We have been settled in the new flat since last Tuesday, so we have had just 1 weekend in here. We moved from our relatively posh hotel, to sleeping on the floor with no heating and just a sheet and a quilt. It’s been pretty mad. But the kids just get on with it and are happy.
We had left most of our stuff at a friend of Stacey’s and clogging up an alcove in her bedroom. We had also left 2 large mattresses and 3 deck chairs in the outhouse of the last flat. The kids have basically went unfurnished this time, so they are building from scratch, and oh what fun that has been !
The first night we were let down by the man with a van, so the following night we were stealthily rading the outhouse of the old flat under the cover of darkness, and suddenly carrying 2 large mattresses on a shopping trolley down Randwick High Street. I was breathing through my arse, and although it was dark, we had to walk past umpteen little glass fronted diners with people chilling and relaxing over a meal and a beer, breaking their conversation to have a little giggle at the surreal vision of us struggling up the road under the bright streetlights. It was at first slightly embarrassing, until we realised, we really couldn’t give a shit, and started killing ourselves laughing as we watched the expression on folks faces as we passed each successive diner.
The following day we managed to pick up a fridge from a 2nd hand white goods shop, a nice, clean, and reconditioned bargain. I am not joking when I tell you that the delivery guy put this on the back of his pick up truck, forgot to strap the bloody thing in, and only realised something was up when he went around the first corner and obviously heard a thumping sound, as I watched in utter disbelief as the fridge crashed onto the road – luckily, no one was hurt, but the fridge was mangled, and we were offered a better fridge freezer at no extra cost as a replacement 🙂 We managed to get 2 IKEA beds to fit the mattresses on Friday, 2nd hand, great deal, and from the local Vinnies (OZ Oxfam). We found a TV in the street on the way home. This is what happens here, any unwanted goods are put out on the streets for anyone who wants them, and only collected by the council after a week. It’s part of the environmental policy here, it’s a great idea, but we are streetwise 🙂 so will be heading up to the posh end of town soon to see if we can get an unwanted but loved Naim HiFi and 42″ HD surround sound telly 😉
The settee has to be the funniest though, we spotted one on Gumtree on T’Internet on Saturday night. It was about 7.30pm when we plucked up the courage and called, aware that this was quite late on Saturday night. But the seller was upbeat, and said to just come along as they would be in all night. So out again we ventured into the streets of Randwick, found the apartment, only to find a young family, all JimJammed up and cosied in for their Saturday night telly. Stacey made an offer well below the asking price, which was accepted on the spot, on the proviso we could remove the settees that night !! I felt so guilty moving all this furniture out at 8pm on a Saturday night, watching the confused, concerned look on a wee 4 year old girl’s face as 4 strangers took Mummy and Daddy’s settee away, but hey ho, thats what Mummy and Daddy wanted ?
And off we were again, with 2 sofa’s on top of a couple of shopping trolleys through the streets of Randwick, giggling and laughing at the thought of more folk watching us struggle and seeing this sight !!
To be fair, all the 2nd hand stuff that’s been picked up is in fresh excellent condition, and the place now feels like home. The only problem now, is that anytime we are on a bus going somewhere, I am constantly eyeing up people’s front doors to see if I can spot 4 dining table chairs or anything else we can have for free – this has become an addiction of sorts !!
This weekend we are heading out of town, about 3 hours on the train, to visit Siobhan and James who have invited us over. It will make a nice wee break and change of scenery, and give Stace and Mark some time to themselves. We are looking forward to it, and it will also be good to see the scenery out of town, and take in someplace new. Siobhan has mentioned driving to Canberra on Saturday so we will see how things pan out.
Stacey and Mark are both working Monday first thing. College has finished for 6 weeks, so they have managed to get some extra hours at work. This means the famous Sunday Sesh is on hold for this weekend, and to be honest, I think we all need a break, as the hangovers were lasting until Wednesday !! Last weekend we were out until 4am Monday morning – so much for the health kick !
We are almost on the real move, quite literally, and have booked our cheap frills flights from Gold Coast to Kuala Lumpur and leave in a couple of weeks. It’s been a great here, we are seriously gonna miss the kids, but we need to push on with the plan, it’s just that the past 6 weeks have gone so fast and we have had such a blast in Sydney with the kids, and met some great great people.
KL is in Malaysia, we intend to stay for only a short time, maybe a week, but then push on into Indonesia where we should be there trekking for a month or so. Malaysia is in the plan later, as KL will be the hub for our cheap flights throughout Asia. But we need to avoid monsoons and extra hot weather, so that means East Indonesia, followed by West, then back into Malaysia for a flight to Beijing, China – if all goes to plan.
This is when you start to get butterflies in your stomach and slightly anxious, as we will be walking into the unknown, on a shoestring budget, into strange places, trying to overcome the language barrier and trying bravely not to get ripped off.
It will all be worth it, we are sure. I picked up some more Lonely Planet Guides tonight in a 2nd hand bookshop, and these places we are planning to visit just look absolutely amazing.