Punching Down Trees for a Living

Melbourne tree removalDon’t really know why, but I’m obsessed with foreign films. I don’t know, maybe I should’ve been born in India or something. Their movies are just plain amazing, particularly since they’re so overblown and nobody cares. It’s like a feast for the imagination!

The last one I watched was called Punch Guy!, and it was about a superhero who nobody liked who went around punching people. Nobody liked him because he caused so much property damage, but the grand message came when he realised that he should just let the police take care of bad guys and apply his talents elsewhere. Like, punching down trees. That was his job at the end of the movie.

Imagine if you called the Melbourne tree removal people and they just came along and punched your tree problem right down. In fact, you probably can’t imagine that, because it’s not real, but…how cool would it be?

I’m letting my imagination run away with me again, and besides, that might not even work. After all, it’s not like tree removal is all about brute force. If that was the case, they’d knock down trees with a wrecking ball and that would be that, job done and everything peachy. Stumps would be removed by planting some C4 and retreating to a safe distance, after which you’d blow it right out of the ground, or at least to tiny steaming bits. No, I’ve actually seen trees being removed, and it has a more finesse than just hacking at the thing with an axe. Imagine if it was an explosive axe. An axe that made explosions!

Yeah, nah. Same kind of problem. You’d have trees toppling into houses and splinters taking people’s eyes out. Nasty stuff.

Okay, you need tree pruning in Melbourne, but they do it with LASERS… The world could be so much cooler if we just let it happen.

-Deepak

Frankston, Termites and Casseroles

pest controlFirst new house experience, and I guess most things have been fine. I’ve already brought a casserole to the neighbours, who seem decent and were very grateful. Their recycling bin is always full of pizza boxes, so maybe  a hearty meal is what they needed in their diet. The overflowing beer bottles from the neighbours on the right made me worry a bit, but they don’t seem to be party animals. Two weeks in and we’ve had very quiet weekends, with nothing more than a bit of loud music.

There’s only been the bathroom incident, but even then, I guess people are more efficient about that stuff here in Frankston. Pest control people were here in what seemed like minutes. Not that I didn’t have a GO at removing all those cockroaches, but it was really a job for a set of comprehensive tools, you know? I’m not a huge DIY buff. I am but one man with an English Literature degree, so I’m pretty happy with my attempt.

And people said that Frankston was rough! The cockroach thing was rough, but otherwise, everyone seems very decent. There’s a bit of a seaside town vibe, and that permeates a lot of things. Everyone’s relaxed, sort of, and even when the pest control people came to get rid of my cockroaches, they seemed very chilled about it. Probably because it’s their job and they do it several times a day, but still…the level of chill was exceedingly high.

That’s just my life now. My life in Frankston, where termite inspections are given with a smile and casseroles are gratefully accepted. No termite troubles as of yet, and no return casserole, but I continue to live in hope that I’ll at least be invited over for pizza.

Meanwhile, I live in the opposite hope that I’ll never actually need the termite control services, because…I’m not equipped to deal with them either.

-Dale

Do They Have Conveyancing in Novosibirsk??

Cheltenham conveyancingI just start speaking in a Russian accent. Don’t ask me where it comes from…maybe I have ancestry.

Suppose it really freaks people out when I switch back to Australian, so there’s that. Oh, and when people ask me to say thing in Russian and I only know like three words. ‘Privet! Novosibirsk! Nasdrovia!’ And one of those is a place name, so maybe it doesn’t count. Or rather it counts as much as knowing ‘Siberia’, or ‘Moscow’.

What was I talking about? Oh yeah, it was relevant, because I met a Russian guy the other day. Not many of those in Cheltenham! Conveyancing solicitors have been on the brain for me recently, because we’re an advertising subsidiary and a few such companies wanted representation and advertisement. My job is complicated, I guess, but we found a company that does advertising and stuff, so I was just finalising everything with them. You know, making sure they actually know what conveyancing is and what it involves. That’s basically it, I guess.

One of them was Russian, but his English was perfect since he’d been here forever or whatever. I thought I’d try out a bit of Russian, so I used ‘privet’ and he seemed pretty happy. That’s ‘hello’, by the way. And this is where I picked up ‘Novosibirsk’, because that’s where he’s from, but it totally sounds like it could be a legitimate, complicated Russian word. So they learned all about conveyancing and soliciting, while I was taught a bit of Russian. One word of Russian, that also happens to be a place name. Alright, those on the conveyancing solicitor knowledge side probably came of better, but you can’t win them all. Guess I’ll just go look up how to say something about conveyancing and land sale acts or whatever…in Russian. You know, to lend some credibility to the accent.

-Clive

I Was Supposed to be Sandra!

