WARNING: This has the potential to be a long post! I mean, I've been offline for 4 whole days!!!!
The first thing I want to say is that I quite like our new little town of about 360 people. It definitely has that small-town community feel (although I've heard the gossip is amazing but have yet to experience that). I like the feel of the place and the people I've spoken to so far have been so lovely!
The Big Fella arrived with the truck on Monday night. He had a guy from work driving it for him who used to work as a removalist. They looked around at everything that had to go in the truck and got really worried. The Big Fella has a lot of mechanical equipment!
We did some more packing, slept and woke early feeling pretty good. Things kinda went downhill from there.
The few boxes I had left to pack took me until after lunch.
The guys had serious issues getting everything into the truck and, despite his mate's experience and skill, not everything fit and it took until after 4pm to finish packing it.
The Little Big Fella was excited about it all and wanted to help and see what was happening. Therefore, he got in the way a lot. And he talked like there was no tomorrow! Especially calling out to "Dad" to "watch this" and so on. He was really good but it was pretty tricky having him around.
The cleaning took so long! Again, I have to give a big shout out to my sister who really rescued me. She pretty much cleaned all the walls in the house while I was packing and she did an awesome job. She had to go get her boys at 4, by which time I was pretty much ready to start the floors.
Except the Big Fella needed help moving stuff out of downstairs into the shed so that Poppy could collect and store it for us for a few weeks.
By this time the Little Big Fella was tired and hungry and wanted to go to Poppy's and have lots of hugs. I was tired and pretty much beyond it and my brain was completely frazzled. The Big Fella was exhausted and sore but holding up pretty well.
We finally locked the doors at about 6pm.
We drove our two cars to my grandparents' place and I started bringing in things for our overnight stay. At this point I remembered thinking as I locked the house, "I should double-check the cupboards. No, I already did that earlier today." You guessed it, I'd left my clothes for the next few days in the closet. I couldn't even have a shower because I had nothing to change into.
After a moment of being completely incapacitated, I decided to have dinner, shower the Little Big Fella and get him off to sleep, then go and collect the keys from the landlord, get my bag, return the keys then come back. Poppy decided that he and the Big Fella should do that though so we all ate dinner (which tasted amazing!!! after such a long day) first then went off to do what needed doing.
After a shocking night's sleep, we woke at 3:30am and prepared to set off. Again, the Little Big Fella was brilliant at waking up so early and was excited to be travelling in the new car with Daddy, while Mummy followed in the ute.
The drive was pretty good and watching the sun come up through the foggy patches was beautiful. I also saw two falling stars, which I've not seen in the whole 6 years that I've lived in Queensland!
Unfortunately I was SO tired and really struggled for a while with driving safely. I realised at two points that I'd actually nodded off briefly, having micro-sleeps. Completely freaked out and called the Big Fella's mobile. Talking to him helped me wake up then I turned on some Ugly Kid Joe and wound down the window (it was cold outside) and ate some Smarties and Jelly Beans. At our next stop the Big Fella bought me an energy drink (I never drink them) and I didn't have any troubles for the rest of the day.
|Driving behind the Big Fella on the highway coming close to our new town.|
But as we came in to town and I looked around (while trying to drive and get a sense of direction in the town) and felt calmed.
Then we got to the house and I knew! I knew it would be months of cleaning inside and I nearly cried. The grass was overgrown, the yard was fairly bare, the edges had been burned with chemicals and there was dead grass all over the paths.
The Big Fella took me upstairs and it was better and worse than I expected.
The actual house, its layout and furnishings were better than I expected. The cleanliness factor was worse.
The windows (oh God! More windows!) were milky with dirt and dust and the tracks were definitely not clean.
There were dead bugs and gecko droppings everywhere.
The floor needed a vacuum.
The walls weren't clean.
After looking around and assessing the "damage" I started prioritising in my head and realised that it wouldn't be clean this week, or possibly even this month, but I would work on each room bit by bit and get it to the point where I could look around and not think, "Oh, I need to do that too!".
The guys unloaded everything from the truck to under the house (it's enclosed and has a concrete floor, which I quickly swept out first - there was dried grass everywhere). Then they had a drink and took the truck back to the next major town.
The Little Big Fella and I went for a little walk to the end of the street (about 200 metres maybe) to the little park. There were kids everywhere and several parents camped out on rugs and camping chairs. I met several of them and had a good chat and the Little Big Fella ran around happily.
While the Big Fella was gone I thought several times that I should check the hot water. After thinking it the third time I finally stopped and checked.
Sure enough, it was cold.
No worries! I'll just turn it on! Ha! There was no switch on the unit itself and I couldn't find where the power came from. I was sore and tired and trying to keep the Little Big Fella happy and nearly in tears. What could I do???
Mum to the rescue!!! I called her and had a chat and she suggested checking the power box. Easy as flicking the switch and the hot water was on! Thanks Mum! We had a good little chat after that too.
Over the last few days we've started unpacking, got the kitchen in useable order, cleared the lounge/dining area so that we can sit and relax when we're not unpacking, and set up the drawers and shelves around the place so that we have somewhere to unpack to. We've also transferred the new car into our names, been shopping at the supermarket in the next town, and removed everything from the Big Fella's room at the quarters where he's been living for the past 6 months.
The Big Fella is now at his first work shift since our arrival. The Little Big Fella kind of freaked out when he left. I don't think he realised that Daddy wasn't going away for weeks, but would be back in the morning. He'll get the hang of it soon enough.
There's a big festival on this weekend, including a rodeo, markets and free kids rides. We're hoping to head on over to the next town to enjoy it, although I think the Big Fella might be working and we have to drive to one of the mines to drop off a trailer we borrowed so that we didn't leave so much behind.
I'm looking forward to becoming part of the community here and finding ways to contribute. I can just imagine being one of those cake-baking small-town women. Kind of like a Stepford Wife :-D
Oh! And there's a paddock across the road with a mare and foal! The Little Big Fella wants to go over there all the time to talk to them and pat them. Thankfully they're quite friendly and he's learning how to treat them properly.
|The Little Big Fella eating and trying to say hi to the foal.|