2021 has so far proven to be less than stunning. Thank you to all for the Christmas cards and best wishes for the new year but they clearly didn’t work so this Christmas please send money or petrol vouchers instead!
The year started with a heightened sense of anticipation, brought on by a decision to apply for an investment home loan. This was a direct result of the failure of our current “Plan A”, which was to buy lottery tickets, to secure Nigel’s early retirement.
We jumped through all the mandatory hoops (payslips, superannuation balances, customer information forms etc), secured a verbal approval for $400,000, made an offer and then subsequently – and humiliatingly – had to withdraw the offer when another bank officer (the manager went on leave) decided that she’d only lend us $300,000.
In a list of top ten humiliating life experiences, ringing an estate agent to withdraw an offer because we had $100,00 less than we thought we had is possibly up near the top so we were relieved when the manager returned from leave – until she got the bank’s ‘interest only’ rates totally wrong and again we had to withdraw an offer. Time for Plan C.
The next event in our roller coaster “if it can go wrong it will” ride, was when in March, the heavens opened and one Sydney Harbour’s worth of rain fell on the east coast – every day. Trenches were dug and palings were hastily removed before our backyard became a dam and then a quagmire but with the aid of some trusty brooms, we managed to divert the flood away from our cabin door if not the pool. Thank goodness we were there at the time.
While none of the above was actually our fault, this next comedy of errors was pretty much due to my decision to change something that really didn’t need changing. There was nothing actually wrong with the double bed in the Shack. It was a nice enough bed. It was just that the foot was so high that changing mattress protectors, sheets and the like was seriously hard work (I know….. first world problem). Plus, we could never turn the bed around because it just wouldn’t fit under the window, or more importantly, under the shutters and I’d been planning to get rid of it for a while.
Again, Plan A (buy a second hand bed on Facebook) fell apart. In my haste to secure a bed with a very low head and foot, I failed to consider questions like “what condition is it in?” even offering to pay in advance. I possibly should have been suspicious when the seller was nowhere to be seen (just his elderly grandmother) for the arranged pick up. Needless to say Plan B’s $180 bed and mattress, with its missing pieces of dowel, didn’t even make it upstairs and was on-sold the next day for $30. Thank goodness we still had the original bed!
Now those familiar with the ‘when it rains it pours’ philosophy will no doubt relate when I add that this was by no means our only problem of the ‘forty winks’ variety. It seems our queen bed decided to go out in sympathy, if not in style, by collapsing in the middle of the night, complete with sleeping tenants. Definitely not a good recommendation for future bookings but, thanks to our handyman, a new bedroom suite was sourced and has now replaced the broken bed.
In the mean time, Plan C (buy a nice shiny new double bed online that fits under the shutters and has a low bed end) was hatched, only to also come unstuck. After said handyman disassembled the original bed and assembled the new flat-packed bed (always fun) we stood back and realised the new, very low bed looked more like a child’s bed – backed up later by the tenant’s review – the beds were quite “squeaky and uncomfortable”. Great!
So here we are at Plan D, which will will see us travelling in a couple of weeks, from Cobar to Paradise via Newcastle, as you do, to pick up bed and mattress number 4 (also on Facebook)…… time will tell.
And just in case, our dilemmas haven’t elicited the appropriate sympathies and condolences, let me just say that a phone call from the handyman a few days ago has revealed that our living room blinds have collectively decided to fall apart because apparently they didn’t want to be taken down and cleaned. So we’re now waiting for the newly ordered blinds to arrive – hopefully before the next tenants do.