Saturday, February 05, 2011

Hot, hostile & frustrated

It's hot, very hot. I was meant to be going to Newcastle today for a new state meeting, but we deferred it to next week because of the heatwave.  Just too hot for people to travel in comfort.

P1060885 We have to move house in the next few weeks and are looking for a new rental place.

We stumbled across our present place by accident. It is a big, rambling Federation style building. It feels like a New England house, a station homestead.

We knew when we moved in that it would only be for a short period, eighteen months. The owners had bought it to redevelop, and only wanted to rent while they worked out their plans and had them approved.

It was fascinating watching the Sydney siders walking round the place when we were renting. We looked and said, let's get it. They looked and said it's not modern enough, paint is peeling, there are not enough mod-cons.

P1060892 The house sits on a hill with 280 degree views over sea and suburbs. It's height means that it gets good ventilation. The garden is large and great for entertainment.

We knew when we moved in that the house would spoil us. For the life of me, I still cannot understand the negative reactions that so many had to the house in the first place.

Now as we drive from rental property to rental property - we must have looked at forty houses so far - I see over-priced house after over-priced house. There is, I guess, a Sydney life style thing at work. Suburb is very important. Then, too, so are public spaces and things like multiple bathrooms.

By contrast, we want three reasonable size bedrooms, a decent kitchen, space for a home office, plus space for books and papers. That's all.

I have formed the jaundiced opinion that Sydney people, at least Eastern Suburbs Sydney people, don't read, nor do they entertain much at home.

I accept that  I am not typical. I grew up in an academic household in a university city. Partially as a consequence, I am now an obsessive writer who loves his books and papers around him. The very smell of a book, the feel, is quite sensuous.

This slimmed down metro life style is really not for me. If I am on holidays, then a modern apartment is a good thing. If I have to live there, it is not.

Sorry for the gripe. But it is very hot, I am tired, and I am tired of looking for a new place to live. It also explains, in part, my present inefficiency in responding to emails and comments.

No doubt things will get better, but I am still pissed off.

I sometimes get asked why I don't go back to New England if I am so annoyed about Sydney. Well, part of the reason is family. Another significant part is that New England as, at best, a branch office economy simply does not offer the type of of opportunities that would enable me to utilise my skills. The jobs aren't there.


Le Loup said...

Not so cool here either at present! Rain promised for the weekend. Perhaps that will clear the air. Fingers crossed!

Mark said...

Hope you find a place soon Jim. I see there is a very strong cool change on the way, so relief soon.

Jim Belshaw said...

Hi both! The cool change came through an hour or so ago. Last night was deadful.

Greg said...

Hi Jim,

It was pretty ordinary in Newcastle on Saturday - 41 degrees throughout most of the city and it was still
32 degrees at 2am Sunday morning.

Good luck with your house hunting. We are doing a few renovations - new floor coverings and a new bathroom. That is bad enough. We just accumulate so many possessions. Even trying just to clear out one room is a major project!

Jim Belshaw said...

Thanks, Greg. Moving is a real pain! The heat didn't help.