Saturday, January 30, 2010


I reserved 10 nights in a motel, was advised it was smallest room near road but when I arrived, discovered it was also beyond the range of wifi. However owners, when told wifi was going to be very important to me,  upgraded me to largest room for 6 nights at no extra charge. Have now spent 2 nights back in small room which is very very small, using the carpark to internet. Has been hot (for Dunedin) 25'C, but today a cold change so now sitting rugged up.

Longer term accommodation seemed a problem as I was unwilling to enter into a long term lease. After trying several agents I was advised of a motel which had special rates for long term accommodation.  On Monday I am moving to a self-service room at $300 (including wifi) per week as against the $95 per night for the very very small room at the moment. The new motel is suppose to be modern and funky with uni students staying there, will report later.

Spent an afternoon looking at small cars. I know very little about cars and have no interest in them except getting from A to B.
Am renting a Hyundai Getz and looked at Honda Jazz, Suzuki Swift and Ford Fiesta. Decided the Fiesta was best although dearer and have put a deposit on one. Suppose to be available end of next week and have been offered a free loan of a car after I return the rented Getz next Tuesday.

Have been informed, after ringing several wrong numbers given to me in Sydney that my unaccompanied luggage arrived Christchurch on Thursday afternoon and is being driven??? down to Dunedin. It will be available, customs permitting, on Monday. Really do not want it now because as mentioned I am in a very very small room.

Inspected inside of 9 homes and rejected from outside about a dozen more.  Made offer on one yesterday and after some haggling and rising of price, owner accepted. Have signed agreement subject to building survey and, all being well, settlement will occur on February 25.

Will try to blog more frequently next week and give more details of house when I am in a wifi equipped room rather than sitting in  a cold wind in the motel carpark.

Now going back to the very very small room to get warm.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Leaving Australia Pt 1

I know, I left 3 days ago but things have been so hectic.  I had to post about the sermon at church while it was still fresh in my mind but I will go back to the moving out of my home of 28 years nearly 2 weeks ago now.

The removalists were booked for Tuesday and it was a stinking hot, humid day.  Even the fit young men said it was not the weather they expected in the Mountains. You did not expect it 20 years ago but it has become more and more common.

The Ezi-Bin had been delivered the day before and so first thing, I dragged my bed of over 30 years into it. Luckily my neighbour saw me struggling and she came and helped me with the final heave ho of the base.  By the following night, it (4 cu m) was full, so was my Otto bin and the recycling bin (they had been regularly filled for the past 3 or 4 weeks) and I had taken a trailer load to the tip. I sold my car and trailer to the guy across the road and he was happy for me to use them up until the Wednesday although he paid me a week before.

A truck came and collected my 34 year old refrigerator, 20 year old washing machine and microwave and an old filing cabinet that was probably used in the Ark by Noah (I purchased it 2nd hand when I was studying at university in the 60's.

My sister arrived soon after the removalists but there was not a lot we could do except empty out some of the area under the house. We just tried to find somewhere to keep cool.

By the end of the day my possessions had been reduced to a quoted 18 cu m (90 boxes) which is to travel over the Tasman by ship, 3 suitcases weighing a total of 42 kilos which I sent as unaccompanied air luggage a week later and is supposed to arrive by the end of this week and another case with 21 kilos plus onboard bag including laptop which I brought with me.

The removalists took about 6 hours to pack and load.

My sister drove me to a nearby motel for the night and I took her to dinner at the Sports Club.

Wednesday thankfully was slightly less humid.  My sister, as usual, took over and worked very hard with the vacuum cleaner, while I went to the tip as described and cleaned out cupboards. I thought it would take about 4 hours but it was closer to 7 hours by the time we left and returned to the motel in a heavy thunderstorm and again I took her to dinner, this time at a hotel in the local town.

Thursday was much cooler after a southerly change and there was  mountain mist which I remember on the afternoon of my first day in the house - January 4, 1982.  We made our last visit to the house to collect my remaining suit cases and my sister's cleaning equipment and visited my neighbour who was in tears and then took the keys to the estate agent. Strangely I was not as upset as I thought I would be.

