Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Burton Club

The Burton Club: "The Burton Club - Thursday nights from 6pm-10pm

ACMI reveals a little of its darker side when Thursday nights come alive with a weird, wonderful and whimsical program that captures the spirit of Burton. Come along and see the exhibition with friends, then enjoy a drink or two plus some free live entertainment. Entry to the Burton Club is free. Entry fees apply for Tim Burton: The Exhibition."

Love this town!

Sunday, July 4, 2010


Today is a big day. The biggest, possibly, in a big week.

In this past week I have transferred the registration of our car to Victoria. That felt quite amazing, actually, a full fist-pumping in the air moment. Very cool.

More and more I'm feeling like I am really here.

In fact after that big step we have really completed our move to Melbourne. We have a flat, our driver's licenses are now Victorian, even our car is now registered here. The kids are in local schools, we have joined a Scout group and have, in fact, been accepted as leaders ourselves.

What else is there? Well this is Melbourne. The season is winter. Footy season. This is a football town, the football in question is AFL/VFL - known as Aussie Rules. In many ways this is our final hurdle. We are to be initiated into the ways of footy at the hallowed ground of the sport - 'the G.' The MCG or Melbourne Cricket Ground. Forgive for a moment the irony of a cricket ground being the spiritual home of Aussie rules.

What will happen? Who knows. The game is between the Richmond Tigers and the Sydney Swans. We are torn in our allegiances - being from Sydney the Swans are, in a sense, our team. Richmond's Tigers, on the other hand, carry our favourite sporting team mascot. Richmond are known, in recent history, for losing pretty much every game (except the last couple since we were told that!)

Whatever happens, we will have properly joined the spirit of Melbourne.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

That's what I call a great school fete!

Skipping forward to now because waiting to write it all in order is insane. For me, anyway.

Tonight was Miss 9's school 'Twilight Market' which is a fete by any other name, but with more alcohol. Aside from the substantial amount of ink worn by the parents, the eclectic range of looks worn and general mood of acceptance here, the market was awash with the booze.

There's a stall for the (presumably parents) who home brew. They have a bicycle modified with a trailer as the front wheel that holds a keg (or two). These guys were selling home brewed pale ale and cider. Wow.

Beside that stall were the two buckets of drink - one sangria, the other a clear mix with mint and whatnot floating about. Probably deadly - the sangria we took home in a jug as a favour to that stall at the end of the night certainly was :-)

Beside them was the wine stall - you could buy by the glass, bottle or half-case.

Then there is the music - the students performed at the usual standard for primary school kids who have been learning the keyboards, ukelele or recorder for about six weeks (ouch), but they did it in a fun, and most importantly, fast way!

The senior band turned out to be a rock band with an exceptional voice in the lead. This girl's voice actually turned heads. Their rendition of "T.N.T." was so enjoyed (not least of all by the band themselves) that it was given an encore performance after the three song set.

Leaving with the newly anointed (full!) sangria jug was really the icing on the cake, which you could also buy in cupcake sized portions. A phenomenal adult band (the drummer was a school parent) topped off the evening with their bluegrass / swing fusion sound.

Loving Melbourne. Moar like this, plz.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

We are the New Melburnians!

You may spank me like a bad, bad donkey, for I have been a bad blogger. When last I left you, dear readers, my nook of solitude was untouched by the ravages of packing, a truck had been procured and things were, as they say, starting to happen.

If the truth be told, it has all been a bit of a blur since then. Yet here I sit, in an all new nook of solitude, in Melbourne. This morning I walked out onto our balcony to greet the sun (which I find helps my body clock, when I remember to do so) and was greeted by an overcast day and a distinct chill in the wind blowing up the road from the city.

That would be autumn arriving around eleven days early. (Yes I realise that's on the other side of the planet, bear with me.)

It also prompted me to get back to the keyboard. So here I am. Over the next few posts I will fill in the blanks between those frantic days packing up and settling in here in Melbourne. Suffice it to say, for now, that without the amazing help of friends, neighbours and most of all siblings - that truck would not have packed itself.

By my reckoning (which is actually a note scrawled on the fridge) we arrived here on January the 7th. I'm pretty sure we stopped for an overnight sleep in a car park somewhere, so the packing went for another very full day after that last, oh so optimistic post.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Pack up in a day? Not quite.

Today was packing day, after which we are quite tired.

The truck was picked up, though I had to wait with the various European backpackers queueing for camper vans from the same outlet. Nice big 3-tonne Pantec truck. Manual, but that's OK. Small issue of the brake warning light bing on, but they reckon it'll be ok. Hmph. Can't manage to find the brake fluid thingy to check. Deal with that tomorrow.

Have had some amazing help from friends, neighbours & family in working through the house. At various points I wasn't sure it would ever be done - yet now it seems achievable. Just. The truck is half full, the house seems to still be full, despite all the work.

Sydney's ReUseIt community has been great, under very short notice. The MacTalk forums less so, though I did manage to offload a PowerBook Duo 230, Asante Micro ethernet adapter & Duo installation floppy set. There's still a functional Macintosh Performa 580 CD that is likely to be junked. Le sigh.

My office nook is yet to be packed, or sorted for that matter. Then there's the iMac G4 that I've been meaning to fix for a friend for a very, long , time. Must do that before bed. So much to do, so bloody tired.

Then we drive two vehicles with two drivers the 900 kilometres or so from the old house to the new.

Oh crap - I still need to cancel the electricity & gas supply here (and get some switched on at the other end!) Also internet needs to be procured. My plan is to grab an Unwired modem on eBay and use that until I figure this ADSL stuff out (having been on the Optus cable network for internet & phone since, like, forever.)

Jason mentioned TPG as having a good deal - any thoughts anyone? The energy suppliers are a mystery as well. Maybe Choice can sort it out for me. Tomorrow.

Game on

Sitting in my fortress of solitude (i.e. in my little room as yet untouched, mostly, by the madness) while around me the house is in shambles.

We have sent a few ute loads off to the tip. Many ute loads have been spread around to those who will re-use stuff. Vinnies have picked up a bit. Friends the rest - all our garden gear, pots, plants, mulch, potting mix and that list goes on. Toys, the TV, some computers, furniture...

Even my beloved hoard of Classic Macs has gone. As it happens, Reverse Garbage will take any IT gear. What they like will be resold (sometimes refurbished) - what is too old is consigned to this heap, the pile of Chrismas e-waste yet to be.

Tomorrow morning, according to the plan, we pick up a 2 tonne pantec truck and stuff all the remains of our house into it. What doesn't fit, I glibly repeat to anyone in hearing range, isn't coming with us.

The local Freecycle group, or should I say ReUseIt (some politics went on that I didn't follow much) has been fast to take some other stuff off our hands. At least they've promised to. Sydney North ReUseIt. Then we'll have to find the equivalent in Melbourne's (inner?) north to restock.

So much has happened. We have a place, in Northcote. A two bed apartment with huge balcony. Close to the high school we decided on.

So, off to bed for me. Pack the house & clean it tomorrow. Drive down on Tuesday. Unpack Wednesday.

Sounds easy enough.