My Master Holiday Beach Plan

Lorne hotelWhy is it so hard to find accommodation when the summer comes?

I mean, I understand why, but I’m working under a very specific strategy here, and it’s not working out for me. I thought that once the summer came around, everyone would be like I usually am. That is, they’d all decide not to go on holiday that year, because everyone else is going on holiday that year, so what’s the point in going on holiday that year when you’re just going to be caught up in the flurry of people going on holiday, that year?

I try this every time, and it HAS to work out at some point. Not now, however. So, I’m resigned to another busy holiday, forging my way through throngs of families and merry elderly people taking walks on the beach. Thank heavens the beach accommodation in Lorne is so plentiful and generally very good, otherwise I might decide to actually stay home…like everyone else should.

I might be working on flawed psychology, but I feel like at one point I HAVE to strike gold. There’s going to be a year, some shining year, when I try to book a hotel in Lorne and the prices will have dropped dramatically because everyone has just happened to not go to the beach that year. Maybe they all decided that a trip to Alice Springs would be nicer, or something. Not that the price is a huge part of things, because the true wonderfulness starts when I get to Lorne. The streets will be empty, the cafes quiet, the beaches devoid of most anyone. I’ll take a stroll, enjoy the tranquillity and not be interrupted by any screaming children or arguing couples on their honeymoon and immediately regretting their nuptials.

Not this year, however. Just going to find myself a nice Lorne hotel and put up with the hustle and bustle. But NEXT year…

-Alice

My Property Future, Apparently

vendor statementsApps will do practically anything for you nowadays, up to and including deciding your future career and being your virtual butler. I for one wouldn’t remember a single thing if I didn’t set reminders in my phone for all my appointments. And now I’m using  a new app I was recommended to see if I should stop renting and buy a home…essentially, trusting my financial future to a free app I saw advertised before a Me-Straw video. Yep, that’s our world now! Strange times indeed.

It all looks pretty professional, though. Apparently it was developed in partnership with a number of housing professionals right here in Melbourne. Property conveyancers, landlords, all that sort of thing…and I think you can tell. It’s been getting some rave reviews, anyway. The whole premise is that you put all your personal details into a massive database, and it comes up with a recommendation of how to save for a home. Then it directs you to the right information sources and businesses to help you out, which I guess was part of the whole deal behind the scenes. Everybody wins.

I was a bit hesitant about giving away my info, particularly since it’s a very extensive survey you have to complete. Seriously, it took about fifteen minutes, and I had to dig through a few old drawers until I finally got all the info it needed. Still, in the end I think it was worth it! I got a detailed rundown of my financial situation, Melbourne’s property situation and a few property conveyancers and lawyers who’d be able to help me further. Plus they had links to all the terms you don’t understand- vendors statements, sale of land acts, that sort of thing- so it’s not confusing. It’s not the be all and end all, either…I still actually have to go and talk to the professionals.

-Tyler

Sitting is the Ultimate Good

South East conveyancingWalking for too long can’t be good for a person. I used to hate the office grind, but over the years I’ve come to realise the many benefits of sitting down for very long periods, being able to drink coffee whenever I like and generally not moving all that much. That’s why i hated being an estate agent. Sure, there was the nice, comfortable office bit, but sometimes I’d have to go places. Places are the worst. Sometimes it would be raining, and sometimes I’d get lost on the way and I’d have to walk up and down a street until I found the place. Even then, I’d have to spend all that time on my feet, showing people round.

I’ve bounced around the various industries since then. Used to think I could make it doing conveyancing in Melbourne, south east specifically. That’s how it is in the property game: people have their ‘sectors’. Cross into a rival sector and things escalate very quickly, so I decided to establish myself in the south east. Thing was, even in conveyancing with all its lovely files and tasks that require you to do a lot of sitting, I still had to go places sometimes. Our office was fledgling, now part of some big conglomeration, and often we were called upon to go to places for meetings. Most of the other conveyancers seemed to be pretty okay with the whole ‘going places’ thing, but it brought back terrible memories of the estate agent gig, so I had to move on.

I’m pretty happy with my stable, secure, stagnant office job at present. Some days I don’t even have to get up out of my chair once. But then, that’s the beauty of conveyancing…people move around you. It’s the whole game.

-Lou

Yes, Your Child is Wonderful

Melbourne dry needling coursesVelma is just one of those friends. You know…the ones you have to pretend to like, even though there really isn’t much to like. The moment she came through the door she was ordering our butler around like she was back in her own mansion. Preston took it well, but as a former knife throwing champion I’d like to see what he’d do if Velma ever pushed him too far. Oh, and then she goes on and on about her thirteenth bathroom, just because she recently had it installed and has to let everyone know about it. Just smile, Percy says. Our families have important business connections, he says. It’s all I can do to take that priceless Ming vase off the wall and smash it over her bleach-blonde head.

