The Final Push 2014.
I cannot believe we are finally here! This time last fortnight we were two days away from prepack, mentally preparing for 10 days of hell.
Monday 10th November we had the packers in our house packing everything we owned into boxes. The trick is to be one step ahead of them and make sure you have 2 suitcases on your bed which are sacred. In these you pack the TV remotes, Fist Aid supplies, kids stuff for 10 days, your stuff for 10 days, 2 coffee cups, a teaspoon, 2 forks, knives and plates, sugar and a jar of instant coffee. Ask the movers to pack the kettle the next morning upon threat of death. We dropped Hiccup to the vet for temporary care in case he freaked out with all the boxes like our previous cat did – she had to be flown up to our new town after a friend of ours found her on the roof 3 days after we had had to leave.
Tuesday 11th November the packers were back and after removing part of our fence the truck was loaded with two trailers – packed to the BRIM I can tell you. At this point we are homeless but hubbys employer in their
better insane judgement had rostered Mr Point Five to work in our old town for the following two days. We stayed at a domestically challenged motel for two nights so G Man could still go to school whilst hubby worked.
Thursday 13th November hubby picked up the cat and I took the kids up to Perth for three nights at my Dads where we stocked up on last minute bulk groceries (which we had to use Dads engal for the trip here as the one we had ordered had not arrived). We bought $300 worth of meat which I packaged up into meal portions and froze for the trip, many chicken nuggets and a butt tonne of cheese and yoghurt.
Sat 15th November Mr Point Five and I went out for a fancy pants dinner for my birthday (the next day) in Perth; the last time we went out for a fancy pants dinner was my birthday 2006, pre kiddies so it was WELL overdue. You cannot imagine being 41 years of age and being picked up by your father from a wine laden dinner and trying to be quiet in the back seat lest he find out your were well tipsy but being unable to remain quiet for more than 2 minutes and quite enthusiastically discussing the downside of the sound system which is rigged for your children in your new car. Fairly certain my cover was blown.
Sunday 16th November, apart from being the BEST DAY OF THE YEAR, was the day we picked the cat up from the vet (again), loaded the car and left Perth at 0920 on route to our new town. I wish I could have taken some photos along the way for you all but with me driving our family car with the two kidlets and hubby driving his little hairdresser car with the cat, there was nothing to be done. (*cough cough*, no selfies in THIS car whilst driving). It wasn’t long before the sheep and crop paddocks turned to scrub and red dirt; not long at all. Out this way its all cattle stations and prospecting for gold. There is red dirt for miles and not a rising hill, as was common in our previous Great Southern towns was seen. Flat as the proverbial pancake. We saw a few emus, goats and kangaroos along the roadside as well and not a sheep in sight, just scrub. I imagine a month or two back and the wildflowers would have been stunning along the road edge as they survive on the winter rain run-off from the road. And the ROAD TRAINS! Oh my! 3-4 trailers long and carrying all sorts of mining equipment, tyres larger than houses; you name it. The boys were fascinated with the thoroughfare. Seven hours, and many episodes of Scooby-Doo later, we arrived in our new home town at 1615. After depositing Hiccup at the courthouse for the night we bunked up in one room at the local hotel – we were all in bed lights out by 8.30pm.
Monday 17th November 0630 Mr Point Five met the truck at our new house. Before 7am I was fielding phone calls from the shower asking where I wanted the furniture placed so the boys and I hightailed it over sans breakfast. The truck pulled away just after lunch and we all collapsed in a heap.
Tuesday 18th November 0800 Mr Point Five starts work and the boys start school at 0830. We have no phone line and after lengthy conversations with our service provider it was decided that Telstra actually have to come here and physically install a line to our house. 650km from the nearest city. So – that was booked for early December and then it will be 5-10 working day after that that we will have interwebs. With any luck it will be here by Christmas – a VERY welcome present!
So, our house.
