Guest morgie@51

3 Weeks In (Long Post)

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    Guest morgie@51

    Been here 3 weeks now and have finally got round to doing my first post having arrived on Sunday 13th April. Apologies for the length, I rarely post but once I get going I struggle to stop!

     

    For those that don’t know I have come on my own for 5 weeks with Ali and the children following on behind 5 weeks later. Ali and the kids came to the airport with me with Ali’s parents so we could fit all of us and my luggage in 2 cars – couldn’t get 5 of us and my stuff in a Punto! I have to say I found the saying goodbye both to family in the run up to the big day and at the airport harder than I expected. I was really impressed with how the children coped. Hardly a tear, if any between them – anyone would think they were glad to see the back of me!

     

    I flew with Singapore who were great. The food was good and as I really struggle to sleep at all on planes I spent the whole time watching films and listening to music. I had 17 hours in Singapore so had booked a room at the transit hotel for 12 hours which was a godsend. Filled in the rest of the time wandering round the airport, having a nice relaxing meal and a couple of beers – ah the joys of peaceful travel on your own!

     

    I was met at the airport by Dennis and Rene from the Meet and Greet service. They were really helpful and took me straight to our On Arrival Accommodation. They gave me loads of info, then took me shopping for some basics. I would recommend the Meet and Greet service to anyone. Being a fairly independent soul my initial reaction was ’I’ll be ok, can manage on my own thanks very much’. Ali talked me into it and I have to say it was well worthwhile.

     

    On Arrival Accommodation. This seems to have had a fairly bad press on the forums over the last few months. All I can say is that I am really pleased with what we have been allocated. We have been given a 3 bed detached house in Novar Gardens. Novar Gardens is a pleasant enough area in general and is fairly close to the airport and transport into the city. I even managed the first few days without a car. The area is fine and I’ve not had any problems so far. Yes the house is basic and no it’s not what we would choose for a permanent home. However, it has enough space for us to all fit in when the 5 of us are all here. It has enough of the basics to be going on with and it is cheap in comparison to open market rentals. With arriving on a Sunday the rental started from the following Saturday so we effectively get 13 weeks here if we need them and I’m thinking that we will probably use most of the 13 weeks if only to save a bit of cash till I’m earning again.

     

    I’ve seen a few queries recently about OAA so will pass on a few bits of info I got off the guy who came to sign the rental agreement. Houses like the one we have are saved for people with large families – I think that means at least 3 children – as they have 4 singles, a double and a cot. Also ours had just had the kitchen redone – new cupboards, work tops and a new fridge freezer. He said that they are trying to improve the stock gradually but that when they started they were given some really ‘shady’ properties by the housing association. Apparently they are getting better ones now and what they have is improving all of the time. Based on our experience so far I would recommend OAA but it does sound like it’s a bit of a luck of the draw scenario both in terms of getting OAA and what you get allocated.

     

    Since arriving I have been sorting out all the practical things that need to be done on first arriving. For those yet to come out my list is as follows: activating bank accounts and getting cash cards and internet banking sorted, joining a library for free internet access to start off with, getting a new driving licence, tax file no., signing up for medicare, sorting ambulance cover, mobile sim card, telephone and internet access, house insurance, buying a car, car insurance, forms to apply for child benefit when the kids arrive, buying a tv for the kids when they arrive, buying essentials like sheets etc, visiting recruitment agents. Now I’ve typed it out it doesn’t seem that long but it has taken the best part of 2 weeks to get through it all.

     

    The last week has been spent chasing agencies re job adverts and starting to drive round areas to narrow down the list of potential suburbs to rent and eventually buy in. Been around some of the south and the north east so far. Did 150 miles the first day and am I glad it was just me and not the 5 of us in a car all day. Have to say I ruled out far more areas than I ruled in but hey that’ll make the decision easier at the end of the day.

