Monday, July 03, 2006


Keep crossing those fingers...

Our container is so close I can almost feel the comfort of my own bed! It's a drawn out process though and those people we know who are planning to ship their lives out of the UK to Canada should take note.

We opted to do the shipping ourselves simply because I am "in the biz" anyway, but the segment we undertook this weekend there is no getting out of from what I understood from the international moving companies we spoke to. You HAVE to be present when your goods are customs cleared. We were told differing stories about this - that we would be able to clear the goods in transit from the port in Montreal by rail to Toronto, and then someone told us we would have to wait for the container to arrive in Toronto before clearance could be made. The net result was confusion for us, so we opted to try to track the container and time it so that we could go to Toronto around the time it arrived, as it wouldn't really save any time in the long run, least of all because of the Canada Day long weekend.

The holiday has kind of screwed us as well. We'll probably end up paying rent on the container simply because the freight company we've used wasn't open today. That's just bad timing on our part really, so I doubt there'll be any way we can negotiate our way out of that one.

Anyway, once we knew the container had arrived at port, using the Port of Montreal website, we tried to contact CN to find out when it would be on a train to Toronto. Easier said than done, but I did eventually get someone to email me some details. We discovered it would be arriving in Toronto Sunday afternoon, so after lunch Martha, me and Audrey headed out on the 3 hour drive to the city. We decided to take Audrey for a very good reason - we reckoned that any customs officer would take one look at us with an antsy kid and think "Screw this for a game of chess" stamp our documents and wave us on rather than cause any fuss. It was a well thought out strategy and possibly worked because we were there for all of 15 minutes before the guy stamped our documents and released them!

The next hurdle is to get the container delivered. As I said it's probably on storage charges - I've sent a fax to the shipping line to tell them to deliver it ASAP - we're not going anywhere so they can deliver it to us just about any day or time. I tried to call them today on the offchance there might be someone there but sadly there wasn't, so I'll be calling tomorrow to remind them they need to get their butts in gear. I wont take kindly to days and days of storage after going to the trouble of customs clearing them on a Sunday when we could have been at home with the whole family (Audrey's cousins were with us too).

So hopefully we'll have out lives back later this week! Watch this space!

A couple of nights ago I had some fun with Garageband. I was just fooling around with some of the preset loops it has, and layering them. After 3 hours of tinkering I ended up with a 6 minute long piece of 80's styled electronic dance music I've entitled "Funky Electronic Guitar" because the hooks I used are called that. I don't know where I stand from a copyright stance - it's my own work I guess even though I didn't actually create any of the parts I used. I guess it's a bit Fat Boy Slim in that respect. Martha quite rightly pointed out that anyone could "create" the same piece of music, but given the number of permutations in Garageband, really what are the chances?

I wanted to put it on my blog, but Castpost was playing up last night, and when I tried today it crashed on me. Since then I had another disaster and the file has mysteriously evaporated from my FIL's PC. Fortunately it's still on the Mac so I'll try again another time. Meanwhile I'm extremely keen to make up something else but perhaps create my own beats and loops, so I can make something that is truly original.

Today Martha has gone to stay with her sister and left me with Audrey. She's heading back to Toronto for an "interview" of sorts with an agency who hopefully will find her some freelance work. I've finally got a resume (CV) together and should be spending more time looking for work now, but I'm still losing sleep over the container right now. Once that is out of the way I might feel more motivated to look.

I know! "Excuses, excuses"!

BTW...Happy I.D. to my American readers for tomorrow. You know, you would've been much better off as part of the monarchy! ;-p

I get frustrated enough when DHL don't deliver books I've ordered from Amazon, I can only imagine how you must feel about not knowing quite how you're going to pick up all your worldly goods!
Another British friend of ours calls American Independence Day British Thanksgiving :)
I hope you guys get your goods soon! I would be distraught until all my stuff arrived if I were you - good luck!

It's weird to have you guys in "our neck of the woods" now -- You used to be 5 hrs ahead of me in time and I could visit your place and knew when you'd be visiting mine -- now I'm so confused -- I can't get down the fact that you're "here"! haha :) that I've rambled on - Hope you guys are enjoying Canada and that you can get settled in soon.
What a pain in the youknowwhat! I hope you get it all arranged soon. I hated waiting for all our stuff and it just went across a couple of states!

better off as part of the monarchy...didn't you just ditch the monarchy? :)
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