Croydon kids play centreThe role of Sandra was mine. I’m serious, that little witch stole it right out from under my nose, and what am I left with? Mum #4. That’s not even Mum #1, which I clearly deserve!! The worst part is that Lana doesn’t even know what she did, stumbling into the audition late just as I was about to awarded the part and impressing everyone with her genuine air of mum-hood and slight stress. Oh, she took the wrong bus? Tough biscuits, dearie. That part was mine, and it was about to be my big break. I don’t think I can quite say the same about Mum #4, who by the way has only a single line: “Sandra, let it go!”

I WILL NOT.

Heaven knows I’ve tried to exert some influence over the whole thing. I even suggested a kids birthday party venue in Croydon, just down the road. It’s closer! We won’t have to travel! I, myself, will not have to travel at all, except for a three-minute walk! Nope, we’re off on a long-haul flight to Jandakot. It has all the filming locations we need in one big area, and we’ve already secured the use of the play centre. Oh, I see…Mum #4 just doesn’t carry the clout of a main cast member.

Then I tried to get my BF Jared off the sofa and into the production, because they were looking for guys to stand in the background of the dance sequence to represent the dads. I thought it’d be great for him to get away from those video games and see what I do for a living, you know? The director took one look at him and decided that he’d be great as Sandra’s hard-working husband. So now he has a recurring role and way more lines than me. What is EVEN happening here, for real. No joke. I’m about to explode.

Ugh, sigh. I guess we get to film in an indoor play centre like in Croydon, but…further. Brings back being a kid, when I used to go there with Rachel and she stole my teddy bear and buried it in the ball pit…gah, now I’m angry again!

-Christine

Doing something for me

cosmetic lip tattooI’m not going to lie, it’s been a really tough couple of weeks. Between being told my division at work is being let go, visiting mum and finding out her condition has gotten even worse, and a couple of extremely dead-end dates, it’s just been one huge downer. I know it’s probably my mid-life crisis setting in, but I’m just feeling so lost right now. I wish I had more direction, that I knew where I wanted to go with my life, but I feel so … stagnated. Like I’m just milling around without really making any progress. The whole thing is so demotivating, I just really need to do something crazy to try and get a bit of my spark back.

I think I might get lip injections. Melbourne is a really great place for getting cosmetic surgery like that – you know it’s all going to be totally safe and really high quality, so if you go somewhere half decent there’s basically no chance of a botched job. It’s all about where you go, and believe me, I’ve done my research. I just really want to do something for me. I feel like my life and my youth are getting away from me, and even though I know that’s not a bad thing, why shouldn’t I do something to feel good about myself?

At the same time, though, I’m not a hundred percent sure lip injections or fillers or whatever are going to be right for me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m dead set on some kind of cosmetic surgery, but I’m not sure if I should do my lips or something else. I’ve been looking a little bit at maybe doing some cosmetic tattooing here in Melbourne or something else along those lines. Clearly, I need to think about this a little more, but I’m getting there. It just takes a little time.

Out of my depth

drain replacement MelbourneSOS send help, I am officially way out of my depth here. I mean, I’m not gonna lie here, I’m probably out of my depth most of the time, but I can usually bluff my way through it. Not now, though. Not with this.

I know that sounds a little dramatic, so for any of you reading this with baited breath, I’m just going to put you out of your misery and let you know that I’m fine. All is well in Wendy’s world. I’ve just run up against what is, in the scheme of things, a relatively minor problem that I have no idea how to fix. I think I have blocked drains. Melbourne experienced some pretty intense rain over the weekend, it was even hailing here where I live, and I think something went a little funny in my drain system because something is seriously wrong here. I tried having a shower and managed to flood my apartment before I realised what was going on. It was disgusting.

I’m just really not equipped to deal with this. I mean, it’s not that I literally don’t have the tools to handle it, even though I don’t, it’s more that I just mentally can’t handle the stress of it all. Like, what am I even supposed to do? Am I going to need a sewer replacement? Melbourne is an expensive place to live, I barely make it living from week to week, I can’t afford something like that! Last month, when I chipped my tooth, I had to save up for three weeks and go without dinner for four nights just to make enough money to go to the dentist. So either I start paying to shower at the pool or I find a better solution to all of this. I know there has to be a way to do this, I just have to think.

Being the same person

plumbing companiesSometimes I wonder why I seem to be completely incapable of getting my life together. I mean, on paper, I should have it all figured out. There’s no significant life trauma that could be holding me back, I went to a good school, did well, went to a good uni, and did well there too. I worked a series of terrible jobs, had an internship, and landed myself a halfway decent gig when I made it out of uni. But despite all of that, seeming so organised by all outward appearances, on the inside, my life’s a wreck.

It’s like I never really learned how to ‘adult’ properly. Like I just lurch from one near-miss to the next, shaving it a little too close every time.

