It’s been a very long time since I last updated my blog. Not because nothing’s happened, I just haven’t gotten around to it, that’s all.
The most obvious thing that’s happened was that Munson was diagnosed with cancer. After the verdict fell it all went very quick and he came out of surgery without a lump on his back leg. The also shaved off the fur on his leg so it looked more like a chicken leg for a while before it grew back again.
On a more exciting note, my sister Isabel and her boyfriend Calle stayed with us last week. They are doing a world wide trip and their second destination after South Korea was to go to Sydney and then drive up along the coast all the way to Cairns. I hadn’t seen her since just before I left Sweden back in March so it was wonderful to see her again. The chance to meet a family member other than Mike and Munson doesn’t come as often now that I live in Sydney! I took two days off to spend time with them and while I hadn’t planned much beforehand I think we did a good job in doing interesting things. For example, I took them into the city to see the Botanical Gardens which is truly amazing during this time of the year. When the time came to say hello we both cried like babies, but what else would we have done?
Somewhere in between all of this, Mike has continued to take me to daytrips to different places in and out of Sydney. The most memorable was when we drove west of Sydney to The Blue Mountains. And just to make things clear, there are no ‘’blue’’ mountains, they only appear to be in that colour because of the oil which comes from the eucalyptus in the area. I took this photo from one of the many lookout posts around the mountains. On the left down corner you can see a group of pillars called ‘’The three sisters’’.
While autumn is on it’s way back in Europe, spring, (or more like summer) have arrived to Sydney. And it brought a lot of beautiful flowers. My mother taught me well to appreciate whatever you can grow in a garden and it’s been very exciting for me to discover so many new flowers which I’ve never seen before. But I did actually stumble across a very typical flower you’d see in Sweden and it was the Forget-me-not.
During the past weekend we were invited by an old friend of Mike to meet him at an off leash beach just slightly south of Sydney, and this is what happened:
I lifted numerous stones searching for crabs, and although I found a few they looked very ugly compared to this dead one. I had never seen anything like it!
Mike did the Y.M.C.A dance.
When he wasn’t in the water, Munson was busy digging holes or rolling around in the sand.
I saw a giant pelican. Before last weekend I had never seen one but on tv, and now I’ve seen two! Standing like that, it didn’t seem very big, but once it spread its wings to fly off it was obvious that that wasn’t the case.
It sat on a little stone for about 20 minutes before it left.
All in all, it was a beautiful day.
It was Sunday morning and after a big breakfast Mike suggested that we would drive out to Coogee which is in the eastern suburbs of Sydney. While I had been to Bondi and Bronte beach earlier, I had never been to Coogee before yesterday. We parked close to the beach and let Munson had a quick run at the off leach doggie park before we slowly walked along the ocean. We passed two sea pools, one open to everyone and one only for women. The tiny island you can see below is called Wedding Cake Island, don’t ask me why.
After a rather disappointing coffee we drove 10 min up the coast to the tiny peninsula of Clovelly. It’s basically just a big parking lot surrounded by rocks shaped by the ocean.
We walked around for good 30 minutes or so and made sure to breath in as much fresh air coming from the ocean as possible before we returned to our inner west.
…Well, almost. We still have a few boxes sitting around waiting to be unpacked. But most of them either contains DVD’s or books, otherwise everything seems to float to its right place, fast or slow. The coffee machine is on repair and even if we probably have the best coffee shop in Sydney just around the corner, it’ll still be very nice to be able to enjoy a cup of coffee without having to pay 3,5 dollars (ca 23 kr) for every cup. For a couple of days we thought that the SONOS sound system had lost its way somewhere along the way from France but Mike found it in a box the other day.
This is how most of the house is looking at the moment
Pictures of boxes in a corridor isn’t very exciting so I’d like to share this street art of a dalmatian I came across last weekend. I think it looks really cool.
Better late than ever our furniture finally arrived yesterday morning. We got up early to do some last minute tidying while eagerly waiting for the truck with the container to arrive.
The truck arrived on a somewhat schedule time at 08.30 and we weren’t lazy at getting things from the container and into the house. Since Mike clearly is the one with most experience in moving he took the responsibility in making sure every single box was carried to its right place in the house while I started to unwrap everything from paintings to the bed frame. And it was with precaution that I unwrapped our precious Moomin mugs.
I’d say that the movers carried out about 25 boxes full of books from the container. One of the movers asked Mike if he had read them all….Maybe one day he will.
It was truly great to get all the stuff back again and I’m glad that it doesn’t feel as if we are camping in our own house anymore. As I haven’t been playing my PS3 since we left the farm my fingers were itching a little bit to sit down and play for a while but sadly somewhere along the way our TV decided kick the bucket. It isn’t really the end of the world, I barely any time to play videogames anymore and there were things that I had missed more than it, such as the bed, cookware and somewhere to sit and relax besides the chair next to the borrowed picnic table.