     

    So what have I made of Adelaide so far? I like the city centre – beats Liverpool where I worked for the last 4 years hands down. Been to Glenelg and do like it but my first reaction on getting to the jetty at the front was ‘Hmm, smells just like Rhyl’ – the similarity did end there! As yet I don’t feel as if I have got any feel for what living here will be like, but then again I’m here on my own and not with other half and 3 kids and not working yet so couldn’t possibly have a view on that yet. Virtually everyone I’ve met has been friendly and helpful. Life does seem more relaxed here than the UK although I do suspect that I will find some aspects of this irritating at times when I want something sorting out. I realise that to a certain extent I will have to learn to live with it after all I need to adapt to Australia not the other way around.

     

     

     

    Some things have struck me so far (no complaints or whinges just observations):

    ·
    50 cent coin – don’t recall seeing such an enormous coin anywhere before, certainly know when you have a few in your pocket. The 20 cent isn’t far behind either.

    ·
    2 dollar coin is smaller than the 1 dollar – caught me out a couple of times as I’d expect it to be the other way round

    ·
    Not having any 1 or 2 cent coins. The rounding up or down when you pay cash still gets me. I asked how much a battery charger was in one shop, it’s $24.99 sir he said so I gave him $25 dollars. Really confused me when I only got a receipt in return and no change! Still I’m sure i’ll get used to it.

    ·
    Crocks – as far as I can see they’re designed for hot weather to keep feet cool. I’ve come to a hot country so see them around a fair bit. But I didn’t expect to see a shop selling lambswool lined crocks!

    ·
    Driving – ok this is a bit of a complaint – such large, wide roads and what feels like such low speed limits. I was really depressed at having to buy an automatic to start off with (don’t do the model we wanted in manual). My original and current view is automatics are boring, tedious, inefficient and remove all the enjoyment from driving. Having had one now for all of a week and a half I’m dead right but on spacious roads with speed limits in most areas of no more than 60kms (that’s 37.5 mph) my licence wouldn’t last long in something more ‘entertaining’. That’s my Jeremy Clarkson moment over with.

    Finally do I regret coming and would I change how we’ve gone about it?

     

    On the regret side it’s too early to say but so far no. I can see great potential for us as a family to get what we want eventually. Obviously some of the biggest determining factors will be work for me, the kids settling into good schools and making friends, Ali building up friendships like she had in Winsford and ,for us all, finding a church like we left behind . The real acid test will be whether in 2 years time the balance in our lives is how we want it to be. One thing’s for certain we’ll give it a good go, see where we end up and enjoy the experience along the way.

     

    On the how we’ve gone about it question. I think me coming on my own was the right thing. Don’t know if Ali will say the same after the flight. The one thing I would change is the 5 weeks apart bit. 3 would have been better and this weekend would have been the perfect time for the rest of the family to come out. The plus side is that hopefully from missing each other as much as we have done we’ll all appreciate each other more from now. That’s one for me to remember when I get ratty with the kids.

     

    Anyway I have rambled enough - I'm sure Ali will post an update once she's arrived and settled and give a better insight into daily life.

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    Guest Libby1971

    Brilliant post!

     

    Thoughtful, well balanced, heartfelt, truly great reading.

     

    My heart goes out to you all, wherever you are. Being apart for so long cannot be much fun at all. Hope you are reunited soon.

     

    Libby

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    Guest louiesmum

    Hi Morgan

     

    Thanks for the great post, always good to hear people's first impressions,

    seems like you are getting things sorted. I hope the next few weeks fly & you are meeting the rest of your family at the airport before you know it. Thanks again for the informative post.

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    Guest jill wright

    Thanks Morgan what a really great post your wife must be proud of you getting so many things sorted by yourself. Some very useful information here as well espeicially the OAA as we've also three kids so if end up in one of the bigger houses may drop lucky, anyway our minds made up on that one now .

     

    Thanks for the insight into your new life

     

    Jill

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    Guest mOZzy

    hi morgan,

     

    thanks for that great post!!

    i've written your list down alreayd ;)

    and i like the tiny details you mention like the 1$/2$ being the 'wrong' sizes :cute:

     

     

    5 weeks are over soon and i am sure you'll be busy anyways!!!

    poor ali though with 3 kids all alone :biglaugh::goofy:

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    Guest Django
    automatics are boring, tedious, inefficient and remove all the enjoyment from driving.

     

    Never a truer word spoken.:notworthy:

     

    Good to see things are falling into place. Just need things to go right on the job front.

