Our Australian adventure is nearly finished. I say nearly as some of us are still in Oz, one has left already and one will stay for a bit longer.
We have handed in the key of our house. It was a gruelling couple of weeks with a fair bit of stress. I still wake up in the middle of the night with feelings that I have to sell things I actually don’t have anymore or bring items to people who don’t exist.
It was amazing to see that after selling most of our things we still manage to ship over 8 cubic meter. And that is without the ‘famous’ sofa that I would have liked to take to our house in France. The problem was that the sofa is too big to get into the house. The width of the window is exactly the same size as the height of the sofa.
I did ask my local Limoux handyman for advice but his reply was to assess the situation ‘en place’. Not really the best suggestion. So off it went, our gorgeous sofa to a very grateful lady for a pittance!
Being a tenant in Australia
During the last 5 years we were renters. We sold our family home and found an apparent good house to rent in St Lucia. Very handy for our off spring who went to University and high school. The house turned out to be a bit of a night mare with many structural problems.
Obviously not designed by an architect but more by a ‘wannabe’ builder. He must have saved a lot of money by skipping stages in the building process. After all how can waterproofing and sloping areas for drainage purposes be important. The end of the story is that I am glad that some else owns this house. If it was a car, it would be called a lemon!
We did get to meet our landlady, the one who let us live in a house with damp problems, a whole summer without outdoor areas and an on the verge of collapse retaining wall at the back of the house. She came to assess the condition while we were still cleaning.
Now apparently tenants are the lower citizens of society and therefore the rather frumpy and grumpy grey haired owner chose to walk past us without saying a word. After all why would you interact with the people who paid your mortgage for the last 5 years? I decided that she deserves the house she owns…..
The final jobs before the new adventure begins
So the last weeks were spent on preparing a large garage sale, packing the stuff we wanted to take and cleaning to get our rather large bond back. The garage sale was a success, the removalists were pleasant and effective and the cleaning was gruelling.
In Australia it is common to have to leave your house cleaner than you get it. You can’t hang pictures on the walls and if you do you have to fix the holes.The carpet, ours with damp stains and moth damage needs a professional cleaning service and so on.
You also can’t leave anything on the premises that was not there when you got the house initially. So I took away the washing line, the compost bin, the watering hose and the more than one pot plant that was on the entry report. My neighbour was very eager to take it all.
In the end we left it in a very good state and I could hand in the keys on the due date. In the meantime we have heard that we get all our bond back. We have to do one more task and that is emptying the bins. In fact we were not really supposed to leave the bins full. Rather odd as where are you suppose to leave rubbish and recycling when you are still living there. Again my neighbour comes to the rescue and will empty both bins when the next pick is.
So now we are officially homeless and ready for a new adventure. We were able to do a house sit for friends for the last couple of weeks. Keith, my husband who will stay a bit longer in Australia can rent a room at friends until his contract finishes. Our youngest moved in with her friend and family and is now a homestay student. And the oldest daughter lives since a couple of months in Melbourne.
Everything has changed and come to an end Down Under
Let the new adventure begin……
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