Kathleen Jodie, a Navajo living in Australia
BATEMANS BAY, AU – Most Navajos live in other states throughout the U.S. and rarely leave the 27,000 square mile reservation. But one Pinon resident lives half way around the world and she enjoying every bit of it.
“We’ve been visiting Aboriginal heritage sites to see the history and culture of the Native peoples of Australia,” said Kathleen Jodie-Elliott from Batemans Bay, Australia.
Kathaleen, who also goes by Kat, said she has been traveling around the world with her husband and have been there since February. They plan on staying in Batemans for another year to explore the wonders of the country.
“I remember in 3rd grade in Pleasant View Elementary School in Golden, Colorado, my teacher Mrs. Tennehill told us about Australia.” said Kat, in an interview with the Navajo Post, “I thought, how wonderful and exotic a place it must be, I never expected to be able to see for myself. But here I am, living in Australia.”
Batemans Bay is on the southeast coast of Australia. Kat says she enjoys the beach and loves watching the Kangaroos. “Now we have a favorite beach, it’s called Pebbly Beach that we go to just to sit and watch the Kangaroos. We call it our Roo-fix,” she said with humor.
She also said they enjoy hiking the landscape of Australia, “aside from the kangaroos, there are other unique animals we’ve encounter while tracking and hiking here in Australia. I love the Eucalyptus trees, there are so many varieties of these trees here.” she said.
Adding, “I belong to the Tl’aashchi’I Red buttom of feet clan and my father’s clan is Ma’ii deeshgiizhinii coyote pass Jemez.” She said, as she explained her Navajo clan, which is common for the Navajo people to identify to.
Kat also said she enjoys the good quality of life of the great outback, “Although I’m a Nurse as well as my husband, I chose to not work while I am here. There’s a good quality of life here and we are able to live well on one income.” She said.
Kat has been visiting the Aboriginal heritage sites to see the history and culture of the Native peoples of Australia, “The people as a whole are very friendly. I probably stick out like a “sore thumb” because people are always curious and ask where I’m from. I proudly say, I’m a Navajo from the Navajo Nation.”
She said they rock there Moc on November 15th of last year and even got the aboriginals to do it, “I actually got to Rock my Moc’s in Sydney, Australia for the “Rock Your Moc’s” day, for the Native American Heritage Month event.” Adding, “I managed to get a picture of myself wearing my Knee-high Moccasins with a couple of Australian Natives, Aboriginals, who were performing on the streets of the big city. They still play the first ever invented wind instrument, the Didgeridoo.” She said.
A Didgeridoo is a hollowed out piece of wood and makes an eerie, but totally unique sound. Australia is huge she said, “about the size of the continental US. We want to do more exploring here, there is so much to see, before we return home, or maybe even go to another continental altogether, to work.”
Kat said they also explored other places like Alaska, Guam, UK, and Costa Rica.