     

    Pete

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    Hey,

     

    Great post....some great observations that im sure catch a few people out!!

     

    hope all continues to go well for you!

     

    Dan and Steph

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    Guest caoimhe

    What a lovely post Morgan. Thank you

     

    I went to Adelaide on my own a few years ago for my aunts 50th birthday (we couldn't afford for all 6 of us to go). I had an amazing time but 4 weeks without Stephen and the kids was so hard so I hope the time goes really quickly for you and you will all be starting your new life together before you know it

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    my oh my well done morgan you should be proud of yourself, for all you have got through so far and for your honest post.

    you and your gang will be back together soon enough i bet.

    good look to ali with the flight/kids etc keep us all up to date if you can;)

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    Guest macu68

    Great and honest read Morgan. A long time in a new place without your family to bounce ideas off. I went alone for almost 4 weeks for a reccie to see if we could consider it as part of a family move. I was not disappointed when I got to Adelaide but it wasn't what I expected it to be, but we are all raring and keen to get over to Adelaide. Just the paperwork to get through....... yawn.

     

    Make sure you are extra nice to Ali when she gets there, she is a remarkable woman to consider the flight alone with 3 children.

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    Guest Lulujim

    Hi Morgan,

     

    Great post - good tips and very positive. I'm sure you're missing the kids and Ali lots, but you have put the kids first and saved them from all the shlepping around, so when they arrive you'll have done the hard work, and they'll have a positive first few weeks. Very admirable... and like said above, Ali is a star to fly alone with the kids!!

     

    Keep us updated on your progress, looking forward to the next installment already!

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    Guest ali@51

    Hi All

    Just read through Morgans post again. He did let me have a read first but I don't think I took it all in. I am relly proud of him it will make it far easyer when we arrive and it can't be easy on your own in a new country with no one to bounce Ideas of and talk to when you are down. He is however meeting Sarah from guzzler and sas tomorow for a chat, In a purley profesional capasity :cute:. Sarah's new job sounds to be going well as he was much brighter once he had spoken to her so she must be good.

    The one thing I would disagree with in his post is the no tears! Meg and Joe howlled all the way home in the car!:arghh:

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    ali and morgan and little uns you sound like a lovley family and dont worry, you will all be back together soon.

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    Hi Morgan,

     

    Great post and glad things are going well. Nice to chat with you the other day while i was meant to be working:D. Good luck with the job hunt im sure something will turn up soon and i bet your looking forward to the boss coming out to join you. Hope to chat again soon and thanks for the great post

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    Guest Guest75

    Welcome to Adelaide Morgan.

     

    Good luck on the job front:)

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    Guest salisbury massive

    for us all, finding a church like we left behind .

     

    Well, you are in the right place, you can spend the rest of the year going to a different church on sunday until you find one you like. We do after all live in the "City of Churches"

     

    well done on your first few weeks, its always great for us old timers to see Adelaide through fresh eyes.

     

    Jo

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    Hi Morgan

     

    Loved your post, very balanced view and positive too which is always nice. I hope you continue to enjoy life here and more importantly revel in your family being reunited soon.

     

    thanks

    Dette

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    Guest Mick

    Great post and amasing insight into the first weeks of your new life. Doing the same myself ie going solo for a few months to test the water before my wife and daughter come out in new year. Hope to be out in August, just sorting trade skills stuff prior to booking flight.

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    Great Post!

     

    I had to laugh about the Crocs bit. I haven't seen any woolly lined ones but I personally think they are the ugliest shoes I have ever seen. Sorry if you own a pair!! lol

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    Excellent and well written post.

     

    Totally did the same thing about waiting for my penny change for ages too!!

     

    Think you coming out on your own and doing all those necessary things was a good idea - wished we thought of that - although feel for your wife on the flight - but everything will be sorted for when they arrive.

     

    Hope the time flies and your family will soon be here.

     

    sarahx

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    Guest Guzzler&Sas

    well done Morgan, good post and well done to Ali. By now you will all be togehter again and the 5 weeks will have become a distant memory.

     

    Catch up again soon.

     

    Take care

    Sas

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