The Unreal Estate of New Farm: life shattering and life changing

Intimations of Mortality

A very sobering reality check hits when an old school friend dies. A precious person of the same vintage from the Yeronga tribe, has shocked us all by slipping away, bravely and with such dignity. Helen Heathwood (Bickley) was much loved by family and friends, and she was also a dedicated activist, caring passionately about refugees, the environment and other social justice issues.  Several of the women from the Yeronga group who meet a few times every year, hugged each other close at her funeral, aware that we are now all of an age when, with great sorrow, this will probably happen more regularly. One of these dear old friends urged me to get back to writing my blog – it’s been about 6 months- so here it is

The sad loss of an old school friend, dear Helen

Moving On…

It’s often said that moving house is almost as stressful as divorce or death. Certainly it can be very fullon, and even life changing. Decluttering and downsizing are the buzz words of the new movers and shakers out there, and a plethora of self-help books are on offer- to clutter up the bookshelves even more, and probably to make the poor distressed reader feel pretty inadequate and even more stressed.

I found these particular D words quite threatening and difficult to wrestle with. I’m not going to pontificate here in this a blog about the D’s, although one kind person suggested  I could perhaps set myself up in the future as a Decluttering Whisperer. I guess there is a point somewhere there – if an untidy hoarder like me can (sort of) successfully declutter and downsize, then I may have some useful tips and skills to pass on to the downtrodden, hesitant person, pondering whether to downsize or not, and just where to start.

At one stage in the saga I was offered decluttering help for $200 a day by a woman I know. I politely declined to employ her, and soldiered on, ultimately getting by, thankfully, ‘with a little help from my friends’…

Over many months, my life flashed repeatedly before my eyes as I shuffled and sifted through endless books, dvds, videos, cds, papers, letters, cards, memorabilia, ephemera – jagged shards of a multifaceted mirror, reflecting, distorting who I am now, who I was then. Clothes, jewellery, accessories, shoes, bric a brac – so much stuff, hard to let go.

Some of the rescued keepsakes telling a fragmented story of a life

A moving collage

Casa del Rio – 1930’s Art Deco.

25 years of lounge room memories

Farewelling my piano – played this beauty since I was 5.

Farewell Casa del Rio. Another delightful bedroom view awaits at Glenfalloch.

The dream team from Belle – Ivo & Isa

Celebrating the end of an era with Jane and George who now own my piano

Packing magic

Moving On Up – Glenfalloch 13th floor

In 2 days’ time I will own my unit in Glenfalloch. In about 3 weeks I will be fully settled there. The visuals above are a kind of storyboard depicting how the move has unfolded and the haunting feeling of an unreal (to me) real estate world. Today I was involved with the pre-settlement inspection.  Yesterday I saw my lawyer and also struggled with my insurance.

Thanks to the dream team from Belle New Farm, I’m still standing.

To be continued….

5 thoughts on “The Unreal Estate of New Farm: life shattering and life changing

  1. Dear Helen, We were sorry to hear of the loss of your school friend. It is sobering to know we are now entering the next stage of our lives, which of course often makes ‘the big move’ necessary. Bruce and I were so pleased to hear, via Vivienne, that you have successfully bought a Unit at Glenfalloch. Well done. We both wish you much happiness settling into your new home. We are leaving Mary Jane and family at Abu Dhabi tomorrow evening, so will be home on the weekend, and hopefully will catch up soon. All the best, and sending love, Bruce and Helen. Sent from my iPad


  2. Dear Helen – I am so pleased that you have found another home that you like. Being so near where you have always been, which is fortunate – you probably will find no change in your routines – the move will be accordingly be not real expensive (I guess). You won’t know yourself with the lift!!

    Lots of love


  3. Dear Helen
    SO glad it is all working out and that your new place sounds good. I am also a hoarder so I read with interest that one can eventually declutter, not that I am actually planning to move, but decluttering would still be a good idea for me! All the best in your new place

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