Of course, she has to go on and on about what her daughter is up to. Prunella is only twelve and she has a PhD! She teaches origami to homeless people! That dry needling course was the newest development. Apparently they’ve started up in Melbourne, and since it’s new and flashy, Velma just had to get her daughter to be an expert at that too. What’s the use, anyway? Prunella is being groomed for a life as a socialite, so getting her to learn about dry needling or whatever it is? All a waste. Oh, maybe she can can go a party in ten years and talk about it with a group of businesspeople, but otherwise, it’s not something I’d ever let Madeira do.

But dry needling is all new and special, so it has to be added to Prunella’s growing list of activities. Just for something else Velma can talk about, for sure. Madeira is tending to her own ant farm now. Did I get a chance to mention it? Of course not, even if I’d wanted to, which I do not because it’s very unladylike. I might make an exception for those dry needling courses in Melbourne, since it all sounds a bit more dainty…but that’s Madeira. Lovely girl, but she doesn’t give me much to boast about.

-Cecelia

How to choose a heating system

heating PerthSelecting a heating or cooling system for your house is a large task. You will want to ensure that you will be happy with your choice for years to come, as a heating system is intended to be used for decades. It is crucial to choose a system that will last the distance, be easy to maintain, and fulfil your needs. For a premium choice, consider ducted heating and cooling in Perth.

A new heating solution is invariably an expensive venture, but it adds value to your home and adjusting the temperature can make a large difference to your quality of life. In fact, it can even alter your lifespan. The elderly, small children, and others with health concerns can die due to severe highs and lows in temperature. Even if this does not apply to you, the air temperature can have an effect on your lifestyle. In an extremely cold house, you will be inclined to eat more, which may lead to health issues such as diabetes and heart disease if you eat too many treats. In extreme temperatures, you will also be not so inclined to exercise, compromising your wellbeing.

When selecting a heating system, firstly consider the size and shape of your home. A studio apartment will be well served by a wall unit or even a portable heater. A sprawling three-bedroom family home with open living areas will be most comfortable with a ducted system which pumps warm air into each room. In some areas, it is becoming more popular to install central heating, Perth is one such growth area at the moment. You likely have a neighbour who has already been through the heating installation journey and it is always a good idea to glean their insights if their home is similar to yours.

You will also want to consider how you will use the system. For example if you travel during the summer, you may not need cooling, although it would be wise to get it at the same time in case circumstances change.

My Wayward Pilot Daughter

aluminium ute toolboxes MelbourneOur family line has been ruined. I have given birth to a wayward daughter who refuses to follow traditions. Where did I go wrong? Was it this cruel, callous and yet so inviting world that pulled her away with its promises and twisted pleasures? That’s got to be it, because our family traditions are as solid as they can be and it can’t have been from within the family.

Well, I’m still casting a suspicious eye on her uncle Jamie. Oh, he followed the traditional call to become a nurse, sure enough, but I’ve always gotten the impression that he didn’t enjoy it all that much. And then there was the family Christmas where he stunned the entire dinner table by posing a hypothetical scenario where he became a doctor instead of a nurse. Granny almost had a heart attack right there and then.

What does Alyssa hate so much about being an electrician? We got her Melbourne’s best ute toolbox for her birthday and everything, along with a starter set of tools. That’s about as traditional as it gets in our enclave, with the sixteenth birthday marking the day the females go and become electrical apprentices. I jumped at the call, my mother jumped at the call, and her mother before her did the same, all the way back as long as we could remember. I can see it clearly as day, my sixteenth birthday all those years ago. We didn’t have toolbox central locking back then, nothing quite that fancy, but my toolbox was still a thing of beauty. I looked at it and saw an abundant future filled with electrical work. And yet there’s Alyssa, wasting her money on flying lessons and constantly dropping hints that she wants to break the mold. Granny would toss and turn in her grave!

I’m having a serious chat to Jamie, just to get to the bottom of this. Maybe he’s been filling her head with ideas. I mean…it’s such a nice toolbox. Such a full and useful set of aluminium accessories. And she’ll be inheriting my ute, with custom under tray draws and everything. I just don’t understand who’d pass that up!

-Adelaide

Reality TV Makes Home Dreams Come True

buyers advocatesI am the winner! That’s what I love about reality television. Everyone gets a fair shake of the sauce bottle to show everyone else what they’re worth, no matter what their station in life. I was living in a two-bedroom shack in Footscray, and now I’ve been in touch with some of Melbourne’s best buyers advocates so that I can hunt around the the home of my dreams. One day of filming turned my entire life around, and I’m still coming to grips with it!

Of course, things started terribly. There was quiz round, everyone else seemed to know so much more than me and I thought that was it. I had no time to study because the kids needed to be put to bed before I went out to my night shift, and then the lack of sleep wasn’t helping matters. I was so nervous I couldn’t even have slept anyway. But then some idiot messed up his final question about interest rates, and I was through to the second round! Now, decor is in my blood. It comes to me naturally, even though I’ve never had much to work with in the past. I make my shack look nice, you can definitely count on that!

So there was another idiot who recommended the wrong curtains and she was out of the competition pretty much instantly. Lilac, seriously! What a complete dunce. I scored full points, and then we were through to the final round. Basically we had to take the place of a buyers advocate and find a million-dollar property for a family. Despite how out of my depth I was, I gave it a go…and managed to snag a beachfront property ahead of the competition that the judges thought was simply the best find they’d ever seen.

