And we are back! Thanks for being patient whilst we settled in in Sydney! We know we have been short on news but it has been a bit crazy since we arrived (especially for me!) but Easter weekend is giving us a chance to kick back.
I guess this will be a long post to catch everyone up with what we have been up to but where to start?
Journey over here went well and can definitely recommend Etihad for those that are coming to visit – especially because there are at least 4 different Manchester City programmes including Blue Moon Rising which is now my favourite film. James thought it was hilarious that I was screaming at the TV, cheering and crying whilst watching it!
My friend Pamelah from camp picked us up at the airport and drove us to our temp apartment armed with a bottle of wine and a USB internet stick so we could get settled! I wish we had taken pictures of our temp apartment when we arrived here but I forgot so here it is tonight in a bit of a miss whilst James is cooking. It has got everything that we need and is super handy for work…but can’t wait to get into our own place!
So we took it ‘easy-ish’ on the first weekend here to get over jet lag and basically walked around the city like wide eyed tourist and tried to get a feel for the kind of neighbourhood we wanted to live in. Pamelah and Wade introduced us to an amazing low key Japanese restaurant which we loved and we generally hung around Darling Harbour a lot! We also bee lined to Bondi to see the lifeguards after our little obsession with Bondi Rescue whilst we were getting excited to come to Sydney. We are planning on how to go back and get our photo taken with them (better than the below) to complete VC’s challenge!
We both started work mid-week and for me it was the baptism of fire I was anticipating… straight into prep for our yearly strategic meeting with management, aforementioned meeting with GVA, a 2 day visit from our NZ distributor and a trip to Melbourne to see the Aussie Distributor… all in 2 weeks. James’ office has a view of the Harbour Bridge which makes me uber jel but I have a shopping centre across the street. (Sarah’s Office on left, James on right – unfair.)
We both definitely have the feeling of moving back into the ‘real world’ – everything is so accessible… loving eating different food everyday for lunch and getting groceries on a Sunday! One first impression of the Aussies is that they have a nice mix between Europe and the UK…they are as sarcastic and dry as the Brits but with a ‘have a nice day’ attitude of the Americans – after living in Switzerland we can’t get over how many people welcome us to Australia “oh, you have only been here 2 weeks… well welcome to Australia on behalf of me and the rest of Australia!” – guy selling Converse trainers, or at least ask how our day is going ‘with feeling’!
The second weekend was ring fenced for house hunting – you can only look at places on Saturdays here but coming from GVA it is awesome you can even look at them at all! We visited 5 places in the allocated 15 minute slots (2 in 1 slot!) in Paddington, Surry Hills and Balmain. We only really liked one of them that was in Surry Hills, around the corner to an awesome place we ate with Hannah Guz the night before and so we put in the application. We had been thorughly scared about the housing market as apparantly it is as tough as GVA and people even offer more rent to secure places… but shockingly we got accepted straight away! Woohoo! I am going to leave desciption of the new crib to another post (partly because I cannot remember much about it as we had 5 min to look at it)….but here is a little picture
YES it has a GARDEN & STAIRS!! It is in the really buzzy area of Sydney of Surry Hills which has so many restaurants and bars…some people think we are crazy to live here due to the traffic (apparently that is the most important thing in Sydney and seems to form everyone’s opinion on housing!) but we are actually happy to get the train to work — I have been finding it quite relaxing actually – then we will figure something out when we get a car – but 40 min in a car doesn’t really phase me – it is better than London Underground right?
Socially we have made some advances Spent time with St Andreans Hannah and Jason (my academic father) & his fiance Judy and their lovely dogs Ernie and Chloe – love those pups! We were also invited to a pop up dinner called ‘mussels by moonlight’ which was awesome. Hosted by a welsh chef Matt and lovely host Emma, the plan was to have 3 courses of mussels under the moon on a roof terrace whilst a Spanish duo played… unfortunately it pissed it down but the fun wasn’t spoilt and we had delicious food and wine inside. Matt and his girlfriend Beth has agreed to do the SMH best things to eat in Sydney with us so watch this space.
I think that is almost everything covered… can’t really comment on Melbourne as spent most of it on Codine and in bed after my back seizing up last week – but at least I had a nice view (hot air balloons at 7am!) and will be back! Had a lovely dinner at Donovans though! Talking of dinners, we went to Icebergs in Bondi this week for James’ birthday but think that will get a post all on its own!
From now on we will keep you updated regularly! Hope everyone is well and enjoying the Easter break and let us know when you want to Skype!