Winning in Wynnum

15 May

We got off the plane afte 8 long, tv-less hours as we were flying AirAsia and when they opened the doors our immediate thought was ‘they’ve accidentally taken us to London’ as it was so cold! The pilot said it was 19 degrees at 8pm which didn’t sound that cold, but when you’re used to temperatures in the 40s it was a bit of a shock. Australia is coming into their winter now so we will have to go and get jumpers and jeans as we’ve only got summer clothes here.

Once we’d eventually got through the tedious customs procedure, our friend Daniel met us off the plane and took us to his mum and dad’s house for dinner as it was pretty late and we’d had Mcdonald’s for breakfast so it seemed a bit wrong to round off the day the way we’d started with more junk. We had a lovely meal there and our first proper Aussie beer and then went to my stepdad’s house in Wynnum where we will be staying until we get jobs etc.

As we had landed in the night, the next morning we got up and walked around to get a feel of our new temporary home. It was sunny but cold in the shade – such a nice change! We walked up to the shopping centre to get some food and ended up spending $115 on all the exciting new food there (Milky Ways here don’t contain that weird fluffy white stuff ours do, they have caramel in them! I will have one of those! They have chillies that are ball-shaped! I will have three of those! They don’t have Marmite – they have Vegemite! Avoid!). This is why we are rubbish at budgeting, we get far too enthusiastic about food.

We dragged all our shopping home again with us and I cooked for the first time in forever which was a delight. We made friends with Winchester and sat in the sun for a bit. Craig went off to get a couple of beers for us and ended up walking for miles because you have to go to special beer shops here rather than just the newsagents so I got to cook again whilst he was foraging. We gorged on pasta and Australian Masterchef and adverts – they’re so direct here. They don’t mince their words: there’s a festival just called ‘Beef 2012′, an advert for Rivers’ jackets which basically says ‘Nice jacket for sale at Rivers: $22. If you want a nice $22 jacket, go to Rivers’ and newsreaders who describe a woman being attacked as ‘They bashed her on the head’ :D

Today we were in efficiency mode after months of wandering around looking at things, taking pictures of things and losing things. We went food shopping again (ahem) and then did all but one of the steps to become an actual Australian:

  • Went to the bank to get an account each – unlike in England where you need to give them your finger prints, mother’s maiden name and a blood sample, all they needed was our passports. It took less than an hour and we got passwords for the internet banking on the spot, just waiting for our cards to be sent (they even let you choose your own pin online!). Amazingly quick and friendly service. Craig didn’t have a bank account back in the UK as he was paid in cash so he is a step further to becoming a normal human being.
  • Went to get a video rental card – with our new bank’s letter and passport we were signed up immediately and got a rent one, get one free card and a loyalty card. And our first dvd free. Take that Blockbuster!
  • Got a grocery store loyalty card – free airmiles, yay.
  • Bought a new phone each – their pay as you go system makes so much sense. You top up with a minimum amount each month, and they give you $250 worth of credit to call or text anyone in Australia or abroad – brilliant – and an amount of free data. Free talk and text to Aussie numbers between 6pm and 6am :)
  • Applied for a tax number online (took 2 mins – HMRC you have a lot to learn!).
  • Entered a competition to win a car – transport for the year sorted.

Just need our medicare sorting out and then we are 100% certified Australians. I am pretty sure that’s how it works.


2 Responses to “Winning in Wynnum”

  1. Carol & Mark 2 June 2012 at 9:28 am #

    Well done with the pampered pup seems you are having a ball. Keep on drinking

    • toaustraliathelongway 2 June 2012 at 10:28 am #

      We’re having a great time thanks but back to reality on Monday as Craig’s got an induction course and after that it’s the world of work again! Hope you, Mark, Pops and the cats are good, just sent you an email xxxx

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