Saturday, July 18, 2009


Our departure for Tassie is delayed for several weeks. My mother died on Friday night.

Thursday, July 2, 2009


Hi, I'm "She who must be obeyed", aka Sue.
Getting to the stage where we are now has been a long, very long process.
Paul of course, being the personality he is had big plans to build an ocean going yacht and sail from El Salvador to Australia. The fact that the only sailing we had ever done was in a 16 footer on a small lake in Honduras was not going to deter him.Plans were bought and a shed provided for the build.
In the meantime I just kept on smiling and nodding and browsing on a daily basis trying to figure where I could encourage Paul to live and where we could possibly afford.
Having never been too good at saving, travelling always eating up the money,I found Tasmania quite affordable[well I am going back 9 years].
Well they say persistence pays off and for 2 years I would drop handfuls -on -, purpose and after nearly 2 years while sitting out the backyard having our afternoon drinkies, Paul finally said"you know, I haven't given up on the idea of Tasmania".
Now folks, if you are in the same position as I was, make sure you have done your homework and are ready for action.
I grabbed Paul, whizzed him upstairs and pulled up a dozen properties I knew we could afford.With that we sat down and wrote to each of the agents.Once we make a decision we act fast, probably too fast on occassion but that's just us.
Anyway, 2 of the 12 agents answered by the next day and so having made the decision to buy we immediately chose one and called the agent.
Not being mindful of the time difference between El Salvador, we did have to get the guy out of the shower but hey, a sale is a sale.
Eager to buy, we were willing to buy sight- unseen but Chris, the best realestate agent ever, said he would hold all the blocks till we could get down to Tassie to view them.This was 6 weeks away and our eagerness was hard to contain.We had never been to Tasmania but it just felt right so we booked the flights and headed down there for a whole 36 hours.
Despite the guys dressed as Abba at the hotel we were staying, we fell in love with the place.

This is "she-who-must-be-obeyed," Sue, in Oaxaca, Mexico a few years ago. Anyone who can put up with me for 40-odd years (some of them, very odd!) has got to be wonderful.

Over the last few years, Sue has spent untold hours scouring the internet for bargains and ideas. She is one of the best-read people I know, and a fabulous librarian with an incredible knowledge of books for adolescents.

Preparations are under way

We are about to start the intimidating journey of owner-building and making some start towards self-sufficiency.
At present, we are in the Brisbane area and have been preoccupied since returning from El Salvador with getting the car repaired and buying a trailer for the journey. The car is in the garage, and due out tomorrow, and the trailer is being constructed. Lead time on the trailer is 2 weeks, so Sue will be spending her birthday with the kids here in Brisbane.
Spent about 3 hours last night looking over our houseplans with our son, Josh. The plans, by architect Peter Lees, look very thorough, but very intimidating to a more-or-less-retired English lit teacher. There are a few features of them that I would like to change, especially in regard to the stumps to support the floor. The plans call for massive concrete stumps and strip footings around the perimeter, but I would prefer timber on concrete pads. We'll see how it all works out.