Midsummer, or should I say midwinter, came and passed with the pouring rain. A trip to IKEA made things slightly more festive as the food section did a very good job in stilling the hunger for Swedish food. I bought some salt liquorice, cardamom flavoured crisp rolls, pickled herring and two tubes of Kalles Kaviar which basically is smoked roe in a tube. I prefer it eaten with boiled and so I did once I got home along with the herring. The only thing that was missing was a couple of slices of my mother’s home made dark dye bread (Kavring).
I’ve been in Australia for about three months now and this was the first time that missed Sweden and mostly my friends and family. And I think my liver wondered what was going on, not having to deal with way too much alcohol to handle for one weekend.
Down below is a picture of some missed friends.
There’s a light festival going on in downtown right now. It’s not all as psychedelic as the photo below.
The Opera House was beautifully lit up by a giant projector changing colors and patterns every 30 second or so.
A good shot of me and Mike in the house of mirrors.
I need to get a real camera.
In our hip inner-west suburb, Marrickville, there’s a big shopping mall called Marrickville Metro. While it’s very nice to be able to walk back forth to do grocery shopping and all that, there’s one thing that is less great about having so close. Namely the problem with people leaving their shopping trolleys everywhere besides where they should be. Walking through Enmore Park which is situated between us and the Metro you almost always find trolleys nicely lined up on the paved path. And if not there, then anywhere else in the area.
The container from France long at last arrived in Sydney last weekend. We still have to wait a couple of more weeks until it reaches its final destination. We’re both itching to have our stuff back and to sleep in our bed again. It’s been since the end of February back on the farm when we did it last. Munson, however, couldn’t care less about a bed to sleep on. He’s happy to sleep wherever, as long as he can keep us under supervision.
In other news, I finally got a full time job this week. My new job is at a kitchen retail store called Victoria’s Basement. In the past I have only searched for jobs online but this time I walked into the store and simply asked if they were hiring while handing them my resume. I was called in the next day for an interview and a couple of hours after they rang again to let me know that I had gotten the vacant slot. I have no past experience in retail but with some training I think I’ll do just fine. It sure as hell going to feel good to have a secure income again.
Just in time for the Eurovision finale last weekend we took our rented car and headed out of Sydney and up north to visit friends. Before I got there I new that it would be somewhat remote but I didn’t expect it to be totally off the radar. It took some time for the brain to process but while there, it was no biggie. I tried to get a good photo of the house but it proved to be more difficult than expected since it was surrounded by lots and lots of vegetation. See for yourselves.
The absolute highpoint of the visit was when our hosts took us for a walk in the nearby forest on Saturday. Big parts of the area used to be under water and therefore, wherever you looked you found fossils. While me and Mike turned every other stone, Munson was enjoying himself running around and feeling as free and happy as a dog can be. He eventually found a pond which he half drenched to quench his thirst.
The vegetation of the forest was a new experience for me as it totally differs from what we have in Sweden. There were thousands of different Gumtrees, Wild Passionfruit and Mahoganytrees, but the one that really caught my eye was the Grasstree which starts from being a little shrub to grow to a 4 meter tall tree. The fully grown to the right was expected to be over 70 years old.
I don’t remember how or exactly when I started to listen to The Gaslight Anthem. But I instantly fell in love with their second album, “The ‘59 sound”, and since then they have released two more albums which I’ve played many times. So when last year when we still lived at the farm in France I saw that the band was scheduled to play in Sydney it didn’t take many seconds for me to log onto the net and book two tickets. They’ve been playing in Sweden a couple of times but I have never been able to see them and I thought it was about time that I brought Mike to a concert and not the other way around.
The concert was at Enmore Theatre which is a 15 min walk from the house, we passed it the same day during the afternoon and we could clearly hear the band doing the last practice/sound check before the show. The doors opened at 19:00 and the supporting act entered the stage about a half an hour later. When he was done we waited about 20 min until the stage went dark and out stepped the main act. Besides the excitement of seeing my favourite band play live, the first thing that came to my mind was how damn loud it was. Let’s just say that if I didn’t know most of the songs already I would have a hard time trying to figure out what the hell Brian Fallon sang. I quickly exchanged looks with Mike and we decided to move further back for our ears sake. The loudness was a damn shame because I really like Brian’s voice. The set was 22 songs long and the only bad thing I can say about that is that they didn’t play enough songs from their third album “American Slang” which happens to be my favourite album. All in all, I was satisfied with the concert, after we moved further away from the stage the sound wasn’t unbearable loud anymore and It’s not every day that you get to see your favourite band play.
On a sidenote, as we entered the venue I quickly spotted their touring guitarist, Ian Perkins, who in 2011 formed “The Horrible Crowes” together with the singer and released one of the best albums that year titled “Elsie”.
Here’s a iPhone photo of us.