Ella has been accepted at the local Kindergarten

Ella has been accepted at the Kindergarten in our Neighborhood!  This is fantastic news, because it has been a long process.

First, we found out late that we all kindergartens are managed by the State, and as such, require a detailed application form.  This, however, turned out to be easy for us; you could say we are professional form submitters at this point.  In fact, we were complemented on having the form filled in so completely, and on time (most people are late, or submit incomplete forms, and the system is designed such that they get feedback on what is missing, and a chance to correct mistakes.)

The admission is based on points; you get points for various things, such as your marital status, your family status and so on.   Points are also awarded based on where you live, which is good, since that is the only thing we got points for.

Then, all the submissions are collated, and The List is posted.   The List tells you where you are in descending points order on the waiting list.  There are only so many positions in each school.

We missed out by 6 places.

We were very disappointed, but made sure to keep in contact with the Principal of the kindergarten.   She is a very nice lady, known to all the parents in the complex, and she helped us through the entire process.

She informed us that what would happen next is a round of appeal, and then a final version of The List is released.  Then, the accepted children have a week or so to pay the fee, and after that, one more final version of The List is released, as well as another list which tells you where else you may apply to send your child.

The Principle told us to not panic, and that “Things may still go in your favour”.

Well, we found out late last week that they have indeed gone in our favour.  A couple days after we attended the End of Year Concert for the Kindergarten (which was fun, funny and sureal) the Principal called and said that she would create an extra place for us.

So now we can relax until September, which is when school starts.

Second Breakfast

We have started referring to the snack at around 10 or 10:30 as second breakfast.  Not to be confused with elevenses, this is the little meal you have at work with your first coffee.

You can see this happening everywhere, and the term “second breakfast” is very convenient.  At the old building, there was a very good little Cerveceria in the ground floor, where you could get tostado con tomate, aciete y jamon.

Nowadays, this consists of people cramming into little vending machine vestibule and having a sandwich brought from home.  And when one of the two vending machines is broken, it’s best to avoid this time due to the lines.

7am is too early

There are a few of us at the moment working very hard on a proposal.    I worked all weekend, and I was at the office at 7am this morning, because it is due today.

The security guard wouldn’t let me in.  He said because I don’t have an access card yet, he cant let me in until 8am.  Forgetting the obvious question (“Gee Jake, you’ve been there a few months now, why don’t you have an access card?”), the real question is why can’t you let me in until 8am?  And what am I supposed to do until then?

I was pretty pissed.  But I was also (and still am) quite tired due to all the overtime and so on.   So let me ask you, does it make any sense to you?  If he can let me in at 8am without a card, why cant he let me in at 7am without a card? I guess I’ll have to wait an hour before I do all my stealing.

Anyway, all I did was walk down the car ramp into the carpark, and tailgate someone in through the security barriers down there. Yeah, heaps secure.

Still going to Spain

We are still going to Spain, but it is taking longer than we thought.

The bureaucracy deepens, and we were hit with further paperwork requirements while we were in Calgary. Unfortunately, these are going to take a ridiculously long time to fulfill.

The Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade have only one office that can authenticate a document. This is the act of stamping a document with an official seal that says that the notarisation of the document is legit. If you take the document to them in person, they can do it while you wait, otherwise you mail it to them and it will take 5 weeks, plus postage time.

Oh, but it doesn’t cost anything. Except if you are in a hurry, then it will cost you a flight and a hotel room.

Relocation to Spain: Its On. Finally.

After a few false starts, and much waiting, I am finally announcing that we are relocating to Seville, Spain.

I will say now though, that until I have actually arrived and signed a rental agreement, I’m not going to guarantee anything, but I’m putting out the good vibes.

We sold the fridge today, and that makes it real. We fly out of Perth on July 10, an over night stopover in Singapore, a 2-3 day stopover in Hong Kong, and then on to Vancouver, where we hope to meet up with friends for a night or too. Then on to Calgary.

We will stay there about 6-8 weeks, and I will work half of that time, the other half will be vacation.

