For a traveller like me, home has moved around over the years.
Moving is a crazy-fest of logistics, whether it’s the next suburb or across the world.
When you come up for air post-moving, you can count on the reason that you moved to take over.
The new job, the new life, that’s your focus now (while you find that cute cushion that will “pull the room together” and fumble your way through moving doctors, finding your best local coffee shop and where to go for a great night out).
There are new friends to make and old ones to keep up with. There’s family (and family’s family), all wanting the latest details to talk about.
“How’s Cara enjoying Brighton?”
“Bristol, Brighton, same thing isn’t it?”
(They may want the latest details to talk about but that doesn’t mean they care. You are not the centre of their world. Ego – stand down).
Still, there you are making a new life in your new place, doing all the doing, when up comes a reason for a bit of a getaway.
There’d be that hurdy gurdy of finishing work and getting everything organised; papers stopped, pets sorted and those stupid last-minute tasks that you think you need to do “so you can relax while you’re away” (right?!).
Often, I’d only realise that I’d truly adopted the new place on returning.
I’d be surprised by that wave of anticipation stealing into my body as familiar sights, smells and sounds welcomed me, wrapped me close and carried me to my door.
I’d know that this place was home.
Last month, I went back to an old home in Bristol.
The town was thriving and I admired so much of what was going on, but I felt no ownership. Visiting was glorious, without any sense of loss I’ve moved on.
By contrast, the drive from Dunedin to Dee St in Oamaru was delicious.
A blood red sky called us in, through the mighty hills of the Leith Valley, curling round Shag Point and racing upwards to the special thrill of Welcome to Oamaru, Maudes Rd, Saleyards, the Community Gardens and Public ones to home.
There were meetings last week that oozed Oamaruvian passion. Town revitalisation. Youth Employment Skills Development. Cancer Support. International Student Exchanges. Native Trees. Business Development and the new Regional Business Partnership Programme.
It feels so good to be home.