And now look at me. Chumming it up with a quality Melbourne property advocate, finding my own beachfront property. So happy!

-Sheila

Tree Removal is Truly Wonderful

Melbourne tree loppingI’ve always really, really hated trees, so the thought of them being removed makes me feel good inside. Like…okay, it’s like when you see a contestant on a show you really hate get voted/kicked off, and it’s just the best feeling because you know you won’t have to see them any more. I’ve made extra sure there’s not a single tree anywhere on my property, and that’s the way it’s staying because no WAY am I letting any of them grow. I have every Melbourne arborist number taped to the inside of my kitchen cupboard, just in case the opportunity comes to knock down a tree and I happen to be the one to make the call.

Actually, I did seriously consider becoming an arborist when I was younger and my seething hatred for trees was less refined. It all began back in the summer of ‘92, when I was very much younger. One day I saw a tree, just sitting there minding its own business, and I thought…gosh, that makes me so angry. Here we all are stumbling through life, and that tree is just sitting there, growing. That’s all it ever has to do. That tree, and every tree in the world, will never understand our struggles, or even make the effort to give it a go. It’ll never have a bad breakup, have to pay a bill, be forced to babysit for a terrible child, get fired from a job, have to get up early for work after a night of partying, contract a terminal disease, be press-ganged into watching a really awful romantic comedy or undergo the torment of a family reunion where you end up seated between drunk uncle Dan and criminally insane grandma Edith.

They just sit there, and there are millions of people around the world going on and on and ON about how we need to protect them. Oh, the poor trees!

I say no. They can all burn for all I care, because I lived through that family reunion and the fact that no tree ever has to do anything similar just fills me with rage. So I’m happy that Melbourne tree lopping is a real thing. THEY might not do it for those reasons…but I can still look upon their work, and smile.

-Evan

Good deed start with air conditioning

air conditioning service SydneyI have started a new habit. Every day, I aim to do one good deed for someone else. Not only will others benefit from my newfound source of selflessness, but it will also enrich my own life.

I begin this new regime yesterday. My first good deed was for my sister-in-law. There is still some friction between Marie and I. You would think it would be difficult to do a favour for Marie from across the state border, but I had just the thing in mind. It was easy to remotely organise for an air conditioning service in Sydney.

We had previously had a fight about her air conditioning. I wanted her to get it fixed so I would not be uncomfortable on my visit, and she would not budge. She did end up getting it fixed, begrudgingly. I realise now that her opposition was likely to be motivated by her hip pocket. Sydney is notoriously expensive, and money is always tight for Marie.

Fortunately due to Pat’s salary, we do not have that problem. So I thought I would make amends by paying for her to get her air conditioning serviced. We have enough money that many of my good deeds will involve charitable acts, I think. I know maintenance is crucial for air conditioning in Sydney, the reason on that the air conditioner was on the blink in the first place is likely to be related to her failure to get it regularly serviced.

My efforts at extending the olive branch to Marie have once again been misinterpreted. She was on the phone to me this morning after an air conditioner maintenance technician knocked on her door. She locked him out and yelled at me to mind my own business. I explained that her air conditioning is my business now that I have turned over a new leaf. She did not let the maintenance person in, but I called and made another appointment for tomorrow. I think she will come around once she realises the power of positive deeds.

On the Work Platforms, High in the Sky

bailey laddersToday my therapist asked me to write down my three biggest questions that I feel I need answered before I die. So I came up with a list I’m pretty satisfied with:

  1. Why don’t more animals wear hats?
  2. How do sandwiches become more delicious when they’re cut in half?
  3. Why don’t humans have wings?

That last one has always been a bone of contention for me; in fact it often keeps me up at night. Flying is one of the greatest activities there is, as evidenced by my multiple dreams in which I’m a beautiful fruitbat and I’m soaring through the trees of Madagascar in pursuit of the Nacho King. I ALWAYS update my therapist when I get that one. It’s a majestic feeling like no other.

But really, I won’t accept evolution as anything more than a theory if someone can’t explain why we haven’t grown wings. There’s so much SPACE up there, you know? It’s why I got a job in construction, to be all around those big, lovely, tall bailey ladders and piles of strong scaffolding. It’s not flight, but it gets you right up there with the birds and to me that’s basically the same thing. That was my job for a whole…two weeks or so. I was kicked off the job after I tried to build a set of wings to jump off the top of the scaffolding and say hello to the sun. Something about breaking all the health and safety rules at once. Well, yeah…probably…but you see, I really thought those wings were going to work. It wasn’t like I tried it out on a day that wasn’t windy. I’m not an IDIOT.

So there you have it. I still maintain that aluminium work platforms are the closest we’ll ever get to the sky where we belong. That’s why I had a set of trestles set up in my back garden, which I kept jumping off into the neighbour’s garden, who called the police who eventually set me up with this nice therapist. Don’t know what a therapist is, but I imagine it’s like flight school for your mind.

-Pat