Sunday, March 15, 2009

Storm Over Sydney

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Monday, March 9, 2009

Moomba vs Mardi Gras

When hearing the news of our move, many people ask "why?" Which, I suppose, is a fair enough question. By way of an answer (because how can you answer that quickly?) I tend, at this time, to talk about the different types of cities Sydney and Melbourne are.

Can I really speak to the differences between two cities having only ever lived in one of them? Not really, which is why this post is tagged 'myths.' I intend to explore the myths of Sydney and Melbourne along our journey.

Sydney is often accused of being overly concerned with appearances. With a harbour like we have, can this come as a surprise? Sydney is all go, go, go. Chaotic, unplanned. If you will - in Sydney it is all about the Bling Bling. Do I believe this about my home (and birth) city? Perhaps, there's plenty of evidence around if you care to look for it - however we don't really run in those circles.

Or do we?

On to Melbourne. The pace is said to be slower than Sydney. Everyone, yes everyone has to follow an AFL team, at least nominally. Often international musical acts seem to perform more dates in Melbourne than anywhere else in the country. From what we've seen in our visits the city seems a little more Bohemian, which would suit us. The city is somewhat planned, public transport is, well perhaps not better but different!

Melbourne is a city that could put on a regular 24 hour Science Fiction movie marathon for some years - in Sydney the best we could get was a single 12 hour event. Even then the residents complained so much about the cinema that eventually it was shut down and turned into apartments. Long live the Valhalla.

In summary, I usually say something along these lines "Melbourne seems to be more like our kind of people." This gets nods of agreement, by and large, whether from politeness, understanding or wisdom. Doesn't really matter. We'll find out, soon enough.

Test Post

Testing the iPhone app lifecast

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Sunday, March 8, 2009

Reactions to the move

Fascinating to me are the reactions of people to the news. Especially in light of the dramatically different reactions our move is causing compared to some close friends of ours - but more on that later.

It seems to me so far the reactions have been very positive. This should not come as a surprise, I would think, for most people. While some friends have said they'd be sad to see us go, they also agree that it is an adventure and one worth taking. Some agree wholeheartedly with the move - "it will be good for you", they say. I agree.

My own family have been a little less enthusiastic. To be fair, I had always been a great one for dreaming big dreams, talking big talk and being a little shy on the follow through. They know me well - or at least they know who I used to be well.

Every day, in every way, I keep getting better and better.

Better at following through with plans. Better at doing things on my to-do lists. Better at throwing things away (I have great room for improvement here!)

A cousin I spoke with today at a family christening, S., has lived in a few places around the world. She has lived notably in New York and Melbourne. When I asked S. why she was now living in Sydney, the answer was so that her kids would grow up being connected to their extended family. What a great answer. Fortunately for us I think our kids have had a good deal of that experience. Not the best, perhaps, but they are aware of being connected to a greater mob, so I think we can check that box.

So what of other reactions? Well our good friends have moved out of Sydney to a regional area. A large family with four kids and a few pets, the move was - interesting. While we were (I hope) very supportive, others have not been so. Especially their families - on both sides - have been downright unpleasant. Which is really sad.

The reasons center around family responsibility. Who will be looking after their parents? Up until now these wonderful people had been taking on a caring role of their own parents - but they are not only children! Are the siblings scared of having to take over? Feel that it is not their responsibility? Who knows - but these are some of the adverse reactions that can come up.

How have your loved ones responded to you moving away? How have you dealt with those reactions?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

So it begins

A few days ago I dropped a bombshell on my wife - yes, we can move to Melbourne.

It took about ten minutes of convincing her that I had finally caved in. I had been holding out for a very long time.

In fact pretty much all the time we've been together, if her side of the story is to be believed. My side of the story is that I have only become aware of her desire to move to Melbourne in the past few years.

Moving has been quite a traumatic experience for me, those few times I've had to do it. Yes, I am a bowerbird, a collector, a hoarder if you will. There is a deep relationship between me and my stuff. Moving house seems to involve getting rid of stuff. See the problem?

Well now is my time to change. Eliminate all of that stuff that ties me down. Motivated by a post over at Get Rich Slowly, Cheap World Travel and the related Simplicity Movement I am embarking on a journey that, frankly, scares the hell out of me.

My wife, however, is excited beyond words - and that makes it all worthwhile.