As adventures go, moving to Australia was a big one.
Packing up your life into boxes, hurling them into the great void (or just getting professional and reliable movers to ship them to the other side of the world), as well as applying for visas, getting various checks and the actual moving.
It was about four years ago that a flat in London’s Docklands was packed into boxes, cleaned and emptied. Three and a half years ago that I arrived in Australia.
It’s fitting, then, that I have relocated again. A really big relocation. A move from one suburb to about 5 minutes down the road.
The thing is, whether you’re relocating from England to Australia, or from North Perth to Joondanna, some things aren’t all that different.
Space to Move
First, you have to find somewhere to live. You can’t move if you don’t have somewhere to move to. That’s like a Newtonian law of physics. Or the universe. Or something.
Living in Perth, post-mining boom, we’re pretty lucky. Unlike Sydney and Melbourne, rent is affordable here and renters are in a better position than owners.
Finding a place to live in London involved a kind of pantomime. You enquire after properties, get told they had been let already, and end up somewhere completely different.
In Perth, things seem a lot easier these days (I missed the mining boom, and understand it was a different story in that period.) You visit the website of letting agents and find places you want to live. You view it, apply for it, get accepted almost right away, and that’s kind of it.
Bodies, Rest and Motion
I figure if we’re going to start claiming moving house to be some kind of Newtonian deal, I might as well use related subheadings.
A place to live was surprisingly easy to find. Finding a reliable removalist turned out to be just as painless. I used the OneFlare website to get quotes and info from local businesses, and they weren’t unreasonable.
However, comparing reviews online I found a different removalist that prides itself on being different to most. WA Transition Removals describe themselves as “more than just a removalist” — and right away I found they weren’t what you’d expect.
In my correspondence with the owner, John, he made suggestions and told me what to check with other quotes. He didn’t tell me anyone was wrong, or promise to beat any other quote I had. Instead, he offered advice. I quickly knew that this was the right company for my move.
Included in the service wasn’t just removal, or using the right size vehicle for the job, but also full disassembly and reinstallation of furniture and white goods, together with a code of conduct, from focused, smart moving, and respectful employees with a great attitude.
The Day Itself
As these things go, moving day came up on me all too quickly.
Ryan and Tim from WA Transition Removals arrive as expected at 10am, and by 1pm everything is taken apart, packed, loaded, moved, unloaded, reassembled and reconnected in my new place.
What’s more, they were everything promised. They had a reputation to uphold, and I hadn’t expected to be surprised — of course they would be helpful and hard working, all the rest. But they really went above and beyond.
When I left around 12pm so I could go fetch my cat from the vet’s, and the trip took longer than I expected, I wasn’t worried. I knew that everything was in safe hands, and it’s not often you happily leave two strangers you just met with all your worldly belongings and your new house.
Some little things go that extra mile. Ryan pointed out after they connected the washing machine that one of the taps needed a plumber to come out. It wasn’t his problem if my washing machine worked. Just the same, he didn’t just leave it at he’d moved it and connected it.
Together Tim and Ryan offered advice on furniture if I wasn’t sure where to put it. Then, when they unloaded a large, bulky wardrobe that I confessed I didn’t even want, they cheerfully offered to just take it away. No charge, no fuss, and no drama that they had just unloaded it from the van.
Everything was done with good humour and professionalism, but working quickly and efficiently, and every minute I was so glad I had them helping.
Seriously, if you are moving a 5 minute drive down the road to the next suburb, or if you are moving across the country, these are the people you want helping.
In a New Place
And now here I am. in a new place.
I’m no longer able to guess what time it is from the volume of the traffic outside the window, I am now woken up by strange and unfamiliar noises — people walking past outside, or the sound of the garden reticulation turning on.
The adventure continues…