This was it in 1897, two years after it has started construction. That door on the left under the “Police Station” sign is now our front door and the LHS two buildings are now housing for the Station Officer in Charge. Originally the housing part was all part of the original station. The middle building (with the three windows) is still used as the Court house; I had to go and vacuum up the kitty litter from Hiccups stay last Sunday night for Thursdays Court proceedings The two buildings to the right of the courthouse is where Mr Point Five works at the station and the RHS building is the Post Office. Hubby only has to walk from our dining room, through a door to the courthouse and into work. Slacker
As I mentioned before, the part where we are living was not originally designed as a house. I imagine what we use as our loungeroom (the room on the front left) was the original office. I swear the ceilings are at least 14 foot high – makes changing a light bulb very challenging (and cleaning the ceiling fans, a chore not done in decade I think – Grrrrr) There is a little room at the back of it which is a small store room but it does have a sink so perhaps the original OIC lived in this room and had a little bathroom? Who knows. I’m not even sure he lived at the station but I guess back then he may have, in very small quarters; a bedsit of sorts. There is still the original safe of the station which is actually cemented into our (loungeroom) floor. I have just discovered tonight that it actually still opens and we have the key so we have a real safe in this house! How fancy!
I guess our kitchen was originally the station kitchenette of sorts and has been modernised, sort of. I think the taps (very stained and drippy) are the original ones! We need to turn the hot water tap on and off outside when we want to use the hot water in the house as the tap outside drips terribly and water overflows and comes in the back door. The only two rooms with robes in them are upstairs so by default we have one and the boys are sharing the other. They are the only rooms upstairs, no bathroom. Ugh. Its a LONG trek to the loo in the middle of the night. Once again, 12 foot ceilings at least upstairs. I have never lived in a two story house before so that novelty forgives the lack of upstairs bathroom. For about the next week I am guessing.
Our bathroom is the original station one I think. It is TINY and has the shower over the bath. There is a loo and a laundry which used to be outside off the back verandah but this has been enclosed and we are using it as the boys toy room. See the original limestone walls of the outside building painted white? Thats the closed loo door on the right.
There is a hallway which runs from the front door to the back room above. It has a pressed tin ceiling, as does the room we are using as our study which goes off this and into the lounge. It also has a stupidly high ceilings and a ridiculous chandelier which I LOVE.
Off this hallway opposite the kitchen is a little drop down hatch. On the other side of the hatch is what used to be the holding cells for the station (the actual goal/jail was in a building opposite our house on the other side of the highway which the current caravan park used to use as an ablution block!!!) and also as a makeshift morgue. You can access the cell from outside the back of the house.
Mr Point Five has cleverly turned this into a cat door for Hiccup. Fairly sure this is a first for this house or any cat for that matter!!
This is the view from my front door. Over the road there is the Shire office in what used to be the Gentlemen’s Club. Down the road is the only pub in town and that little wall with the umbrella and bougainvillea is their beer garden, No arguments over who is skippering! Pretty much that last tree you see in the middle of the road is the end of town and our house stands at the other end. So thats our town. All of it. Our deli (super hexy) gets its fresh F & V once a week (runs out uber quick) and bakes on Tuesday and Thursday for fresh bread rolls. Dairy comes in once a week but seems to still be on the shelves all week. There is a BP roadhouse (massive for all the road trains) and a hardware/grog shop.
We did a lot of bulk buying in Perth.
Master J’s fave activity is standing on the front verandah and waiting for the road-trains. There is never a long wait!
The school here (K-12) has about 30 or so enrolled but if 2/3 of those turn up each day it is busy. My two are the only ones in their class (Kindy to year 3 is one class) who bring their own packed lunch. The rest of the kids get their lunch brought to school; a meat-pie or sausage roll, from the deli each day organised by the school. I was told that if the school didn’t do this, then the kids would not eat through the day as they had nothing at home to bring with them. Its really sad. They are also the only ones who bring a bag with their own water bottle and G Man is the only one who has his own stationary/books that we bought for him. The other students are supplied theirs by the school along with their uniforms. Its an eye-opening situation here is all I can say.
We are here for Christmas and New Years which I am sure will be very quiet. An orphans party on our own. It will be the first year we have not had extended family with us as my Mum usually makes the trek to wherever we are for Christmas afternoon/night but the 7 hour trip is just too much for her and her husband (she is on an invalid pension and her husband is her carer; just too much). My Dad and his wife are coming up for a few days next month for an early Christmas but the actual day itself will be very quiet – just us four. If the other cops are in town I will see if they want to come over for a BBQ of sorts but we will see.
Anyway. I think thats it? If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments. We adore our new home. It is totally cool to be a part of such history, and I adore local history; am reading up all I can on our new town and its historical place in our State.