It’s been a busy couple of weeks for us here in Perth.

Most excitingly, after several days of viewing shitty flats and rooms your granny wouldn’t dare live in, we moved into a nice big room in a brand new share-house.

We LOVE this place!

  • It’s cool (22 degrees in fact – I know, ‘cause it says so on the remote control for our in-room air-con!)
  • It’s modern  – there is a fingerprint scanner on the front door instead of a key lock! This causes both Roo and I to run around screaming “MY GOD IT’S THE FUTURE!!” every time we successfully use it. Which, I have to admit, is far more often than we actually leave the house.
  • But most importantly of all, there is a 50 inch TV!

Yes, that’s right:

50 Inches!

VERY Big TVIt’s also bizarrely empty, like an executive ghost-house. We’ve lived here for almost a week now, that 50” TV is sitting right there surrounded by comfy red sofas – yet to my knowledge I’m the only person who has ever turned it on.

People live here – allegedly – and occasionally I’ll sit bolt upright in the middle of the night when a strange sound disturbs the silence – a cough! From one of the rooms surrounding ours… there IS life on planet NewHouse!

The place is immaculate. Spotless! Roo and I are supposed to be on cleaning duty this weekend, but I honestly can’t find anything to do! The dishes seem to get washed up and put away right after anyone eats. It happens so fast I get quite nervous during dinner, half expecting someone to steal it off me and wash it before I’ve finished my sausages.

As regular readers might recall, my parents have not been quite so lucky with the properties they let out; in fact we viewed a house just before this one which was only two years old, and already the carpets were ruined. Massive grease stains tracked right across the floor and up the stairs. How such a mess was even possible I don’t know. It looked like a giant squid had given birth in the living room. I began to wonder if the last tenant had brought his Harley Davidson inside for an oil change.

Well, we didn’t rent that house. (Sorry Wayne!) We held out for the biggest, nicest, cleanest house I think I’ve ever lived in. Then, when the owner called us and told us we’d been chosen out of a dozen applicants, I went to the bank to withdraw rent money, only to find out that my card has been blocked by the bank. Something to do with them not knowing I was in Australia… despite the fact that they’d spent the last two months handling my emigration paperwork.

Hm, what else?

Oh yes.

We also bought a car.

Now, I’m sure I don’t have to tell you what a minefield buying a used car can be. We did a lot of soul searching beforehand, and came up with an honest, no-nonsense approach; we trusted to fate.

I had a good feeling that day, as did Roo. I’m a big believer in the power of positive thought, and in trusting the Universe to help me out. It’s a happy, calming philosophy to live with, and it’s been a long time since I felt in control of my life enough to be so free and trusting. Far too long in fact; because what I should have remembered is that Fate really fucking hates me.

Honestly, I think there should be a disclaimer on some of these self-help books, the ones that advocate sitting back and letting the universe do the driving. Somewhere in the small print it should say ‘WARNING! First ensure that Fate is on your side. If not, discount all previous advice.”

So, yeah. I channelled my inner hippie, placed my trust in Fate and bought the car that seemed right for us.

And Fate smiled, and laughed, and then fucked me.

White CarThe car began to squeal. It had to be the brakes, because they were the only thing not covered by the warranty. It was definitely a brake-y type of squeal.

We took it to a mechanic, who told us the ‘rotors’, were so groovy they also needed replacing – and here, I didn’t even think our car could fly! Apparently I’d bought a helicopter. And a groovy one at that.

Replacing the rotors was one of those jobs that made the mechanic suck air in over his teeth. I felt an instant pain in my chest – right where my wallet sits…

I called the guy who sold the car and moaned at him until he agreed to split the cost of the repairs. This was my one minor victory for the week, but it was soon overshadowed by a strange knocking sound…

We’d had the car back for less than a week. The central locking had packed up, but we could live with that. The inside light being broken as more of a pain. The air-con wasn’t really cold anymore, but Roo was about to start work, which meant no-one would be driving the car in the middle of the day anyway. So we could deal. But the knocking… whenever we turned right, it would start. CLUNK-CLUNK-CLUNK – getting faster as the car did, and getting louder day by day. At first we decided to ignore it, on the grounds that we couldn’t afford to fix it no matter what it was. But by the time it was drowning out the stereo (the one thing still working inside the car), we figured there wasn’t much choice.

I typed the symptoms into a diagnostic site I found through Google and it came up with a message that said ‘Congratulations! Your car is knackered.’

White Car At NightTo cut a long story short, we needed a new CV joint. So the mechanic cut the old joint off and ordered a new one which turned out to be the wrong one which couldn’t be fitted which left the car up on blocks at precisely the time Roo was due to start her first day of work since 2009.

