Sunday, March 25, 2012

Go Get Car Share

Before moving to Sydney, we got rid of all our vehicles - one way or another (tongue in cheek here).  Jim thought it would be a good idea for us to join Go Get.  It's a car share program.  The Go Get cars are parked in various areas (a lot near us).  You can go online or on an app on your phone and reserve a car for any amount of time that is available.  There are three different programs: Get Started, Go Occasional or Go Frequent.  We decided to Get Started in the beginning.  With this program, you pay $49 for the credit/background check then you pay like $14/hour and like $0.20/km.  If you reserve the car for a day, it caps at like $68/day or something like that.  Anyhoo, you don't have to pay for insurance or gasoline.  It is provided by Go Get.  There is a fuel card in the glove box and everything.  You just have to make sure you park the car where you found it with at least a quarter of a tank of gas.

So anyway, we decided to reserve Barbara, the Hyundai i30 for 2 hours to go to a REAL grocery store.  Jim found a Woolworth's with a parking lot in Neutral Bay... not far from us.  So we loaded up the car and headed out.  We had not been in a real grocery store in almost 2 months.  You should have seen our faces!  How exciting!  However, it didn't last long.  First of all, we were late getting to the car.  By the time we got to Woolworth's, we only had an hour and a half left before the car had to be parked back where we found it.  You may think this is plenty of time.  That's what I thought.  But remember... I had no idea what aisle contained what.  Not to mention that most groceries in Sydney are COMPLETELY different from what we buy in America.  So you can't even buy the same things you are used to buying.  By the time it was 11:00am, Jim is constantly looking at his watch and pointing and I had not even found saline solution or the milk or frozen food or minced chicken.  (The minced chicken was sort of an add-on because we decided to break down and buy a pan to cook something in instead of only eating frozen stuff for the next month or so.)

First of all, saline solution is not sold in stores.  I'm going to have to go to a chemist or to Priceline to buy it.  I got most of the other stuff, but then went through the checkout only to find that the total was $420.  I thought I would have a heart attack.  I just never want to go through that again.  I would much rather just take the train into Town Hall, run into Woolworth's for whatever we need for the next couple of days and then take the train back.

We decided to walk over to Sydney CBD to go to Priceline for my saline solution.  It's not like I'm in danger of running out tonight, but I guess Jim just wanted to go for a really long walk for ice cream.  We get over to Priceline only to find out that they are closed on Sundays.  We should have known.  So then Jim suggests that we take the ferry home, since the ferry stops down the road from our apartment.  But the next ferry was going to be in an hour.  We just bought an ice cream at Copenhagen's (same as price of ferry ticket!) and walked back home.


  1. I just started reading your weekend posts...
    1. $420.00 for groceries - I would have keeled over! :)

    2. What is capsicum??

    3. Love the GET STARTED car thing....novel idea!

    4. Love that you shop at Woolworth's! Did you live in CT when we used have Woolworths here? I loved that store! But it was not a grocerty store!

    5. I can only imagine how you must be chomping at the bit to get your OWN stuff - two more weeks!

    6. I'm going to check the Zumba website so you don't have to use your bandwidth, to find some local zumba.....

  2. 1. Yes, and we didn't really have THAT much stuff.
    2. Red bell pepper
    3. :)
    4. No, not in CT, but I know that Woolworth's was more like a Walmart type of store in the states, right?
    5. Two more weeks before it hits the docks. Then we have to wait for it to clear customs. Could be another couple of weeks or MORE!
    6. I did find Zumba at a gym on my way home that I'm thinking of joining. Zumba is only once a week, but at least it's something. If I can keep up walking to and from work, I'm looking at almost 5 miles a day. :)

  3. Hi there! Just thought I'd drop you a comment because you may not know that Woolies does home delivery for a nominal fee. Check Woolies' website. Also, you'll get used to the food here, and figure out all the little substitutions/name differences. It takes some time, but I promise before too long, you'll be totally accustomed to the brands, and calling cilantro- coriander and corn starch- corn flour and shopping carts - trolleys (though you may never get used to the wheels on the trolleys!).

    1. Thanks, C! I know that part of my frustration is due to my own stubborn-ness. I'll check out that delivery. How much to have someone do my laundry??? LOL

  4. Yvette ... I do feel for you with the strangeness of it all, living in a new country.

    I feel for all expats and repats too for that matter!!!

    We lived in SE Asia for the past 5+ years and repatriated to Australia last month ..... the frustrations, the ups and downs, the costs, the feelings etc are all the same for us too ...

    that is apart from the washing machine. :)

    We are also waiting on our shipment, it arrived on the docks on March 22 but it takes at least two weeks for customs and quarantine to do their inspections ... now with Easter upon us, it looks like we don't get the container till late next week. :(

    In Singapore I had a washing machine that did a 6kg was and that was fine for us, just one wash a day got me thru without any dramas, but all my friends from the US complained about the "small washers" in Asia and that they were always bigger 'back home'.

    As for the foods you cannot locate, perhaps try and find a substitute? None of us can locate the familiar brands and foods we are accustomed to, so to survive the day we need to find the equivalent if possible.

    But all this 'settling in' takes time ... sometimes a year or so, sometimes just a few months ... but take one day at a time and look for something extra special to brighten your day - each day.

    ... and learning about a new culture is good for us all. We learn to accept, to adapt and to harmonise with others ... and with that comes new friendships.

    I felt totaly blessed to have to opportunity to live in SE Asia for all that time and was amazed at all the wonderful friends we made .... most were 'locals', hardly any of them were expats!

    Hang in there and if you feel like a bit of a moan or whinge ... email me:

    leonefabre AT gmail DOT com

    better to whinge at someone you don't know that your dearly beloved partner. :)

    enjoy your day.

    1. Thank you for taking the time to post, Leone. I really appreciate it. This is the first time I've moved out of the US. I honestly thought that I would enjoy the new experiences. But I think that most of the difficulties I've experienced have taken me by surprise. All of the people I've met here are wonderful. I feel completely accepted. And things have definitely been looking up. :)