Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.

...Robert Frost...

Monday, December 27, 2010

One Year Down

Wow! I had the best of intentions with this blog, capturing our first year here. But life got in the way and I just kept thinking what's the point? Then somehow or another I came across it again tonight and realised how long it had been! And there were two comments!! Someone had commented on one of my posts! Scary. That means someone was reading them! Who would have thought??

Well, where to from here? Couldn't possibly capture the whole in one post, so a brief summary of our first year here will suffice. This is how I look at it- we are one year into the settling in process. I think this process is at least 2-3 years. 2-3 years to really feel connected and part of a community. We have made lots of acquaintances and dare I say it, we are making some friends. There seems to be a lot of people who have also moved here in the past few years, so we are all in the same boat. Another observation- smaller towns have a great sense of community. People are genuinely keen to get to know you.

Have I regretted the move? Not for a second. Do I miss my Adelaide friends? Absolutely. Have been back to Adelaide twice but have managed to rendezvous with J on at least two other occasions. Thank goodness for skype and my $1000/ month phone plan!! Do I miss the shopping? Oh boy I miss the shopping. Nothing but lower end chain stores here, but really it has only illustrated how much I shopped before and how much I didn't need to!! Actually, it was a good thing I did before as it was stocking up for life here!

We have bought a house which has helped this feel like home. This is the first hose we have owned where we can actually do what we want as we know we are staying. We can do things for ourselves. So we have renovated the lounge room, transforming it from an exposed brick room with blue ceilings to something that belongs in the 21st century. Have spent what feels like a lot of energy and money in the garden trying to screen us from the gazillion neighbours that can currently look in on us. And yet, we will still have to wait a few years to achieve the desired results.

The kids, well the kids settle the easiest. All three have settled into school, sport etc without so much as a blink of an eyelid or a hiccup. Okay, so maybe B's could have been a little better, but settling into a new school at 15 is more about establishing friendships than academia. Next year though, he wont have that excuse.

That'll do for now. Maybe I'll have other reflections on other aspects later! Especially about waking up in our own home on Christmas day for the first time in 17 years!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Cannelloni ain't always as it seems....

Moving is hard work. I'm not just talking about the physical aspect, but the mental and emotional process as well. It takes you out of you comfort zone and forces you to step out and bare yourself. Which can be a very vulnerable position. So when I was invited to a ladies bible study movie night, I thought I have to doit. It wold be a great way to meet like minded people in a safe environment. The movie we were going to watch was Julie and Julia. I had mentioned to my friend J that I was going to see it, and as she had seen it herself the weekend before, she thought I would enjoy it. Just as I was leaving my house, she texted me. Watch out for the cannelloni part. Interesting, cryptic. Okay, I'll watch out for the cannelloni part.

We settled ourselves and just as the movie was about to begin, I casually asked if anyone had seen the movie before. Just one. My friend told me to look out for the cannelloni part, must be a funny scene with cannelloni. The movie begins. At some point there is a cannelloni scene. Oh, this must be the part J told me to look out for. Yes, I vocalised this to the lovely church going group. Now, because I intend to try and become part of this lovely church going group, I cannot mention any more about the cannelloni scene. If you've seen it, you'll know what I mean. Not exactly the thing you highlight. So, as things unfolded I gulped and then proceeded to sit there in stunned silence.Everyone else proceeded to sit there in stunned silence. It was just one of those moments. The movie continued and we pretended nothing happened. I badly wanted to explain. It's not my fault,. You see I have this friend...

What have I learnt from this episode? J is trying to sabotage my attempts to find friends here, making me an outcast in this small town and forcing my return to Adelaide. I am going to have to work hard to redeem myself. Lucky I love you J!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

So we survived the worst storm Melbourne has seen in a century by being busy trying on Daisy Duke shorts. How's that. I can't believe we missed it. We waded in sometimes shin deep water all the way back to the apartment. I have to tell you, it is very lucky I have a friend as reliable as J. Believing it to be a beautiful sunny day as I dressed in the morning, I wore my new bra (that J had bought me in Adelaide as I couldn't source them in my new home town. I was feeling particularly perky which made me realise I should replace my bras more often than every 5 years). No problems there. Lovely white t-shirt which is all well and great until you are walking home in the aftermath of the worst storm Melbourne has seen in a century. I kept asking J if all was in order and she kept reassuring me it was. But, alas, we arrived home and the mirror told me a different story! There is even photographic evidence which I am considering going to court over in order to prevent it from EVER appearing on J's facebook page.....

