After what seems like forever, all the proper paperwork was generated and submitted to the Australian Immigration folks and they very quickly granted Jim (and me) 457 visas!! This is the good news we’ve been waiting for!
We have plane tickets for April 11 and are now counting down the days until our adventure begins. Our air shipment will be packed up early during the week we leave and then will be delivered to us a few days after we arrive ( if the customs inspection and quarantine period go as planned.)
After reviewing 8 different apartment building websites, we have selected the one where we want to live and our relocation specialist (in Singapore!) has secured us a one-bedroom apartment in this building.
Corey was home this weekend and it was great to see him and when we said good bye to him we said, “See you in Australia!” He will probably be coming for a visit later in the summer (USA’s summer). Tucker and Alison will probably be making a trip to visit us and Australia at the end of May into early June. We are thrilled that they are going to be able to come Down Under to see us!
We have a few other friends and family planning to keep us company during our AU stay so we will have to get our feet on the ground quickly and get as familiar with Melbourne as we can in a short time. I am looking forward to being a tour guide for all of our visitors!
So stay tuned as we creep closer to our departure date.
P.S. I find it a little ironic that the name Australia has the word “trail” in it, since we were supposed to be hiking on the Appalachian Trail right now, instead of getting ready to go to Australia!
Well, our departure date has been pushed out until the first part of April, maybe around April 11th. Jim needs to have a “working” visa (457 visa) for our time in Australia, which takes 4-6 weeks to get. We thought we may have been leaving sooner, with Jim going in on another type of visa, until his 457 was approved, but that plan proved to have too many issues, so meetings were postponed until mid-April and we are properly working our way through the 457 visa system.
We continue to read about Australia, and Melbourne in particular and we are keenly aware of references to Australia in the news and on TV. As a fan of the Ellen Show on TV, I have been paying very close attention because back in January, she announced she was taking her show Down Under in March. For awhile it looked like we would be going to Melbourne around the same time as she was there! Now I look forward to her shows from Sydney and Melbourne as a sneek-peak at what is in store for us!
By leaving a month later than originally thought, we are able to better ready our house for our house-sitter. Hopefully, it will be more spring-like here when we leave, than winter-like so we don’t have to make sure our house-sitter knows how to run our snow blower and how to keep the kitchen sink pipes from freezing in really cold weather! We may even get some yard work in and a couple of screens up in the porch!
My entries here will not be too regular until we get closer to our departure time, so check back, but don’t give-up if there is nothing new for a bit.
Our own Australian Flag from our going-away party!
We still don’t have our exact departure date, but it looks like we will be leaving sooner rather than later. We expect to be in Melbourne by March 18th because Jim is expected at a meeting in Melbourne on that day! Stay tuned for the countdown to the beginning of our adventure.
Last night we were invited to friends’ house for dinner. When we arrived we discovered a room full of our friends, there for a going-away party for us!! It was a wonderful evening, including good food, great friends and Australia-themed decorations! We came home feeling a bit sad about leaving all these friends, but knowing that their love will stretch Down Under.
Yesterday Jim packed up our bikes in 2 boxes that I got from a very generous local bike shop. We hope to do some of our Melbourne sight-seeing from the saddles of our bikes! We have piles of clothes and biking gear and camping gear. It is hard to know how much stuff we will need for 5 months. As I use things around the house, I look at them and wonder if it is something that I might need or want in Australia.
As a knitter, I already have an assortment of knitting needles packed and will look forward to getting some nice Australian wool to knit. I hope to find a knitting group fairly soon after arriving as I think in addition to meeting knitters, they may also help me get answers to all the questions I’m sure to have!
Time to pack up some stuff. Thanks for reading our blog.