The Average Australian

It’s been a full schedule of meetings and gatherings since I’ve been in Australia. Christoph is back in the office while I’m in my final leg of this visit.

What struck Christoph and I on this trip was the fact that we are seeing so many different backgrounds and faces all mixed together. South African property agents, Pakistani taxi drivers, Sudanese Uber drivers, Indian retailers, Chinese bankers, German plumbers, Swedish waiters, Vietnamese beauticians... the list can go on and on. I’m certain we can find someone from almost every country on earth here but what is wonderful is that every one of them call Australia home :o)

Also, I finally have some photos from our time together in Perth and Sydney. Have a look in the Photo Gallery!

Western Australia’s South-West Region

Greetings from Karridale! Not a place many would know but a hint is that we’re not too far from Margaret River, WA’s premier wine region.

We’re tucked away in our forest accommodations for the next couple of days. 

We’re tucked away in our forest accommodations for the next couple of days. 

Christoph and I reunited in Perth almost a week ago and are currently down south exploring this fabulous region of Western Australia. There is a lot of beautiful coastline to see, beaches to swim at, wines to sip and coffees to enjoy. Also great hiking to be had but we’ll need to plan for that on our next extended visit.

I’ve been away from Perth most of my adult life and other than the handful of trips down south as a teenager, I haven’t had too many opportunities to fully enjoy what the area has to offer. So being here with Christoph and travelling through the area together has been magical. We plan to visit Hamelin Bay tomorrow to visit the wild stingrays... photos of our WA trip will come soon!

Busy Bee

I have been seriously missing in action! Half of March was spent back in a little town called Busselton, 250km south of Perth. Christoph and I had in December acquired house number 2 in Australia; an old brick house full of asbestos and bad taste from the 70s. We had our friend PM working on it for four weeks and I joined him for the last two weeks of the job to help with the finish.

The non-descript exterior.

The non-descript exterior.

The real beauty of the house lies in its plot size and location; 1023 sqm and a short stroll to the beach and two blocks to the main shopping/restaurant strip.

The famous Busselton Jetty. 

The famous Busselton Jetty. 

In my two weeks, I learnt to grout tiles, lay carpet, paint walls, ceilings and skirting boards and manage septic tank excavation work. You know, the usual household stuff.

Before and afters. 

Before and afters. 

Overall the house turned out well but just from looking at it, it's hard to tell what's been done. The house had a full overhaul with completely new plumbing, electrical wiring and comprehensive removal of asbestos throughout the entire property. We're happy with what was accomplished and now sit waiting for future tenants to move in :o)

Shanghai Calling

I'm finally back in Shanghai after a three-month hiatus. It didn't seem I was away for that long until I came back to our apartment and couldn't remember where I had placed things. It's also been three months since Christoph and I were in Shanghai together, now that does feel weird.

I ended up spending just over a month in Australia and loved being back 'home' for the summer. Christoph had two weeks for Chinese New Year and we spent it wisely; lots of sleeping-in for him, longs walks, yummy food and plenty of down-time in fresh air. Best of all, however, was spending time with family and friends in Perth, Sydney and the Gold Coast.

Top, lunch with the family in Perth, bottom, lunch with the family in Sydney.

Top, lunch with the family in Perth, bottom, lunch with the family in Sydney.

Being able to just go to the beach was heaven. Over the years, I've really started to miss the Australian beaches and so having the freedom to squish sand between my toes and to dive into fresh salty water felt divine!

Top left and clockwise: Dunsborough, Surfer's Paradise, Manly and Cabbage Tree Bay

Top left and clockwise: Dunsborough, Surfer's Paradise, Manly and Cabbage Tree Bay

I have about a month in Shanghai before I head back to Perth to check on a project there. I will fill you in on the details once I have the full picture. What's new in Shanghai is that we will move to an apartment three floors down from the one we're currently in. It'll be slightly bigger as Christoph was suffering somewhat from not having a home office last year, so we bit the bullet and decided to shift. I also get to benefit from the new arrangements by being the recipient of a bigger kitchen...yay! It'll be a small packing job next week and we'll move on Saturday but I can't wait!

And.... Happy Chinese New Year!

There have been so many occasions to celebrate this month and finally we recently had Chinese New Year! We wish all our friends and family the very best of health, love, luck and prosperity in the Year of the Rooster.

Enjoying the New Year celebrations in Perth.

Enjoying the New Year celebrations in Perth.

Christoph and I are now on the way to Sydney for a week. We'll catch up with two of my brothers who live there and I have the great responsibilty of delivering all the red packets from my family in Perth to my nephews and niece in Sydney :-)

Happy Australia Day!

We've been in Perth together for almost a week and today will be our first 40 degree day. Ugh! Other than the sudden high temperature, we've been having a great time. It's been a mix of catching up with family, friends and having time to ourselves to soak up the sun and enjoy a slower pace before we return to Shanghai.

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Cottesloe beach: you can't tell but it was extremely windy and slightly on the cool side that day. 

Most of my friends also turn 40 this year and so it's been wonderful spending time together and celebrating where our lives have taken us...and how we've managed to stay in touch! Happy Australia Day and happy getting ready for Chinese New Year!

Happy Days!

Greetings from Down Under! I'm in warm, sunny Perth and thoroughly enjoying my days in the sun :-) Christoph joins me tomorrow and we'll have two weeks in Australia; Perth and Sydney. It's Chinese New Year on Jan 28 and so it'll be good fun to be able to celebrate it with my family.

My stand-in breakfast companion until Christoph gets here ;-) 

I've also been dying to get to the beach and couldn't wait to jump into the ocean. However, it was most definitely a shock to the system as I've been away from Perth for so long that I forgot how cold the water is! Brrr! Christoph looks forward to not jumping into icy water but to soaking in some fabulous sunshine and indulging in many great Aussie breakfasts. Oh and he'll get to actually see the house that he owns now ;-)

By Popular Demand

At the time of my house post, I didn't think photos would be of interest but I guess I was terribly mistaken! It seems that so far, our tenants have settled in well with their dog but here are a few photos from house. These are the professional shots taken for the sale and I have to say that when I saw the house in person, it actually looked better than the photos make it out to be.

Top left and clockwise: front of the house, hallway, kitchen, backyard, living room, one of the three bedrooms. 

Top left and clockwise: front of the house, hallway, kitchen, backyard, living room, one of the three bedrooms. 

From the front of the house, it looks very unassuming... which is probably why I quite liked it :-)