Drenched and numb from wading through water that resembled glacier water we rafted in in Alaska due to the hail, we arrived back at the apartment to discover that there was no hot water and only a tin of chicken soup for dinner. Not to be deterred, we dried out shoes in the oven, ate chicken soup by candlelight and got ready to see Mamma Mia without a shower. The flooding had closed a lot of the streets, but we were determined to make it there anyway. If we couldn't catch a taxi, we'd walk. We were on a mission. Fortunately we were able to catch a taxi not far from the apartment and we were able to get through.

. After the big event, we walked through Chinatown and back to the apartment. Then it was a couple of hours of talk, chocolate and bananas at 2am and stretching exercises (don't ask as I'm not sure I could explain). And that was it. Sunday home again and the 4 days in Melbourne was over. Back to reality. I mean I love my reality, the kids and all, but I miss the friendships I left behind in Adelaide. As I reflect, it's not just the Adelaide friendships I miss, but the many from our various residential locations. I know there are friends here as well that I will grow to love as much, but still, there is something missing. I guess it just gives me an excuse for lots more Melbourne weekends!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

What Storm?!

There is nothing more refreshing for the soul than a weekend away and especially a girls weekend in Melbourne. So that is what I did last weekend. J and I had been counting down for months this exciting weekend. We bought the tickets to Mamma Mia last year before we left Adelaide and I was so excited to see J again and just have some time out.

It is impossible for me to explain the kind of trouble J and I can get ourselves into without breaking our sacred code of silence "what happens in Melbourne stays in Melbourne". Lets just say that there were vinyl dresses, lots of sushi and chocolate and bananas at 2am involved in a very "fun" weekend. Of course, there were several special features put on just for us I'm sure. The Moonba festival was on as well as the biggest storm in living memory. No, I dont mean J and I shopping up a storm although that is exactly what we were doing when the storm struck. Well, I guess thats not theoretically correct. We were trying on clothes which we had no intention of buying. Wait a minute, let me backtrack. Back to lunch. We had sushi. Have I mentioned that last week I was having a crazed sushi craving, with no sushi to be found anywhere. So, I was determined to have an overload on sushi whilst in Melbourne to tie me over. So, we were eating sushi soaking up the sun and doing us a spot of people watching. Naturally we progressed to deciding to hit DJ's and try on a variety of outrageous outfits that we had no intentions of buying. In fact, the more outrageous the outfit, the more determined we were to try it on.

We entered the change rooms with our amazing selection of outfits, ranging from braless maxi dresses to daisy duke shorts. Okay, I feel a need to explain these shorts. They were short cut off denims that were covered with silver studs and cost $4oo. Not exactly what post 40 year women should be wearing, but definitely worth trying on for the entertainment value. Maxi dresses first. The psychadelic pattern looked amazing on J, really brought out her eyes. Actually, they longer she paraded in it, the more convinced I became that she should buy. Mine, on the other hand, lacked the special "something" necessary to convince me to buy it. It was either that or the fact that I had to go braless.Not sure which one, close call.

Anyway, we progressed to trying on the Daisy Duke shorts with some stunning black tops. As we pulled on the shorts a very loud noise began to resonate.

Me- "That sounds like rain. How could we hear the rain on the second floor of a 4 story building?"
J- "Not sure"

Noise gets louder, very loud.

Me- "That sounds like hail."
J- "I think it's just someone dropping a box of coathangers."
Me - "You think? It's pretty loud."

Whatever. The deafening noise wasn't going to deter us from trying on the Daisy Dukes, so we pressed on. We gushed at the fact that our legs looked good (LOL) and blushed at the thought that maybe we could pull them off. Did I mention that they were covered in studs which meant they weighed a tonne and would require some kind of brace system to keep them up. I mean really, ew could do this. But upon consideration, we decided that with a price tag of $400 we could possibly better utilise the combined $800 on something much more meaningful....such as another girls weekend.

So we handed over the garment to the room attendant- "You taking anything today girls?" "Hmmm, no today thankyou, the shorts were very flattering but we have decided to feed a third world country instead."

And then it hit us. We excited the change rooms to find that there must have been far more action outside than in as everyone pressed themselves against the windows. Not ones to miss out on action, we headed to the windows to realise that we had been transported into another world. Firstly, where there was previously a street, there was now a gushing stream. Where there was a sun beaten pavement, there were mounds of hail. We shook our heads. Were we dreaming? Apparently not.

"Umm, J....I don't think it was a box of coathangers..."

Friday, February 26, 2010

In The Beginning

Well, after much procrastination, it is time to get started! I have for so long wanted to document my everyday life, but just keep putting it off. I read sewing/craft blogs and think I would love to have one of those, but don't do enough sewing to have one devoted just to that. So rather, this blog will just be a personal waffle of the many different things that happen in my everyday life. I haven't really considered that it will be viewed by anyone else, so a lot of the content will be a very personal reflection. So if you happen to come across this, I'm sorry about that!