Then, around the end of August, I will go to Seville ahead of Lisa and get started on the basics.

FAQ answers

  • Work is paying for the move
  • We don’t yet have a place to stay in Seville
  • I got a promotion, which needs to be done from Seville
  • The relocation is for 3 years
  • We have no idea where we will live after that
  • Yes, we loved Perth, and will leave many good friends behind
  • Yes, you are all welcome to visit in Seville. We are purposely going to get a place with a guest bedroom

Right then. Back to cleaning and packing!

Whirlwind update

Yeah – not like there hasn't been like a million things happen since the last entry.

The following are roughly in chronological order

  • My Grandfather turned 90 and we all had a party for him
  • My family converged on Calgary for this party
  • We went up to the cabin in the Shuswaps and had a great time
  • Mum and Dad went to Vernon to visit old friends Mike and Jane
  • Lisa and I cut short our trip to Vancouver and Nelson to help with transport back from Vernon
  • She returns to Oman and prepares to return to Adelaide
  • The trip to Cuba goes haywire when the company threatens not to send Lisa to Cuba with me
  • The company's policy changes to reflect my demands
  • Since I am scheduled to be in Spain for the Factory Acceptance Testing for the Cuban project, I am asked to perform a demonstration to a prospective customer while I am there
  • The demonstration is actually a certification so that our company can be on the approved vendor list so that we might bid for the upcoming upgrade project
  • The customers are Saudi Aramco, and the upgrade project could be the single biggest project my company has ever done.
  • There is not a single backup of the previous demonstration system used for the previous certification
  • We have 2 weeks to have the system operational, and at that point there is no hardware or RTUs to use
  • I plan to arrive in Spain Saturday August 12th.
  • Mum's cardiologist scheduled valve replacement surgery for Monday August 21st.
  • I make the decision to still go to Spain, and then Lisa and I will go to Adelaide.
  • A friend at work asks me if he should forward my name to a company in Australia that is currently hiring.
  • I say sure.
  • The company from Australia call me and we have a preliminary interview on the phone.
  • We leave to Spain the next day.
  • First day in Spain, I get a head cold that knocks me flat the whole day.
  • Lisa explores Madrid, and visits the museums and parks.
  • The hardware doesn't arrive until the night of Friday August 18th. The demonstration is supposed to start Monday August 21st.
  • Lisa and I leave Spain for Adelaide Saturday August 19th.
  • Mum is admitted into Ashford Sunday August 20th.
  • Lisa and I arrive in Adelaide Monday August 21st.
  • Mum emerges from surgery later that day, and from then until now is on a steady path of recovery.
  • I call the company in Melbourne and inform them that since I'm here, maybe we cold set up an interview.
  • They agree.
  • Lisa and I travel to Melbourne Monday August 28th.
  • The interview on Tuesday goes very well, they ask me to come back the next day.
  • They offer me the job in Perth.
  • Lisa and I deliberate for about half an hour.
  • We decide to take the job in Perth.
  • I sign papers and shake hands and walk out the door as an employee of Tusc.
  • We return to Adelaide 2 hours later, and break the news.

That's about it so far. We left Adelaide on Sunday September 3rd, overnight-ed in Singapore then arrived in Calgary Tuesday September 4th.

I tendered my resignation today. Now it's gonna start getting interesting.

Cuba? Turkey? Spain? Germany? Who the fuck knows!

so, just to make things more fucked up, looks like I am going to Spain, around Aug14, and probably be there for about 5 or 6 weeks.

I have to be in Madrid Sept1 (give or take), and it might be that I'm in Turkey for 2 weeks before all this.

so, it will be Turkey (aug1-aug13) Spain (aug14-sep??) then cuba.

and lisa will be with me the whole time! thats cool.

there is a very slim possibility that we could drop in on glen in croatia sometime in there, but we will have mega luggage with us, unless we can stash it somewhere….

talk about a head fuck hey? I am trying to move out of the apartment at the same time, which involves satisfying the nazi landlords (e.g. having documentary proof in the form of a receipt, that we had the carpets professionally cleaned)