. Australians like to abbreviate everything. So agro is short for aggressive!

So these birds can be very aggressive. They can be aggressive to the cyclists, delivery drivers and even joggers, and even me! They are aggressive because they are protecting their nest and when they see a human passing by their nest then they see you as a threat. They want to protect their nest.

True story amigos. It was a scary experience, a scary experience in Adelaide…. but now that I know this small bird can be so vicious, I am just going to cross the road next time I see it and try to avoid it.

So now back to the two expressions I shared. After that long short story haha

So the first expression I shared earlier was:

Getting into the swing of things – According to Weon Inteligente or the Online Dictionary – Getting into the swing of things means…. to become used to a new situation, to become familiar with a new way of living. So you know, kind of self-explanatory.

And the second expression I used earlier was –
Find or lose one’s bearings – when I said, I need to find my bearings – means I need to get myself organised in order to feel confident with my surroundings. To lose my bearings – means to be confused about where I am.

So, I’ve been living here in Adelaide for a few weeks and I am yet to find my bearings.

Just before we finish guys, you know what I am going to do, I am going to share a YouTube link of a magpie attacking a cyclist. You can see it for yourselves if you don’t believe my story haha These things are vicious!!

Thanks for listening to my gibberish, you have been jamming with Milena from English Made Simple, take care and watch out for any agro looking birds. That’s it for now, until next time. Hasta la proxima!

Learn English With Milena

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