Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Arriving in Melbourne

I think I could very easily say that this week has been one of the most stressful of my life. Trying to sort my belongings into two suitcases and hand luggage seemed an impossible task, and very nearly ended in a hefty oversized baggage charge; fortunately the kind lady at the baggage drop-off let me off the charges as I was only 3kg over when my luggage weights were combined. 

Earlier this week I got asked to send more information for my AHPRA application, as well as complete another police check for my visa application. It has seemed like a constant (and never ending) stream of requests for further information and payments, but at long last I have arrived. 

Not only has this week been pretty high on the scale of stressful events, it has also been an absolute rollercoaster of emotions, mostly sadness and worry accompanied by streams of tears. I am overwhelmed by thoughts of all the things and people I will miss and struggled to say goodbye to (mum and dad especially!), and at the moment am struggling to focus on the positives, but hope that in a few weeks that may change. I recognise that it may take quite some time to settle in, and am prepared for more tears!

Following my Saturday night 21:55 flight from Heathrow to Hong Kong, my connecting flight to Melbourne landed at 07:20 this  morning. It wasn’t all plain sailing as I was so distracted by how upset I felt, that I went through security at Heathrow and all the way through duty free before realising I had left my cabin bag behind. Fortunately when I ran back it was still there, although I had visions of the bomb squad being out to reports of ‘unattended baggage’!

I managed to sleep a fair amount on the first flight, thanks to having a window seat, however the second flight from Hong Kong to Melbourne - not so much. By the time we landed I was pleased to be back on land, although rather panicked when my suitcases were the last to arrive. Funnily enough, the exact same thing happened the last time I was in Australia!

I have booked two weeks to stay at a homely Air BnB in the suburbs, in a little town called Macleod. A sleepy little place which will hopefully allow me plenty of time to unwind, get over the jetlag, and find my bearings. I hope to see these two weeks as a holiday to unwind from the stress of the last few weeks, and will take a few trips into the Central Business District (CBD) in order to set up my bank account, enrol in Medicare, and familiarise myself with the area. No doubt I will have to buy all of the things I have likely forgotten - or haven’t had time - to pack. I have various things to sort out, such as getting a new phone contract, sorting out my tax file number, and finding a new gym, so hopefully I should have enough to keep me busy. 

I arrived to rain and wind, not exactly the weather that people envisage when they think of Australia! I had considered trying to get an Uber, or tackle public transport, but thanks to the weather, my tiredness, and the amount of luggage I had, I decided to take the hit and pay $61 for a taxi to Macleod, where my Air BnB is.  Monday was spent in a cycle of sleep, wake, read, sleep, wake, read. I had hoped to get out to the shops to pick up some food, but given that it was dark when I finally woke in a functional state, I decided to just go back to bed hungry and get on with things in the morning. That didn’t quite go to plan when I woke up at 17:00 today! I obviously needed the sleep, so I am not going to be hard on myself for wasting a day. I walked to the nearest supermarket, which was about a 25-minute walk, and had a slow wander around the neighbourhood. Macleod seems like a lovely, safe, suburban area, and I’m looking forward to exploring it in the daytime and finding a running route.    

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