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SSar's Beast


So, on January 7th, I got a call from my landlords which disabused me of my notion that our lease ended at the end of February, and reminded me that it actually ended at the end of January. Since I am always primed to go into flat-hunting mode (ask people, I am a freak of nature who loves looking for potential homes), I went into flat-hunting mode.

Twelve days later, I have signed the lease on our new flat.

There was effort involved - I obsessively stalked TradeMe, the New Zealand version of eBay, which includes rental property listings - I emailed agents, requesting tenancy application forms to fill out in advance - I canvassed referees, ensuring that for myself I could summon if needed a total of FOUR people willing to say I was employed, or employable, and a stable tenant - but there was also luck, and the fact that Joel was willing to pay more than we currently budget for.

(I can't really win if I bow to outside opinion. I have my current home, which I love very much, and which other people have dismissed hurtfully as "sterile", or "such a student flat", or "more grotty than anything we lived in at your age". And then there's the idea of living in a genuinely nice house, and I fear scorn from people who think I should be saving my money. It's still a rental, not a future investment. But I can win if my spirits lift at the idea of a truly, newly, beautiful home. And if Joel doesn't get strep throat this winter!!)

So I went obsessively flat-hunting, and trotted my lovely Joel along to all places with good potential. We saw one complete hole, two very uninspiring places, two uninspiring places, and four possibles. The flat we got was the nicest of the bunch (though I could have lived quite happily on North Terrace).

Oh yeah, I should probably delete the other flats I could *still* see off my TradeMe watchlist. Probably.

Our new home is up a steep street, very green and bushy, just off a major bus route. About 25 minutes' walk gets the walker to Vic Uni; or, about 30 minutes' walk, and you're in town. I'm used to one minute and 14 minutes, respectively. It is the lower floor of a two-storey 1911 villa. It has three bedrooms, a very large living room, a decent if narrow kitchen, and a nice neat bathroom with the laundry equipment tucked tidily into a cupboard. My landlady showed me how the washing machine and dryer worked. I oohed and aahed. I suspect it will be the dishwasher that really revolutionizes my lifestyle.

Anyway, we were informed on Monday evening that we were the successful applicants for our new home. Since then, I have informed the power company, the phone company, and the internet company of our move. I have booked a moving truck and crew. I have (today) inspected the new home with one of my landlords, arranged the bond payment to our new landlords, finalized the rent payment to our old landlords, and arranged the rent payment to our new landlords going forward. I have taken a meter reading from our new home. I have bought additional cleaning supplies. I have begun to pack. I have sourced boxes.

Joel has gone to Sydney for his company's AGM. It's all work with a tiny bit of play; I don't know which of us faces a greater challenge. Me, at home, organizing the super-speedy move; or Joel, in Sydney, launched into a conference after a truly exhausting week of flat-hunting AND making sure things would run smoothly in his regular office while he was gone.

And when we're out of this place, it will be a job to clean it up, while I am also working two jobs. Um... I may not be able to provide a home-cooked meal for that week. I feel daunted.

I have some lovely friends who have agreed to help me pack tomorrow night. I will cook them dinner. I have some ordinary dishes planned but I will be trying to use up random stuff in the freezer/cupboard, so... good luck guests. :P Tonight the real goal is to look around my room and think "What shall I do with the nicknacks? What shall I do with the things that only I can oversee?" – and get the miniature crap sorted, all the better to delegate tomorrow. But I am very tempted just to drink wine and make soup (and chocolate mousse for tomorrow's helpers) and relax with My Little Pony or any other distraction.

Notes to self: call the power company tomorrow. Also, kudos for sorting out that children's book and setting off your graduation certificate inquiry. Also, don't talk to anystranger else about your VUW job application until you've actually DONE it.