Saturday, 13 January 2007


For those who have wondered, Canberra is damn hot. At least the Chief Minister has stopped posturing about his defence against bushfires (due to the Coroner saying he basically failed this in 2003).

Before leaving New York we had been corresponding with the owners of a rather interesting sounding property of 57 acres about 30 minutes out of Canberra. The online advert for it is We duly visited it and rated it as really excellent. The difficulty was that they already had an offer (but not a contract) on it. We suggested what we could do as an offer if it became available and that was accepted. Hooray.

Then off to a lawyers to arrange f9or contracts to be exchanged as quickly as possible. First issue was the owners had a mortgage with the Commonwealth Bank which will take three weeks to discharge. Then we got a huge list of things to check by our lawyer. Fortunately she is action oriented and was able to sort a lot of them within a day. I would give her some publicity here, but she is moving to Brisbane by the end of January so it is pointless – but this is another reason to speed things up!

Then we hit a blockage like unto half a packet of Imodium! It’s called Palerang Council who have a ‘file’ allegedly containing all the approvals for the property. This would take “3 – 5 days to make available”. After 3 days I rang the Council where some lady, who I am sure loves children and other small mammals, said the files have to come from store in Hume and are only delivered twice a week with the next delivery Tuesday. She assured me that it was not possible for me to speed this process up and that she had no idea when it would be delivered on Tuesday “because the are delivered by courier”. If anyone else can understand that last comment please let me know.

There are now a number of reasons for buying the place:
1) We love it.
2) It is close(r) to where Ingrid, our daughter has a place;
3) It is in a marginal Federal Electorate so our vote will count when we lodge it against the Howard Government; and
4) As a ratepayer I will be entitled to lobby for this woman to be sacked.

Watch this blog!

Sunday, 7 January 2007

Back to Australia

We have now migrated from Manhatted to Weston, a suburb of Canberra. This was a painless process with a great flight across the Pacific. A Cro-Magnon from the Western suburbs of Sydney who occupied the QANTAS transfer desk at Kingsford Smith airport attempted to destroy the trip. Fortunately for us his coleagues in every other part of the airline rose to the occasion and delivered:
1) quality client service; and
2) our luggage to where it was intended to go.

Since returning things have moved apace (although I am still unhappy with my running) and will be detailed in the next update of this blog. Hopefully that will happen in 2 or 3 days not the same number of months.