To start the year I lived in a house that was famous in the Katherine region for being flooded in January 2012. The damage the abode received made the house uninhabitable by paying renters... so it was filled with workers instead. I was lucky enough to be given a room with air conditioning, better yet, electricity full stop. The only place to cook was a barbeque so I ate all my food raw and went on a health kick diet in an effort to lose the Christmas weight. It worked by the way. Every night I braced myself for a cold shower because the hot water service was out of action. One of the air conditioners that did work had a fierce leak and alot of my stuff got wet till I realised and moved it all to a better location.
When my work at that place finished I shifted on to the next. Here I was put into a leaky caravan with only half of its windows in place. If it rained I was guaranteed that my stuff got soaked. The shower was a piece of poly pipe surrounded by a tarp (I was constantly petrified that I was being perved on) and the toilet was a hole in the ground. I felt like I was back out at camp again, miles from the station and even more miles from the nearest bit of civilisation but alas I was only 40 kilometres out of Katherine.
Before shifting to this place I tried in vain to find proper accommodation but there was nothing in my price range or locality. I was so devastated and miserable the second time my stuff got rained on I was determined that word-of-mouth and real estate agents were not good enough and that it was time to start baling people up. So I did. But my multitude of text messages were ignored. I drove down Florina Road looking at all the driveways I passed thinking "I could try this person, I could try that person, I could try those people". I sent out one more text after I passed a particular driveway. My last hope before driving into strangers properties requesting accommodation. The response to my text was immediate and that afternoon I checked out the granny-flat on offer.
"It's yours whenever you want to move in". I was so ecstatic to have found somewhere decent to live but I did my best to keep my cool and not act like a total idiot.
Later that week I loaded the horse float with the help of a backpacker and moved in. I decked out the bathroom with a pink shower curtain, a pink hand towel and pink bath mats but not before treating almost the entire room with a good dose of hydrochloric acid with the help of my new landlord. That crap is a bit potent when combined with a migraine. I made the kitchen all... kitcheny. I brought in my microwave and fridge and a few utensils, crockery and cutlery. Later on I bought some cheap plastic drawers to brighten up the room and store half that stuff in. But the piece-de-resistance of homeliness was the living area. To be able to unpack all the things I'd been wanting to unpack! And I didn't care that by the end of the year I would probably be packing them right up again.
The decorating began. My Celtic pentagram throw got weakly stitched to act as a curtain. The borrowed tallboy got smothered in soft toys as did my bed. A step-ladder got transformed into a shelf adorned with photos of Charger and Chief (horses of course) and a wooden vase with fake flowers. My worse-for-wear lamp took its place on the bedside drawers. A photographers works got hung on the only hook I could find in the besa-brick walls. A wind chime, a mini dream-catcher and some now defunct fairy lights got hung on the empty curtain rod above my bed. My rug got rolled out and meticulously vacuumed to warm a temporarily void space. Everything else got tucked under the bed or hidden around corners in neat stacks. I have made the place a home, scaring males with the description of the bathroom. "I think the house just shifted two feet away from the granny flat" was the son of the landlords' response to the pink decor.
With the only working ceiling fan going flat-gallop and the rain pattering down on the roof, for the first time in nearly a year I can feel settled in my unsettled life if for only a few months. It's gonna be worth it.