From Scarsdale to Sydney: a spunky recreation of two years Down Under. Ethel Sloan left her New York suburb with visions of a private tennis court overlooking the surf, aborigines and kangaroos around the bend; what she found instead were flying cockroaches, enervated housewives, and lamb chops at 39Â¢ a pound. Husband Bernie was ""the biggest thing since MacArthur"" at the advertising agency; sons Paul and Steven started at a Dickensian public school (regular canings and curdled milk), then switched to the private variety; Ethel had much less to divert her. She didn't fit the Sydney stereotype--solitary vermouth or Valium to pass the day--and she never found another woman who varied from it. ""Wrinklies"" (married women) don't play tennis, use time-saving appliances, or even visit each other; while men remain lean and vital, women retreat to household chores and turn fat by forty--or contribute to the highest housewife suicide rate in the world. ""Not to worry"" was the operative phrase, ""80 percent"" effective the ongoing metaphor; nobody cared--about sharks at the beach, skin cancer, atrophy of human potential; returning to exercise classes and expansive neighbors seemed like coming out of Purdah. Sloan recalls the scene quite amiably, and throws in a six-week Pacific tour and Outback weekend for good measure.