Here we go. Five hours and 28 minutes to decision time.

I’m writing this in the departure lounge at Melbourne Airport as we wait to fly back to Sydney for D-Day at the MRT. We’ve had a very pleasant weekend in Melbourne, looking for a place to live and playing silly buggers with Will and Sean.

We saw a couple of places that we liked, but nothing we really want to fall over ourselves for, so our accommodation situation is up in the air a bit. We’ve applied for the two places we liked, but if they don’t come through then we’ll have to rent something over the phone I suppose. What was encouraging was experiencing the neighbourhoods we were considering, trying them on like new clothes and seeing if they fit. Carlton North, Fitzroy North, and Brunswick East are our favourites.

In between house inspections we found time for a stroll along funky Brunswick Street, a trip to St Kilda (where Brent confessed that he wasn’t previously aware that Melbourne was on the coast), a visit to the Laird, which proved satisfyingly convivial, and a movie (The Triplets of Belleville, an animated French/Canadian production which is just wonderful).

The house hunting and sightseeing have provided welcome distractions from our impending moment of truth. We feel pretty confident that, by the end of today, we’ll have what we’ve spent the last three years trying to secure, but of course it’s not over until it’s over, and there are no guarantees.

Sitting here at Tullamarine and watching the airplanes coming and going, it’s hard not to reflect on how much has gone before today. So many miles and hours have been crossed to bring us to this point. It’s been three years and five days since we walked into the immigration department building in Sydney with our lives, carefully catalogued in documents, photographs and declarations, to begin this process. The process hasn’t been easy, and at times I think we’ve both wondered if we’d ever get to this day. But here we are. Bring it on.