Sunday, August 29, 2010

SNOW!! (and photos of the ute)

This post is a little late, since it is a week and a half since I got snowed on driving home (we're not talking a snowstorm or anything, just a light fall as I was coming up over the mountain).  Since then we've pretty much had snow on the surrounding mountains the whole time, but it hasn't come back down to the road I drive into Hobart.

The great thing is that Derek went up the next morning and there was snow on the land in Mountain River.  Again, not great big snow drifts or anything, only about a centimetre coverage by the time he got there in the morning (the block gets a lot of morning sun), but snow nonetheless.  Below are a few photos of the block, in its newly cleared state and with snow!

The ute and the nearly cleared block
Light snow on the land (dark lines are the piles of bracken that we have to burn)

Obligatory ute close up
However, I can categorically state that even with picturesque snow capped mountains surrounding us it is still warmer here than Canberra!!!

Our view with snow

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The New Ute!

Yes it has arrived, well more precisely Derek went into Hobart yesterday and collected it.
The Mazda BT50 is pretty cool, and it is really nice to have a ute so we don't have to try to cram the brushcutter into the Peugeot anymore.  We'll get a photo of it up soon, I'll try to get Derek in his flannie and ugg boots beside it :-)

In store competitions

You know how you sometimes enter in store competitions and never win them, or know anyone who does? Well now you know someone who has.  When Derek bought my bike from Anaconda we entered into a draw to win a few hundred dollars of bike gear.  We didn't look at what the prize was because we assumed we wouldn't win, but then we got a phone call from Anaconda and yes we had won first prize!
We went down to collect the gear and it was a pretty good haul really. Clothes, bike computer, trainer and a cleaning kit.
So maybe the move has been even better than we thought :-)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

It's been a busy 10 days

Since I've been so slack this will be a bit of an epic post, so I'll just get straight into it.

Matt's Exhibition
We went to Melbourne for the opening of The Fortunate Life of an Unfortunate Man in Fitzroy.  This is Matt's second big exhibition and it is really fantastic, and that's not just sisterly bias talking :-)
Derek took photos and Matt will post the exhibition up on his website in the coming weeks.  There are a few images that nearly made me cry, but overall it is a sweet and uplifting exhibition - way to go Matt.
It was also great to catch up with family down there, both Matt and Pia and also Louise, Stephen and Emma.

The Ute
We came back and decided that we really needed to sort out a ute sooner rather than later, since I was starting work on Wednesday and Derek would start losing the car, and the brushcutter doesn't fit very comfortably into the Peugeot.  We got it down to Nissan, Toyota, Mazda and Mitsubishi and headed into town to have a look at their base models.
Funnily enough three of the four dealers we went to are called DJ - so DJ Nissan, DJ Mazda etc, so it's pretty clear that there was a good chance one company was getting our business. 
After gathering all of the information Derek geeked it up with a spreadsheet to try to work out what was the best car for our needs, but it was the discussion with one of the local mechanics that sort of sealed the deal for the Mazda.
So next Friday we officially become locals when we collect our Mazda BT-50 ute, or as I will refer to it from now on 'Derek's Car', because if he thinks I'm driving that thing around he has another thing coming :-)

My New Job
As mentioned above, on Wednesday I started my new job.  Derek drove me in, as that was the day he test drove all of the utes, so at least I didn't have to deal with parking on the first day (which isn't actually bad at all since some of the people at work recommended a place).
The workplace is great, everyone is really friendly and I'm not the only new person.  Another newbie started the same day, and she's come down from the NT, so it's been a big climate change for her.  It's great having another new person to share some of the pressure with, and someone else to talk with about whether we should know things or not.
The bosses seem really nice and it is a very laid back atmosphere in the place, I can actually go to work in jeans all the time if I wish.  There are only 240 people in Housing in total, so it will be really nice being with an organisation where I can know everyone and what they all do again.
My staff all seem really nice as well, and there are only 10 of them this time, which is a bonus.  I also have an office, which is a definite bonus - open plan whilst managing people is never an easy ask.
This is not to say that my bosses, colleagues and staff in the RTA were not nice - I actually do miss a lot of you guys - I'm just saying that I think the Housing role will be a good fit.

Derek's Interview
And for all of you that were bucking for Derek to be a kept man, he has a meeting with a recruitment agency on Monday afternoon to try to get a real job - more on that as it progresses I'm sure.

So a very busy time in the last few weeks.  For anyone paying attention, we still have not sold the Lapstone house, which is probably the only thing that continues to be a downer in this whole process.  We're really at a loss of how to sell the thing, given that there are still heaps of people going through it. I guess we couldn't have everything go our way though, because everything else seems to be going very well at this point in time.

I think I need to get back into the lounge room in front of the fire though, we've hit a cold snap and there is a lot of snow on the higher peaks, including Sleeping Beauty which there is a photo of earlier.

Bye for now, hope you are all well.