Includes book reviews and bits from writer's journal. For the professional stuff, see website link below left.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Hi honey, I'm home! Didja miss me?

What a saga! Six weeks offline took me through fury, despair, insanity, and finally into deep resignation. At that point the problem was suddenly fixed, and now I am jubilant, ecstatic, excited, whole.

The first month was down to our server, Gotalk (yes I will name names!). We called in the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman, the Gotalk Resolutions Team, our local member ... all to no avail. I'll spare you all the boring details of their dereliction of duty. They finally connected us on Feb 20th but didn't bother to tell us until we phoned yet again on 23rd. Then no-one could figure out why things weren't working our end. Finally a technician called in person to check things here - which had by then been checked many times by every other means - and, finding nothing wrong, went to the local exchange. As he thought, they had not yet got around to wiring us up, so he did that. In the process of which he found they had been going to connect us to a faulty wire – whenever they finally would have done it. So he changed that, and suddenly at 11.39 yesterday morning we were up and running. I told my writers' group in the afternoon that it was a measure of my great dedication to them that I actually showed up there instead of staying home to play on the net! As it was, Andrew and I were up till all hours catching up with voluminous correspondence. (Yes I have been able to use Neighbourhood Centre computers, but they are old and slow and much in demand, so it was very limited access.)

Whew! What a relief! Apart from feeling emotionally bereft without my online pals, it has been costing us a heap to use our landline instead of email, engin and Skype - not to mention the hours waiting in queues during the many calls to our server. Our bill jumped from an average of $80 per month to over $300 - and that's without downloads. Yes, we will be disputing it!

Well, there was one bonus from not being online. I'm now Secretary of the Neighbourhood Association, which involves sending files by email, amongst other things. When the Coordinator of the Neighbourhood Centre realised I didn't even have a flash drive (memory stick, for the uninitiated - of which I was one until recently) she arranged to get me one. 'There aren't many perks of your position,' she said, 'But this is one. We need our Secretary to have this piece of equipment.' And she got me one in a luvverly shade of magenta which of course matches everything I wear. It even has an attachment to clip onto my keyring. I feel flash all right!

Any'ow, apart from that we successfully moved, with much physical and financial help from loving friends and family. The new place is lovely! AND is lower rent. It has the same number of rooms but they are all smaller, so we have been doing a lot of what one pal calls de-materialising. The Op Shop has become used to us popping in every few days with yet another load of contributions. Nearly all the teddy bears have gone to bring joy to others, after all. The one I acquired first, which I actually bought new for myself some years ago – a very traditional, teddy-ish teddy – has been passed on to our new god-daughter, Flo, who was born 5 weeks early and is amazingly strong, present and calm, also beautiful. I have kept only the newest one, Snowy, who came from the same Op Shop a couple of months back ... partly because he was the smallest. (Also he is marked unsafe for children under 3 - but that's all right, I'm nearly 5.)

After the frantic effort to clean, pack and vacate the old place asap, we have been settling in here slowly - so no, there are no photos just yet. We're pretty right now, only a few more boxes of books to bring in from the garage. I devoutly hope to get them all on the shelves this weekend.

We have installed a cat door, which was not possible at the former home, and Levi and Freya love the new freedom. Like us, they seem to like the atmosphere in general much better than where we were.

I didn't want carpet but we have only a little, not at all offensive – and it's a Stainmaster! It's an easy-care sort of place, with a well-established native garden, also easy-care. There's a spacious patio area at the back, where we like to sit. Our neighbour is an artist about our vintage and a real sweetie with whom we discovered various friends in common. She has a boarder she's been trying to get rid of, who is apparently leaving soon, and her divorced son is staying with her until he finds a place. We like the son and don't warm to the boarder, but both blokes have been helpful in handyman ways during the move. We're even closer to the shops than we were. And we have now found the quickest and easiest way to get to the beach, after exploring all the other ways first. We love walking on the beach, and have been doing a lot of it.

Hope to catch up with everyone else's posts soonish.

Love and hugs to you all!


  1. Hooray! It's nice to see you back online. I sympathise with your recent Internet-less state - it's one of the hardest things about moving, I think... and yes, surprisingly expensive. Still, I'm glad the move went well and you are settling in to the new place. Welcome back!

  2. Hi Rosemary, I'm really pleased to hear that you are back in touch and that you are enjoying the new place. Love, Sue

  3. Many thanks to all of you for the welcome back!