Moving House

Today we went to visit Michael’s nana who had just moved from a bungalow to the nursing home due to a fall and consequent conclusions that she was unsafe to remain alone in a house.
It was interesting to see what a nursing home looked like here in the land of excess space but each room is no bigger than those back in the U.K but there is a large block of land adjoined to it. I also met Michael’s auntie Marg and Uncle Eddie who are John’s parents. Everyone, again without fail, was so welcoming to me.
The day’s events consisted of clearing out the bungalow and sorting through Michael’s boxed stuff. For me, it was great to see a fraction of each part of Michael’s life; cutie photos of him growing up and other bits and pieces, but I think he found it quite hard as his life in Australia ended up consisting of three medium sized boxes. Some stuff, mainly his birth certificate, school records and photos, he will bring back to England but a lot of it got thrown out as there was no longer a place to store it all.
Jeremy took a massive cactus type plant back from the bungalow to his house in the ute but it was a serious task getting it there in the first place! Michael, Ed, Jeremy and I heaved it around the back getting spiked all over. It must have been an amusing sight though!
Michael took me to see his old house in Sandgate, a large house set back from the road. It, or so I’ve heard, had a large swimming pool in the back garden which I get the impression is pretty standard in a house in Australia!! It is located about 10 minutes walk from the sea, which to me instantly makes it worth so much more. Maybe that’s just because I’ve never lived near the sea. He took me to Shawncliffe, which is a cute little village next to Sandgate. I say a village but both Sandgate and Shawncliffe are more like suburbs because they are directly next to each other, there is no long winding country road separating them like you would always see in Britain. Again, that’s probably because the suburbs are not nearly as old as the villages in Britain which began being small dwellings of certain clans of people before they became large enough to be called villages. Shawncliffe was very much like a British coastal village with the exception of the gloriously blue colour of the sea and the bright weather!
The only thing that concerned me was the shark nets, or the lack of them on one side of the pier but their presence on the other side. The presence of vicious animals in Australia has put me off visiting it for as long as I can remember. So the obvious presence of sharks scared me and I was even reluctant to walk along the pier past those nets. Of course I realise that the pier isn’t going to collapse and that it’s as impossibility that a shark would clamber out of the sea onto the pier and eat me alive. But it was still scary! – no comments please, only a foreigner would understand!
On our return to West End we promptly went to bed, exhausted from the day’s events. I proceeded to have nightmares about shark attacks!
-Nikkie

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