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The man with the plan

Posted by on February 12, 2012

The man with the plan was always named Dan, and he lived in a tan van. Those of you who watched Sesame Street know this. However, there isn’t a man with a plan in my life at the moment.

Today was our 17th wedding anniversary, and the family took advantage of the extra day in Launceston to walk up to the Gorge and back.



Lis and I also took the walk to reflect on things, and I thought some of what we discussed might be of interest.

We both talked about how much we like our “Tamar gypsy” lifestyle. We wander up to Launceston when required, but mostly meander about down at West Arm, with weekly shopping trips over to Georgetown.

The kids are enjoying the camp cooking on the beach, the swimming off the boat on hot days, and (I think) the time they get to spend with their parents.


Homeschooling is finally gathering steam, and the kids are doing well. We have registered with the homeschooling people called THEAC, and adopted a classical curriculum to teach the boys. We drew up a timetable and have allowances for travel days and times when we need to concentrate on what they are having the most trouble with… There’s quite a lot of work Lis has put into it, so I’ll go into it in a bit more detail in another blog post.

The financial situation isn’t quite as rosy. We need cash to do some things before we head over Bass Strait, and while the weather window to do that generally lasts until April, the job front hasn’t been terribly forthcoming either.

For those that are considering giving it a go, living a mobile lifestyle on Centrelink unemployment benefits doesn’t work. The fundamental problem is that you have rules you must comply with to continue being eligible for a payment, one of which is face-to-face meetings, once a month, with your employment agency. Your agency is local to your registered address and Centrelink don’t like you changing agencies too often. They take a very dim view of changing addresses, particularly if it’s to a place that has less employment than the one you left. If you miss any appointments, or reschedule your appointments too often, it also counts against you.

Of course, schedules and cruising don’t mix, and most coastal towns have appalling unemployment, and the job agencies are in the larger population centers, meaning you need a car… You get the idea.

There’s a job opportunity that may come to pass in Hobart. It’s a good job, albeit maybe only part-time at first. Going back to Hobart sorta feels like going backwards, and I’m sorta having trouble with seeing my current lifestyle come to an end, but it’s a job.

Lis is also not overly keen to go back to an inner city lifestyle, but both of us recognize the need for an income.

There’s also opportunities in Aukland, NZ, in Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne. All of these are 6 to 12 month contracts, and they all have said positive things about employing me, but have yet to commit to doing so.

We have a haul out due on ERIK, and we need to replace BONNIE with something we can use as a life raft. We also need to replace our toilet before we go over to the mainland, our current unit won’t be legal. The credit card has copped a bit of use, what with our regulator dramas, the thermostat replacement, and BONNIE’s repair. The refrigeration unit needs some work now too… These are all problems solved with money, but it’s money we don’t have at the moment.

So we may end up coming back down to Hobart. We may go and spend some time in NZ or on the mainland…

Who knows what the future will bring, but the next few months will be interesting times.

For those wanting a trip down memory lane, check this out:

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