Saturday, 1 August 2009


No matter how much you think something through before hand, it's always a surprise what hits you hardest in a new place.

I simply cannot get my bearings. A lifetime on the Melbourne rectilinear grid has not served us well in the swirl of curves and courts up here. There's more round abouts than you can poke a stick at and hills and dales at every turn. We have to laugh a lot when we are out in the car because we keep thinking we are somewhere else, should be somewhere else. Oh well, there's always the next round about to take us back. For two map lovin' direction oriented types who have done more than our fare share of travel and place finding, it is unexpected.

There's a reason they call it sunrise beach.

Both D and I have extraordinarily sore calves. So so sore. Lots of time in bare feet on hard floors and lots and lots of stairs and lots of loads of luggage and shopping to carry up all those stairs. We have to laugh about this too - our funny stiff walks and desire to not bend if we don't have to.

A larger house has encouraged both kids to run and shout a lot more. There is a constant squeal and thud thud thud. They don't seem to be suffering from sore calves.

Along with a significant increase in size, the house contains exponentially more white and pale surfaces. This doesn't bode well for getting our bond back if Wil has anything to do with it.

There is also a lot of very nice furniture and a bit of good art, way nicer than we have at home and I can already see the return to normality next year will feel more than a little like expulsion from Eden. I'll get back to you when I work out what the sins involved are.

I spend a lot of time looking for light switches, turning on lights then turning off lights again. Big houses are a whole different beast and I suspect the bils could very quickly get out of hand. I can't imagine having to heat this monster and I think the cleaning may kill me. On the upside it's great exercise just walking around to find each other. Stair master.

It only took D a day to get a step ladder on a table on the deck to allow him to get on the roof and hang our hammock. The man knows no limits when it comes to taking in a sea view in comfort.

Wil has taken to saying (after a sharp intake of breathe) Wow, would you look at that now. Cracks me up every time, and I have to agree there is a lot to wonder at.

There are sharp shadows in the orange morning light. It gets light much earlier in the morning, and yet it gets darker at about the same time. And the light is so much stronger - that expression 'weak sunlight' so describes the winter light in Melbourne, but not up here. When you don't wear a watch and use the general ambient light to give clues about the time you are often up the garden path.

Technology has been our greatest friend and sharpest enemy. Skype, until now not much more than a scratchy phone line and chat server, has totally come into its own. Taking friends and family on guided webcam tours of the new house and letting Amy wave to everyone has been a real delight.

Entirely undelightful has been the multiple and frustrating problems with the giant plasma/DVD/set top box set up. Everything is supremely complicated. The TV doesn't seem to like staying the right dimensions and cuts the bottom off the screen so every time we switch it on we need to work out all over again how to make it the right shape via the set top box. And when Wil wants to watch fishy right now I can never seem to get the fricken DVD to show on the TV. You'd think if you pay that much money for a whole entertainment suite the thing should not require an engineering degree to operate. At home we have a giant box with a small screen from the jurassic era and even though Wil occasionally programs it into Chinese all it really does is change chanels and volume. There's something to be said for that.

Similarly I spent a good two hours this afternoon trying to get our new printer to connect to our network so both D and I can use it from our respective offices. In the end I caved and gave up. I'll regroup tomorrow when I can get some assistance from someone who's smarter than me. Yes, I'm talking to you James. I'd be calling James for help except we can't seem to make outgoing calls on the landline. Apparently we're not authorised. I am dreading the next mobile bill and counting down till the 10th when the landline moves over to our plan and presumably starts working for us instead of telling us off.

We had a market outing today and amazingly the change of states hasn't diminished Wil's desire to run away, grab stuff off random stalls and generally try us all. Shocking.

I am completely loving the local strawberries and passionfruit - cheap, sweet and really tasty. And today at the market Wil found bubbles and I found a hand made curry paste for Khao Soi, my favourite Thai curry soup from the North and a rarity here in Australia. There was also raw honey, sushi, balloon animals and a merry go round ride.

And I drove the car for a short burst twice today. Maybe perhaps one day I might consider this unworthy of comment. Right now it is right up there with three headed fish.

