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.
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.
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.