Friday, December 16, 2011

From surreal to real

For the past few weeks I've done little else but do stuff relating to the upcoming project, 52 Suburbs 
Around the World. I've been madly packing, sorting, tossing, cleaning - to get my apartment ready 
to rent out - at the same time as dismantling and unplugging our life in Sydney. I've spent hours working 
with the lovely people who are helping me design and create the new blog, finessing and fussing. 
And I've been organising Coco's distance education. It's all been about the project.

But until today the project itself has seemed very remote and surreal. Part of that is due to the fact
that I've been more anxious than excited to be honest. For so long it was about just trying to get
the project up that I never questioned whether or not I could do it. But ever since I got enough
funding to get the project up, albeit on a skinny shoe-string budget, I've started to question,
can I actually do this? 

Because not only is it going to be a very time and labour intensive project. It'll also be done on the
road. And I'll be doing it with my eight year old daughter at my hip. Coco occasionally used to 
accompany me out to the suburbs in the first project. But only for a couple of hours every so often.
This will be 365 days worth of accompanying! 

And not only that, I'm going to be home schooling her at the same time. I used to say quite breezily,
oh, Coco, she'll be doing distance education. What I discovered when we went to the orientation
day at Sydney Distance Education Public School is that we will be doing distance education. While I'm
technically called the 'Supervisor' and there are real teachers at the school, the reality is that I'm
expected to sit with her and teach her for four hours a day. That to me is home schooling, something
I've always greatly respected in other people but never thought I could do myself. 

So. Ha! There it is. All the ammunition my brain needs to wake me at 3am and remind me that I'm
going to attempt to do a project that took me six days a week the first time around, at the same time
as navigating seven new cities and spending 20 hours a week home schooling, unless of course
one or other or both of us come down with some exotic illness and then, well, I'm not quite sure. 
Shambolic comes to mind.

When I sat down to post today I didn't intend to share all this. But I'd hate you to think I've been 

wandering around in a pre-trip state of bliss, just waiting until the 30th of December rolls around.

Oh, and while I'm at it, I've also gone into a decline about leaving Tom and Jinx. Now when I say 
that Tom and Jinx are cats, well, that's not really true. They're Burmese and being Burmese,
they are more like dogs than cats. So in essence we're leaving our two dogs behind - and because
they don't understand English, I'm unable to tell them that we love them very much and have done
since they arrived as tiny kittens two years ago, and we're not abandoning them really and we'll be 
back before they know it.

All they're going to think is that they've been dumped. Too sad. 

But today, finally, all the endless packing has finished and we are now officially living out of a 
suitcase: the tenants move in tomorrow morning so we're off to stay with friends for two weeks
until we go. On the way we'll drop Tom and Jinx off to their new home, some dear friends of ours,
and pray that they don't try and escape.

So although I'll be a basket-case saying goodbye to the cats (and friends and family of course),
suddenly the whole thing has moved from surreal to very real. And finally I feel less anxious
and more excited.

I also needed to post today because this is the last day I'll be posting on this blog from the computer
and room that I began 52 Suburbs on just over two years ago. It's been an amazing couple of years
and for anyone who's been following for a while or since the very start, can I just say a huge 
thank you for coming along for the ride and contributing to the project along the way.

The upshot is that I'm pretty sure the next time I post will be on the new blog so this will probably

be the last post ever on 52 Suburbs. Before we bid it farewell, can I just explain that the new blog
URL will be the same as this old one - And then this blog will have a new URL,

Reason being, it was too long to have the new blog address be, 

so we've decided to keep it short and just change this blog's URL.

Anyway, no need to absorb those fascinating facts as you'll be automatically transferred over to

the new blog unless you tell me otherwise.

So see you over there in the next week or so!

And I promise, this will be the last essay of a post. Back to brevity next time we meet.