Three Out of Four

I have been in Melbourne for three weeks and so far things are going well. At first I felt exhausted, jet-lagged and slightly behind things in general. However, all that was required of me for the first four days was to follow the family wedding party around, something that was not only easy, but great fun as well. I soon relaxed into the happy atmosphere.

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Three weeks on, all the faraway relatives have departed and the local ones are back at work. I am settling into my new space, spending most of my days at my computer. I should be writing, but the sheer joy of being able to sit and browse the blogs I haven’t had time to read for so long, catch up with nonsense on Facebook and send out e-mails to friends about how things are going here, has pushed my writing into the background once more.

I know it’s not writer’s block; more like writer’s procrastination, and you’ve probably realised by now that I’m really good at that. I’ll get back to the writing soon, maybe tomorrow, maybe the next day…

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Melbourne’s weather takes some getting used to. It’s a lot colder here than it was in Durban, where our winter temperatures seldom (if ever) dropped below 17°C. Here, things are very different. I had been warned that it would be cold, so I had crammed the second of my two suitcases full of thermal underwear. That was a great idea – until I tried to fit into the bigger suitcase every other piece of clothing that hadn’t gone into my Move Cube (my tiny container within a container).

Re-pack… and re-pack… and re-pack… So I arrived in Melbourne with a depleted supply of thermal underwear as well as a depleted supply of just about everything else, apart from enthusiasm.

Three nights ago was the coldest night in eighteen years, and the following morning the ground was covered with frost – in some places so thick that it almost looked like snow. Of course, that was the morning that we all had to get up early and drive for almost an hour to the far side of Melbourne to collect my beloved kitties from the quarantine facility where they have spent the last ten days.

Fortunately the cat area there was warm and snug, and my two cats had been well-fed and looked great. Their coats were thick and glossy, and their big eyes and purrs when they realised that the intruder in their kennel was me, was heart-warming to experience. They resigned themselves to another stint in their travelling boxes without too much protestation, and another hour’s drive brought them to their new home – our new home – in my sister and brother-in-law’s house.

Our original plan had been for the cats to have a slow transition – I would keep them inside my bedroom for a few days until they felt settled enough to venture into the rest of the house. A week or so later we planned to take them out into the garden for short visits, to get them used to what it all smells like out there, so that they might start to learn where their new home is in this new neighbourhood, new country, new world.

That was the plan, anyway. The practicalities dictated otherwise. To prevent further disruption in their lives, we decided to let them learn from the start the correct locations of both their food and their litter tray. Of course this threw the bedroom isolation idea out the window, so to speak.

Slinking low and with much hesitation, the cats ventured beyond the confines of the bedroom and explored at length. Curious by nature, they didn’t seem to be intimidated by any of their surroundings; just cautious. They both sniffed every inch of the inside of the house before settling down to eat, then wash, and later to use their toilet. And then sleep.

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Galadriel seems to have fallen completely in love with the two extra people in her life, and Valentine is endlessly fascinated by the dishwasher – we didn’t have one in Durban, so the gurgling of water and funny beeps at the end are new to him.

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So far they haven’t ventured outside, but with the current weather, they both seem happy to stay indoors – for the moment.

Looks like we’re all home and happy. The only thing left to arrive now is my Move Cube, which we expect in little over a month. One human and two cats all present and correct; one Move Cube to follow.

Three out of four is a good start!

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13 thoughts on “Three Out of Four

  1. I’m asking myself if I could pack for a month! So is this move cube one of those metal storage containers that can be put on a train or a boat? We’re starting to see some of them around here. I assume it IS coming by boat? Do they deliver it to your house? At any rate, so glad you and Galadrial and Valentine are settling in and are enjoying yourselves. Stay warm! Hugs!

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    • Thank you for your comment. Yes, all three of us are settling in well.

      A Move Cube is a wooden box that is 2.26 metres long by 1.46 metres wide by 1.87 metres high, and the shipping company (Seven Seas Worldwide) can fit four of them into one of those big 6-metre metal shipping containers that you have seen. Or you might have seen the longer ones – I think they are 12 metres long.

      The Cube is not big enough to take all your household goods, but you can take the things that you are most sentimental about, and any odd-shaped furniture that you are able to pack inside it. Yes, it travels by ship along with a few hundred others. It takes between two and three months from the time it is loaded till it reaches here, and once it has been inspected by the Australian customs department, Seven Seas will deliver it to the house on the back of a big truck, and we will have to unpack the contents. The Cube itself remains the property of the shipping company, so at least we don’t have to store that.

      If you copy and paste the link below, you can take a look at one of the other blogs I write for – Scribbling Scribes – and you will see the post that I wrote about the packing of my Move Cube, along with a few photos:

      https://scribblingscribes.wordpress.com/2015/06/18/move-cube-on-its-way/

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  2. As I am still waiting for you to “send out e-mails to friends” (nothing in my inbox yet), am I to presume that the long-unvisited blogs are taking up more time than they should?

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    • Sorry, Gareth – I am managing to use up a large part of my day reading blogs written by other people, instead of writing the things I should be writing. Will try to catch up soon…

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    • Someone told me yesterday that this is Melbourne’s coldest winter in thirty years. I’m quite prepared to believe that. I’m hoping that next year will be a milder winter. Either that, or I will be more used to it by then…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you, it pleases me to know it’s this winter and not my old bones making me cold. I probably complained like hell thirty years ago, too.
        It’s going to end soon, isn’t it? It has to, it will or I’ll just have to stay in bed.

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