One year, four months ago I moved out of a place in Camperdown in Sydney to a more remote suburb called Narwee. If you don’t know where that is (and judging by the conversations I’ve had with many of you, nobody does), it’s a South-Western suburb of Sydney, best described as “Go south to the airport, then about as far west”. You could Google Maps it if you like. I’ll wait.
It was there that I moved in with a guy called Tim and basically rented a room and shared the house for $200. It suited me fine, as I spent quite a lot of that time in there writing a book. The trainline nearby got me into and out of the city every single day that I needed it, bar one or two times where somebody decided to fight one of the trains.
When I came back from Adelaide recently, Tim arrived back also and told me that he has a friend who he would like to move in and so he asked me (very nicely, might I add) to move out by the end of January. Fair enough, it’s his place. This was on the 28th of December.
So then I needed to find a place. If I stay until February this year, then it’ll be two years in Sydney. During that time, I’ve always heard Melbourne compared to Sydney favourably. Things like “Melbourne’s like Sydney, but with more fun”. It also helped a bit that my friend Tom (who I caught up with over Christmas) was suggesting that I should move to Melbourne as well so that we could hang out.
I was cooking dinner on the 29th and felt like I was doing nothing to further the situation. I needed to move out, but my weekend plans weren’t exactly conducive to that. So I thought “fuck it” and sent out a tweet asking if anyone had a place for me to (temporarily) stay in Melbourne.
Tom replied with a half-joking, half-indignant tweet that I should have messaged him first and asked if I could stay there. I sent him a message and he replied and said I could stay at his. The very next day I drove the ~900km down to Melbourne to stay at Tom’s house.
At that point, I had no fucking clue what I was doing in Melbourne. It was one of those spur-of-the-moment things. The drive flew by, thanks in part to the Hume Highway dual-carriageway upgrades and the most-excellent Back to Work podcast.
Then, I got to see Melbourne for the first non-going-through-in-a-bus-to-the-airport-for-railscamp time. This city reminds me so much of San Francisco, from the cafés, to the over-population of hipsters (which is a con, not a pro) to the amazing food and friendly people. Ross Hill actually wrote about these things, and I can totally agree with him. I’m actually writing this from Inspire9 right now!
I got to experience NYE in Melbourne with some great friends and all of those things combined are what sold me on Melbourne. So I’m moving there (which is “here” right now, but let’s not get technical).
I still had no fucking clue where I wanted to move, but at that point it had to be Melbourne. Some point after that, Tom and I are talking and he brings up that the guy who sold him his apartment (that he shares with two others) had another that he was looking to rent out also.
I got in touch with him, and he showed me the place. It is the best place I've ever had the pleasure of looking at. Wooden floorboards, a nice upstairs area, two bathrooms, four bedrooms (one will be used as a study / storage area), gas stove kitchen, nice patio, and so on.
On Friday, I looked it over again with two other prospective housemates and they both agreed that it was nice. One of them backed out due to how long it is out of town, and the other one doesn’t mind. So I told the agent that I would absolutely love to lease the property.
This morning, I went into the agent’s office, handed over the first month’s rent and signed the lease agreement.
I’ll be moving down and in on the 21st of January. See you around!