« Doughboy | Main | Friendship – A True Tale »

Oz Musings: Home

Peter Clarkson and his wife Moira are planning a trip back to their homeland.

We look at the calendar and realise that time is quickly running by. It is now 15 months since we arrived on these shores from the UK. We have seen some family over here but really miss the contact with them and our friends.

It is about time we considered a trip back home to see everyone. The fact that none of my family are ever likely to come and visit us in this country makes the return home more important.

We have decided that we will return to the UK in July, flying out at the end of June and staying for three weeks. Moira is going to see if she can work in the UK for Oxfam while we are there.

Flights are just amazingly expensive, I didn’t care when we flew out here. After all the flights were one way and were paid for by Oxfam. Now this is my money and I have worked hard for it. We are determined to see our family and friends but $2,500 dollars each is a hell of a price!

The travel agent tells us for an additional $20 each we can have two days in Hong Kong. Now i am not one of those people who usually use a travel agent. I much prefer letting Moira search the internet and find the cheapest flights. Then she will book them and ensure the reservations are correct and we have all our itinery sorted. She even writes up a list of documents I have to bring with us, including passport and money.

This time though we thought we would leave the job to someone else and let a travel agent ease the stress usually caused by finding a flight three pounds cheaper than the first one you had thought of booking, then finding that both prices have gone up when you try to book.

Our agent has promised to check out accommodation in Hong Kong.

Another important issue is my passport which is due to expire in October this year. Australia does not allow people to travel on a passport with less than six months to run so I have to apply for a new passport. That presents another conundrum. My visa is on the old passport. I am not sure if it can be transferred to the new passport, and if it can how much it will ccost me to do so.

Still it will be nice to see everyone again. Internet contact and phone calls can only fill so much of the void left when you don’t have friends and family living down the road. However we are in a better situation by being able to Skype people, as well as using mobile phones, texting and Facebook to shrink the distance between us and our relatives and friends.

We've just enjoyed Labour Day weekend, another excuse for wily Aussies to get a day off work. Employees at Melbourne University demanded a day of eight hours for work, eight hours for play and eight hours of sleep, and downed tools until there was legislation to ensure this.

Nowadays this division of the working day is no longer adhered to. We all work longer hours and spend less time at home. We are missing out on sleep. I seem to be functioning on less sleep the older I get. After five or six hours of sleep I am fully refreshed.

Labour Day is now one of ten public holidays enjoyed in most Australian states. Ironically students at Melbourne U are not allowed off on Labour Day. As students they are not classed as workers.


Creative Commons License
This website is licensed under a Creative Commons License.