Governor-General His Excellency General The Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC is not much taken with titles, he contends.
Why, a military man since leaving high school, he's always had one title or another to the point he can't recall ever having been called mister.
Perhaps to hammer home the message he's an everyday sort of bloke, he turned out to his first public engagement as Australia's viceroy wearing an open-neck countryman's shirt and donning the peaked cap of the volunteers who rebuild the fences and lives of farmers struck by bushﬁre and other disasters.
He even brought a home-cooked fruit cake - cooked, presumably, at his new home, Government House, Yarralumla - as a folksy gift.
Soon after, he visited a bushfire-ravaged farm, hands stuck in pockets as he witnessed volunteers from BlazeAid hammering fence posts into stony ground and unspooling fencing wire.
Sir Peter came to the small Victorian town of Wandong on Monday to celebrate what he called the Australian spirit before visiting the farm in the hills outside nearby Wallan.
The very worst of circumstances, he told a crowd of hundreds, some of them victims of Victoria's Black Saturday and more recent ﬁres, most volunteers with BlazeAid, brought out the best in Australians. ''We will bend our backs and empty our pockets to help others,'' he said.
The thousands of volunteers who had joined BlazeAid, formed soon after the Black Saturday ﬁres of 2009, had not only rebuilt enough fencing to span Australia, they had built bridges between themselves and those who needed help, he said.
He was piped to the strains of Waltzing Matilda into the Wandong event, near Kilmore north of Melbourne, by former West Australian police band piper and BlazeAid volunteer Jimmy Clarysse.
But it was clear Sir Peter, who has seen a bit of disaster in his time - in war in East Timor, in the wake of earthquake and tsunami in Aceh and in cyclone-struck north Queensland - wanted this to be an informal occasion, with the focus on volunteers rather than him.
He presented BlazeAid founder Kevin Butler with a new Australian ﬂag. And he and his wife Lady Cosgrove presented Mr Butler's wife, Rhonda, with the fruit cake.
And with that, the new Governor-General was mobbed and it was hard to pick the viceroy from among the country folk around him.
Soon he was on the road to the Wallan property of a young couple, Scott and Liz Pape, who lost their Scotsburn Farm home, almost half their ﬂock of 300 sheep and most of their fences in the bushﬁre that raged through the district in early February.
Dangling the couple's nine-month-old son, Sir Peter looked around at the swarm of volunteers hammering fencing droppers and unrolling wire and said ''here was a brilliant young Australian family being helped by Australians of all ages''.
And how did he feel about being a new knight, he was asked?
''I'm not much caught up with titles,'' said the much-titled Governor-General.
The story A piper played as plain Sir Peter Cosgrove went out to meet his people first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.