There, that was short! Poor Roo couldn’t cancel, so she spent two hours researching a route via public transport (which co-incidentally also took two hours to travel). She got up at 5am to start work at 8am, and as she sat on the bus/train/bus/bus/bus and then walked a kilometre and a half, I lay in bed cursing Fate. Maybe that’s why she doesn’t like me.

The silver lining? Roo earned marginally more than her combined bus and train fare, the bank still won’t let me use my cash-card so I’ve put the car repair bill on a credit card (which is the same as not having to pay it at all, right?) – and the car can now turn corners without causing people nearby to duck for cover.

We live in a beautiful place, although we can’t buy any food, and… did I mention the 50-inch TV?

On the way home from the mechanic the car developed a strange clicking sound,  like two bits of cutlery hitting each other, which grew faster as the car went faster and louder as we continued driving…

But it’s still quieter than the stereo, so we’re not worried.

So… What I’d like to know from you folks is, how’s your week been?




10 thoughts on “PerthLife

    1. I have a feeling it will all be okay… I just have to trust in Fate. NO, wait! hang on, that’s how I got in this mess in the first place! Bloody Fate…
      We’re okay though – and the house is AMAZING! Which more than makes up for the car trouble. And anyway, I can’t drive the thing as I don’t have a license!

  1. Thats right…car problems nothing to do with you because you can’t drive! But wait…soon you WILL get an Australian drivers license and then everyone will be ducking for cover!
    I never know who to trust, the mechanic who might be overcharging you but trying to cover it by the warranty…or the used car salesman who might pay half but insists it is out of the goodness of his heart because it wasnt covered by warranty anyway! We should all just ride donkeys, and be paid extra for our commute to work as an anti carbon-tax!

    1. I have only one problem with the donkey – I don’t mind sitting on the back at all – but there is one particular aspect of donkey maintenance which I just KNOW would fall to the passenger; shovelling the sh1t away from the back end of it…

    1. I don’t blame Kia… Actually yes I do! ARSE BANDITS!!! Who makes cars out of painted friggin’ tinfoil?
      Sodding ‘Kia’… who the hell are they anyway? Has anyone else heard of them? Am I the only man alive to be conned into buying one??
      Is mine the only one of it’s age left, because all the others have disintegrated due to innate crappiness?
      Yeah, not so impressed with the Kia…

  2. Which reminds me……..picked Saoirse up from playschool today to be told that she saw elephants today – real live ones – on Wexford main street!! Turns out there wasn’t anything psychadelic (sic?) in her shepherd’s pie, the visiting circus decided to parade 5 adult elephants down the town followed by an very unfortunate guy with a wheelbarrow in tow! Am I glad Nelly didn’t decide to reenact one of those ‘When Animals fight back’ moments – am i overreacting by thinking who the hell authorised that??? Do you remember how narrow the town is, its the same area where we had that delish hot choc. Maybe its just becos I have a problem with circuses using animals! But hey, you landed on your feet with your new pad guys well done! Poor Roo, not a great start to your first day 🙁

    1. Hi Linda!
      Hefalumps in Wexford? It’s the title of a movie for sure!
      That is a little street though – imagine if one sat on your car for a rest! Or shat on your doorstep… guess that guy with the wheel barrow was busy!
      I’m definitely NOT a fan of animals in the circus, but as far as I understand it it’s quite common to ‘walk’ the elephants to the venue – well, sometimes they take the bus… :0)
      Saw a documentary on it in the US, they had a train fully customized to ferry the animals around – then of course they just have to get ’em from the station to the big top…
      Glad Saoirse isn’t getting psychedelics in her dinner – steering clear of those mushrooms are we…? :0)
      Love to you both!
      Tony n Roo

  3. Hi Nerja Donkey Sanctuary Your work is fantastic ! The new website is really good, just missing pictures of all the donkeys you have now in the sanctuary and not only the ones you can adopt : ) and also missing a bit info of how mistreated these donkeys are and why its so important to help them Best regards and Donkey Love from Anja, Denmark

    1. Now, this comment is quite clearly SPAM, but I just had to it through, for one reason: it’s not every day I get sent Donkey Love from Denmark. Seriously. That sort of stuff almost never happens! So, thanks for that, whatever your name is: a person who signs her comments as ‘Anja’, but her web avatar calls her ‘Joane Perrigan’, and her email address is ‘Rus Bohlig’… now that’s one confused schizophrenic possible Danish donkey lover!

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