Sydney update

It’s been a frustrating time for us here in Sydney so far. Here’s a summary of what’s happened this week:

** Mon: Arrived 8am, got to Tim’s ok. Went into town to see about getting “Tax File Numbers” (needed to work here). In the process, we went to a place in Redfern – which is pretty much the worst neighbourhood around (lots of drunks). Needless to say, our first day in Sydney we were not feeling to impressed with things. After that we went downtown for a wonder around, opened up a bank account, got cell phones (Sarah’s still not setup, but mine is). Went out for some good beers and free bar-b-q at a pub next to Tim’s place.

** Tue: Started looking for some temp (furnished) accomodation to live in whilst looking for a proper rental apartment. We found a place right away – pricy though ($600/wk) in an area of town called “Pyrmont” which is supposed to be like Yaletown in Vancouver. We also went out to another great pub called “The Bank” near Tim’s place – a huge beer garden, and fantastic Thai food.

** Wed: We went shopping to get Sarah some runners (she is having gym withdrawl, and there is a gym in our new place) and then moved into the furnished place in Pyrmont. What a weird place! It’s a converted warehouse, and looks a bit like a prison inside – corridors going to loads of aparments, with an open ceiling going all the way up to the roof. The apartment is tiny (studio), but will do fine for us since it is temp. We went to Woolworths (small store in UK – huge supermarket chain here in Aus) and bought some dinner stuff (our place has cooking facilities).

** Thus: Decided to go check out a couple of areas where we might want to live. We walked a LONG way across the Sydney Harbour bridge to North Sydney and explored the neighbourhoods of Kirribilli (where the Prime Minister lives!), and Neutral Bay. They both seemed really great, with lots of shops etc. and we were quite excited about living there (oh yes, and we saw about 50 of the same spider that was in Tim’s back garden in all the trees etc. I am thinking they are harmless – but they are damn big and scary looking – pic below). We also found a cheaper hotel, that offered both breakfast and dinner which would still come out to less than our current place. When we got back to our place, we were absolutely exhausted – we had walked about 5 miles over 6 hours in 36c (Sydney has been 36c every day since we got here). We decided that we liked North Sydney, and phoned the other hotel over there to make arrangements to stay next week. Now we were frustrated ’cause we were living downtown, but would have to go over to North Sydney for the next few days when looking for places to live.Then we met up with Tim and a couple of his friends, and they told us that we should NOT live in N. Sydney as it was too far away from all the action, and there was only 1 pub there (which was not good).

** Fri: So now we have decided to look for a place back in the area we are currently in (Pyrmont) – but next week will be living in North Sydney at the cheaper hotel – we can’t win! Hopefully we will find a place quite quickly (there are several to rent here). We have a bunch of numbers to call today.

Oh yes, and the Canadian government finally got around to setting a date for my oath to become Canadian – Feb 25th – which is a lot sooner than I had hoped, so I will be flying back to Vancouver in 10 days for a week or so. Hopefully we will have found a place to live before then….

It’s been quite difficult so far – mainly due to it being so warm that it makes it hard to hike around looking for stuff, and we don’t know where to go for anything. Plus everything here is damn expensive (we haven’t seen anywhere that is less than $2 for a coffee, or $10 for dinner). We have found a web cafe around the corner from our place that is only $6 for 2 hours – which is good. I’m sure it will get easier though – I remember the exact same feelings/problems when I first moved to Vancouver, and that all worked out so I am sure things will be ok. We are taking the weekend off and going to see some of the sites – the Aquarium and Manley (nice beach) so we are looking forward to that.

Below are some pics I’ve taken so far.

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Housing update – we found a place!
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