Leaving on a jet plane

As I write this, I’m lying in the spare bed in my friend Emma’s house in Tasmania.  I left Perth last night, without any degree of certainty regarding when I might return (I mean, yeah, the USA will boot me out after I finish my degree, but will I be back sometime during those three years?  It’s odd to leave a place – a place you’ve called home for so long, without really knowing when you’ll go back to it).

I have a week here in Tasmania with my Emmy before I fly to the USA.  This is good in many ways, in no small part due to spending a tremendous week somewhere new and fun with my best friend (who I haven’t seen in ageees!).  She and her mum picked me up at the airport, and her mum spent the car ride fussing over me, asking what I liked to eat and whether I needed anything and so on.  Emmy made sure the sheets on my bed were of an appropriate standard and gave me her electric blanket.  Their house is beautiful and, in fact, Launceston is beautiful.

Tasmania is sort of the ‘in joke’ of Australia.  We all periodically forget it exists (as Emma said, in the car on the way to her house “I live here, and I still forget it exists”) and like to make friendly jokes about how everybody here is an inbred backwoods hick.

In truth, Tasmania (or what I’ve seen of it so far) is beautiful.  Unlike the part of Australia I am from, which is all red dust and beaches and 100+ degree days (I’m switching to Fahrenheit to appease my American brethren), Tasmania has more in common with New Zealand, or England.  Everything is green and lush and pastoral.  We passed alpacas on the way from the airport!  ALPACAS!

The architecture is gorgeous, too – lots of historic buildings and my friend’s house was built in the 1890s.  It’s all high ceilings and wooden floorboards and an open fire in the lounge room.  She lives in this adorable basement room with fairy lights and a canopy bed and EVERY LIGHT IN THIS HOUSE HAS A DIMMER SWITCH.

Dimmer switches, I think, should be mandatory on all lights, ever.

Anyway, as wonderful as it is to be here it is strange to think that in a week I’ll be on a plane to the US, not knowing when I’ll return – and with very little idea of how to get myself sorted out once I get there.  I thought I had it all in check, but a few mishaps at the airport last night (baggage 6kg overweight, having to walk through the security scanner 285285 times because I kept beeping, dropping my samsung galaxy sII on the cold, unforgiving airport floors and cracking the screen) forced me to realise that, actually, maybe I’m not as prepared as I thought I was.  I have nowhere to live, therefore no permanent address to put down when I sign up for a bank account or a phone plan.  I now need to get a new phone because my screen is cracked.  I need to buy furniture, but first I need a house to put it in.  I need to apply for a social security number but I have to be in the country 10 days in order to do that.  Some banks require a social security number to sign up for an account, and most rental properties require proof of finance to get a lease, and you need a phone to make the calls to the landlords in order to view the apartments, but you can’t get a phone contract without proof of funds and a permanent address.  ARGH.

So right now I’m lying in my very very warm and snuggly bed slowly panicking, as well as already missing home.

The power is about to die on my laptop, so I’ll talk more later about my wonderful experiences in Perth town, the people I will love and miss, and how grateful I am to have had them (and still have them!) in my life.


1 Comment

  1. Emma
    Jul 19, 2012

    We all love having you here so freakin much!
    You’ve been here what? 2 days? And already I’m like ‘Oh my god no, Kia can’t leave! WHAT WILL I DO WITHOUT HER!’
    Now I’m extra determined to get better quick so I can come visit you ASAP because a life without Kia is a much shite-er one.

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