I thought you might be wondering how the whole “moving to Melbourne” thing is going, given that I went on about it for months and then didn’t mention it at all in least week’s post. We therefore interrupt our regular programming for a rambling general update on adventures in Alex-land.
The last fortnight has been two of the longest weeks I can remember. That makes it sound like they’ve been consistently good or consistently bad. The reality is no one day has been consistently anything. I guess the reason it’s felt so long is that an awful lot has happened in a very short space of time. It feels like I’ve been in Melbourne forever and I have to keep reminding myself that it hasn’t been that long at all. Things aren’t happening slowly, life is just moving quickly.
The hardest thing is the uncertainty. Since arriving, we’ve been staying with boyfriend’s uncle in a place called Bonbeach. The main disadvantage of this arrangement is that it takes one hour to get from Bonbeach to the city (or visa versa). I don’t even want to contemplate what percentage of this fortnight has been spent juddering up and down the Frankston line. I’m writing this post on a train, desperately trying to snatch back the time from my day.
While having a place to sleep and somewhere to store our belongings is fantastic, it’s also strange not having a home. I desperately want to unpack, to put my comedy posters on walls again and to hang my new apron in a kitchen that’s my own. I want to live somewhere.
To that end, the last three Saturdays have been spent trekking through Melbourne’s suburbs (once in 40° heat). We’ve been to nineteen house inspections. Dozens of hours have been occupied searching realestate.com, scheduling inspections, judging the size of rooms and the availability of storage and then filling out the endless forms. So far no one has shown any interest in having us as tenants. At best, that’s discouraging. At worst, it’s a little soul crushing.
Every Monday I think maybe this week. Maybe we’ll sign a lease and I can start searching for furniture and buying cutlery. Maybe I’ll finally have a postal address again. Maybe I’ll be able to say, with certainty, where I’ll be sleeping seven days from now.
It’s easy for all this to get you down. I wish I could say I’ve been nothing but upbeat. Alas, no – I got pretty miserable for a while there. But we’re ok. We’re doing everything we can and it could definitely be worse.
And remember, it has only been two weeks.
This limbo world contains a lot of unhappy things but there’s some great stuff too. As if to convince me that, no, I haven’t made a horrible mistake, the universe has started to open doors. This year I’m lucky enough to be an Associate Producer at the Emerging Writers Festival. This means that I get to be involved in the planning and execution of an amazing festival and to meet heaps of great people in the process. It also means I have my own pass to The Wheeler Centre. That’s a pretty nice thing. There’s also a lot of people here who I like rather a lot. When I moved to Newcastle I spent a long time being lonely as I slowly (but surely) made new friends. Melbourne, like a day-time cooking show, comes compete with a set I prepared earlier.
So while I might not have a home or a job (yet) and despite spending more time and money on trains than I would like to, Melbourne definitely isn’t the worst.
Give me another fortnight and I might even learn to love it here.
This Wednesday marks the fourth anniversary of my starting this blog. As is now tradition, I’m using the occasion as an excuse to hang out with people that I like. If you’re in Melbourne, I’d love you to be one of those people. Details here.