One of the stall holders at the market today (who was selling very nice clothes) stopped me to ask about the embroidery on my skirt and what label it was. I very much enjoyed saying I had made it myself. I gave her my blog address - hello if you are reading this! - and felt like it was a first step into the local making scene.

I am being woken by birds each morning. Such a lovely sound. But still feel like I need to catch up on around 5 hours of sleep from the last week.

The air smells different. Nicely beachy and vaguely smokey.

Amy's new school is veeeeeery different to the old one. They cut down the regular book list so she only had 3 scrap books and half a dozen exercise books instead of the usual quota, display books and folders, regulation colour pencils and 'low mess' crayons, as well 2 kinds of glue, a mess of gray lead pencils, a wooden ruler and a calculator. Oh and a dictionary. And while uniforms are all the rage in some schools, they were the rarest of sightings at the old place. Here they are compulsory, as are sandshoes, a sport uniform (in house colours), a hat with no ties or straps and a library bag printed with the school logo and motto. And get this, her class has a permaculture garden and they sell the produce to the canteen. The grounds are also covered in trees and foliage with a tonne of shade green spaces to play. Amy is going to absolutely totally love it.

We took Wil to his child care across the street where he instantly found a truck and a slide to push it down and had no further use for us. It was a joy to see.

It would be fair to say that both D and I are keen to see Monday come and get the kidlets out of our hair.


Turning Japanese said...

Worthy of a comment (or two)!

I can see that I am going to need several early nights up there. I SOOOO want to photograph sunrise (did I really just say that?). I even want to go to the beach for sunrise. Remind me how early that will be. Go on, scare me!

Tick, tick, tick. That is the sound of time flying by toward the next holidays! Not too long.

I bought a big, sacky (size 10) dress to wear over bathers. It really is huge. Pretty though.

Jodie said...

Oh Sooz, the differences are so different! When we moved to the north coast years ago, I marvelled constantly at the birds, the bugs the spiders - such a proliferation of life! Your post has me missing some parts of that adventure.
I love the photo of Will in the bubbles.

kim at allconsuming said...

And just like that, we're off and running.

Janet said...

wow, it looks so nice! I've heard about those roundabouts and curves, they'd drive me nuts, lucky the pace sounds sort of relaxed and queenslandy.


JustJess said...

Looks and sounds beautiful!

the nest said...

hooray for you all! everyone engaged + busy enjoying. big adventure!

travellersyarn said...

The house looks amazing! The photo of Wil with the bubbles looks quite magical. Moving house is like boot camp on your body - the exhaustion can be quite overwhelming.

Good luck finding crafty people - they make my world go round!

Stitching At Stone Cottage said...

such great addventures for and exciting...touched with the normality...good luck

Leonie said...

Oh my that sounds just lovely, so nice that it is working out for you now.

Tania said...

Wow. After that post I feel like I moved with you.

Excellent to see that the world has not (at all) fallen around your feet. And I too, am hanging for a Monday school drop off - and I haven't been doing any remarkable feats of migration.

Kate said...

That light is just killing me. That's what it's like here in summer. Can it be summer now, please? PLEASE?!?

sewjourn said...

Oh Soozs I am so happy for you that you are finally THERE! And I'm glad you are enjoying it so far........I hope there are lots more great adventures in store for you.

Stomper Girl said...

It looks like paradise Sooz. All that madness of packing and cleaning really was worth it!

habitual said...

Sounds amazing! You seems so lifted and excited, I look forward to reading more!

ps - I'm a grid girl myself. Boston is a grid-lovers worst nightmare. Absolteuly!

genevive said...

Yes Sooz,I am here,reading your blog! hello from genevive at little green dress, I did enjoy meeting you at Eumundi on Saturday, this blog world is like peeking through the doorway in the back of the wardrobe into the land of Narnia, It's SO AmAzInG

Anonymous said...

congratulations! you seem to be getting your head around things remarkably quickly.
and might i sing the praises of a remarkable little life-saver: 'gumption'. get it from your local supermarket. hello white walls! works a right treat on scuffs, metal marks, pretty much everything i tried it on - altho' i wouldn't recommend it on coloured paint surfaces. ;)

kirsten said...

that last comment was from me.