I went to my sister's home near the city where I was to stay for the next week. That afternoon I bought her a mac laptop so that we are now able to keep in contact via Skype. Her Mac Mini did not have a microphone or camera. The laptop is slightly more powerful but just a little more than half the price of mine which was purchased in May 2007.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Worshipping in Dunedin

Today I worshipped at the church I think will be my new parish - St John's Roslyn.
The vicar for the next few weeks (he is to become Bishop of Dunedin) is Kelvin Wright.
He usually puts his sermon on the web so I will link if it appears. I am always nervous in repeating a sermon, I did not take notes.
However in preaching on the Gospel Luke 4: 14-21 he pointed out that Jesus in reading from Isaiah 61, Jesus stopped before the words "and the day of vengeance of our God".
Kelvin claimed it was fear that caused the people to then try to kill Jesus.
He went on to claim it was fear of homosexuality that was causing divisions in the worldwide Anglican church and pointed out that while there were 5 verses in the Bible which directly prohibit homosexuality, there were 26(?may have been 25 or 27 - I did not write it down) verses prohibiting usury. Yet he and probably every adult present was involved in usury (lending money for interest) and it had been the cause of the Global Financial Crisis. I felt like yelling out "and the reason for the Diocese of Sydney losing millions" Of course I did not.
Kelvin stressed the words of Jesus to Nicodemus - John 3:17
" For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world should be saved through him"
I felt Kelvin's words were a sign to me that I have done the right thing in moving from Sydney to Dunedin.

I have previously posted that Kelvin has said he is not willing at the moment to ordain another same-sex partnered man as a priest in Dunedin (there is already one) but it is not because of his condemnation of homosexuality but his unwillingness to upset weaker brethren.
Have to rush to inspect houses now so will post more of an update on my move later.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Moving Update

Am having trouble keeping up with reading blogs let alone writing anything. Actually I seem to be awake half the night but am trying to resist actually getting out of bed, a few chapters of a book sometimes help. The doctor gave me some tablets but they were only enough for 12 days so have been taking them half strength. They do some good as before I started I was awake before midnight, now it is nearer 3am.

My sister always complains that I inherited my Mother's thick hair while she got Dad's stringy hair but she does not understand that I also inherited Mum's ability to worry about everything.

Really I am so lucky, all my worries have been needless but try telling my body that.
The house and land sold 4 weeks after going on the market for the top price I expected. The only problem is the purchasers wanted to be in by 14 Jan, a bit quicker than usual and, of course, across the holiday season.

I had 2 garage sales and both were lovely fine days after a week of rain. I do not have an actual garage, just a sort of carport so rain would have been disaster. They were moderately successful.

I was not able to sell my dining and lounge chairs but they were collected by Vinnies last Wednesday. I now only have a lounge, a high kitchen stool and a computer chair on which to sit. Some other chairs went in the garage sale.

I was worried about selling the car, needing it until I move out on Wednesday. Put an advert in the local paper last Wednesday and was inundated with calls so perhaps I offered it too cheaply but the guy who has lived across the road from me for 28 years offered to buy it (I just happened to mention I was selling it when he stopped to chat) and has paid me cash while allowing me to keep it until Wednesday.

The 33 year old refrigerator, 20 year old washing machine, 15 year old freezer and pre war filing cabinet are being picked up free on Tuesday. The same day all my goods are being packed and taken for shipping. Unfortunately moving overseas does not allow one to throw some odds and ends in a box in the car to take to a new house.

As I will not see the goods until I have purchased a new house (it could be 3 months) I have packed some suitcases with bed linen, blanket, towels and clothes to be sent by air as unaccompanied luggage (a bit expensive). I should be packing the bag I will be taking now so as to see what has to either be put in the shipping container or the unaccompanied bags.

A large skip is to be delivered tomorrow to take all the remaining junk (the detritus of my life).

My sister has spent 2 days here organising me (she has done that all her life) and will be back on Tuesday. We have booked into a motel for Tuesday and Wednesday nights then will hand over the keys and I will stay a week with her before the flight. I was going to stay in a motel near her but that little unpleasant scam last month convinced me to accept her offer to save some money and stay at her home. There is not a lot of room there.

My final worry is about accommodation in Dunedin. I have booked into a motel for 10 nights but will need to find something cheaper, at least partly furnished until I am able to buy a house. I have rented a car for 10 days but will have to buy one for after that.

At least the weather is reinforcing my decision to move. We have had a lot of rain which is good to prevent bushfires but the weeds have run amok. Am a bit ashamed of the condition I am leaving the garden.

Now the rain has gone, the temperatures are in the mid 30'sC and the humidity is horrendous. It is very unlikely we will have bushfires now as we would need the dry north westers to blow for a week or more and that has always been unlikely after January.
While the temperatures up here in the mountains, (while higher and colder in winter, we do not get the seabreezes in summer) are forecast to be around 30' C until Thursday when it will cool down to 21'C, in Dunedin it is forecast to range from 14'C up to 20'C next week.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Happy New Year

From Sydney, Australia.

The New Year is nearly 9 hours old here now.
As usual I was home alone, watched the 9pm children's fireworks on TV then went to bed and set the alarm to watch the Midnight Fireworks.
Went to the city yesterday and met my sister to see "Bright Star" then have lunch. The movie theatre is near the Opera House and at midday people were already queueing for vantage points by the harbour. Not for me, I am afraid.