Take my current crisis, for example. I’ve known for months know that something is seriously wrong with my drains. I mean, it didn’t start off that badly, but when you leave a problem like that alone, it can only get worse.

Obviously, there are a ton of different plumbing companies in Melbourne – really, we’re spoilt for choice – but that part of my brain that should exist to deal with these situations is conspicuously absent. Instead, I just tell myself that it will be fine and secretly pray that a miracle happens and it fixes itself, as it slowly gets more and more urgent.

Of course that literally never happens. Instead, I wake up one morning with a fine layer of water on my floor and have to take the morning off work to frantically call every drain cleaner in Melbourne. Really, it’s my own fault that it turned into such a catastrophe, but if I’m perfectly honest with myself, that isn’t going to change anything. I’m still going to be as lazy as I’ve always been. At this point, it’s really just too late.

Staging the home is the way to go

property stylistsBob and I have been looking at houses for over two months now. Everytime we get close, something goes wrong. Last time we lost at auction. The time before, the sellers pulled out and decided they were going to stay. So now, our perfect house has come along and I am not going to do anything to lose it. I am pretty sure we have the seen the same furniture in houses before when we went to see it with the estate agent so I inquired as to where the furniture sourced from. Turns out they used an interior decorating company based in Melbourne. Apparently it’s very popular when houses go to auction for a property staging company to be used to accentuate the home’s features. Makes sense.
I could have sworn that the grayscale oversized armchair was following me around. Anyway, aside from the repeating furniture this house was much better suited to us. It has a big garden that wraps all the way around the front, it has two big bedrooms with the option of a third and the best bit of all, it has an open rooftop that can house a massive vegetable patch and still have room for some deck chairs! After we went to view it, we knew straight away we wanted it so we mounted a full on attack to make it ours. It was an open house style event so we immediately got shmoozing anyone we thought we have any decision over whether the house was ours or not. Jim spent a good hour talking to the property staging stylist from the property staging company thinking she was the current owner. I also inadvertently convinced another potential buyer that I am the perfect tenant, she quickly caught on and told me we were both in the same boat.

Desperate times …

conveyancing in CarltonOkay. It’s time. I’ve been stopping myself from doing this for a while now but there comes a point where you know you’ve reached your limits. It’s time to ask for help.

If I’m completely honest, I should have done this months ago. I don’t really know exactly why I didn’t, although I have a pretty good idea (that little sin called ‘pride’ probably had a bit to do with it) but now I need to suck it up and just ask.

The problem is that I can’t ask my friends. There’s no real reason why I can’t, it’s more that I just want to look like I know what I’m doing and that asking them for advice completely undermines that whole image.

Which I guess is what brings me here. To the internet. I need one of you lovely people reading this to help me find a halfway decent conveyancer in Melbourne.

I know they have to be out there, but for the life of me, I just keep running into dead ends. It’s insanely frustrating. Everyone tells me that they’re happy to help and it’s going to be lovely working together blah blah blah but when push comes to shove they’re not really in it for me, they’re in it for themselves.

At this point, I just really want to find a conveyancing company, in Carlton somewhere hopefully, that’s going to work with me, and not against me. That’s going to meet me somewhere in the middle or at least try and come to some kind of a compromise.

So please, all you lovely souls on the internet, if you, any of your family or friends, or literally anybody you’ve ever met has had a nice experience with a good conveyancing company, please let me know. I’m starting to get a little bit desperate here.

Moving to Melbourne: Beauty school queen

Last week we had one of our big family meals. My parents try to arrange one every month or so just so we all stay in the loop with each others lives and don’t end up as strangers. Normally they follow a very mundane routine; chit chat, my dad and brother argue, my mum has one too many and then I sneak out right after the main course. However at this most recent one my sister made a shock announcement. She has been looking at beauty courses in Melbourne and plans to move within the year to start pursuing her dream of owning her own beauty salon. To most families this probably wouldn’t be a massive announcement but no one from our family has moved away, ever. She wants to get her diploma of beauty therapy qualification and then specialise in laser hair removal and open a cutting edge salon. From as long as I can remember she has been obsessed with all things beauty. From doing everyone’s nails, to pretending to be a beauty therapist when her friends came over, she was obsessed. Studying towards a beauty qualification will probably be really good for her, she needs to get some independence and find her own path but my parents don’t want her to leave. They said there were plenty of beauty courses close by but sadly they just don’t compare to the level of education the beauty courses in Melbourne offer. After a lot of screaming I finally decided to stand up for her and defend her against my parents. I told them she needs to move out and find her own life and Melbourne is a great place to do that. There are lots of beauty courses available there and I even offered to pay her rent for the first few months until she gets settled.