Friday, December 14, 2007

You are #3 in the queue...

Oh god that's a long flight. 22+ hrs on top of a very late departure from Heathrow. 3.5hrs sitting around the rather unimpressive Terminal 4 is not a good prelude to any long distance journey.

At Singapore we had to get off the plane and take all our bags. There's no time to shop, but a glance over the wares shows there are no bargains any more, and you essentially forego any warranty on electronic items by purchasing there. Then the Singapore airport security rifle through your bags mercilessly before you can reboard. They found a tiny little swiss-army gadget on a keyring buried somewhere deep in my bag, which has a blade that wouldn't threaten a Barbie Doll. That was confiscated and I had to sign for it. Complete waste of time, even aside from having to repack my bags after they'd scattered the contents over multiple trays and scanned them again and again.

Crossed into Australia somewhere near Broome at about 1am, but there's still 6.5hrs more flying time to Sydney. My first view of the ground in daylight is around Broken Hill, a brown expanse like patterned formica broken up with old stream beds and billabongs. There is little variation in the terrain until we reach the Great Dividing Range well into the last hour of the journey.

Touchdown a little after 7.30am. I'm through customs quickly, my bag miraculously off the carousel in the first few minutes. I check my email while waiting and there's a touching quantity of email and Facebook messages from friends and readers. (I'll get back to everyone individually as quickly as I can).

... and then on to Marrickville. It's a 15 minute journey and I'm looking for new buildings, admiring the greenery. After 30 countries in as many months, you only have to glance at a few trees to know that Sydney is definitely the most exotic place on the list.

My house is empty so I'm staying up the road at Phil's for a few days until I have enough furniture and services. Showering a day and half of cattle-class stink off me is my first order of business and then Phil whizzes us up to Newtown to breakfast at VargaBar. Mr Huxley joins us midway through the first flat white of the morning.

Back to the house for a quick inspection. I haven't lived in this house for nearly 10 years but there are still my signs of my handiwork everywhere. Succeeding owners and tenants have made some improvements, but the gardens front and back have been eviscerated. My lemon tree out the back gone, the gardenia near my bedroom window at the front, source of gorgeous afternoon fragrance, also gone.

Everything inside appears to be in good order but the dishwasher door is jammed shut and there are no garbage bins. I'll have to call the council to organise those before my moving-in rubbish piles up. I call the energy company to get continuity of gas and electricity service. Phil takes me into town to collect a rental car and then I'm off to my storage facility to remind myself of what I have, and what I will need to get in the coming days. I don't waste the visit, and fill the car up with smaller boxes and bags from near the door to take back to the house.

The afternoon sees an hour frittered away talking to Optus about broadband, phone and TV plans. Choices seem to be much more restricted than when I was organising the same things 4 years ago. My energy level is running low, but I'm determined to do as much as possible that will save waiting time over the next two weeks.

1 comment:

  1. Hello Mike!
    Moan happened in the airport of Singapur and badly the moment.
    I include/understand well and you traveled to 30 paìses? of being so it envies and happiness by you.
    Greetings from Argentina.

    The doors of my blog remain open for you and your precious Lobo:0)