I promised another post about my trip, so here it is. Before I go on though, I'd like to thank everyone who commented on the previous post and who welcomed me back to the blog. I sometimes think of giving up this blog. Blogging has changed a lot in the past couple of years but as long as I have such loving comments, I'll keep writing. Although we still live very simply and that will remain the focus here, my thoughts often wander to other things that not many people write about, such as ageing and dying. So along the way there will be a sprinkling of those posts and a few opinion pieces too.
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Back inside the bubble. Hurrah!
First there is the solo drive down to the Blue Mountains. After weeks of anticipation and waiting, THE morning when I get up early, earlier than I usually do, make a thermos of tea, get into my car and drive into the dark-soon-to-be-light. The first part is manoeuvring through local and city traffic to reach country roads before there are too many people and cars around. I made the trip from home to my first stretch of country road, near Ipswich, in under two hours. Okay, everything's good. Get the music cranked up and let's get this show on the road. What follows is a lot of loud singing of songs you'd never believe I like, but I filled my lungs with sound and joy and happily drove mile after mile.
Some signs our overseas friends may not have seen.
I stopped at a few country graveyards that are usually beside an abandoned church.
I stopped at a bakery for a cranberry and orange muffin and then sat in the quiet shade of a country lane with my cup of tea, away from the passing traffic (because I'm paranoid that I'll be captured by a serial killer and no one will ever see me again). Looking around I could see cows, a half full dam and over on the hill, a few alpacas. I felt good, a new adventure before me beginning to unfold. I was out of my familiar bubble and loving it.
And the excitement of being out in the world, alone, being able to go where I please without telling anyone where I'll be is almost overwhelming. There is bliss is leaving behind many of the responsibilities of the average day. Being where there is traffic and hussle and bustle, where exciting things can start at any moment, where opinions, values and beliefs change with the wind. It's exciting and sometimes enriching being out there and part of IT.
I spent a week with Tricia out in the world. We ate out, met people, stayed at home and talked, watched movies, knitted and sewed. It was an absolute joy. But as the days passed by, my thoughts returned to home and then after a day or two more, I wanted to be there. There was nothing wrong being where I was, I just wanted to be in my chosen place, doing my work in silence, surrounded by trees.
Tricia's beautiful wood stove.
This is Tricia's backyard. Look at the elephant garlic growing as high as the shed roof.
This is a little wool shop we visited in Katoomba - The Granny Square in Waratah Street.
There is such a wide chasm between being out in the world, where anything can happen, and my normal days, alone and quiet with Hanno, inside our bubble. Having chosen to live as we do and where we do, it's comforting to know that I can make these solo trips and still come home feeing the same way - that this is where I belong. Home has a way of letting you know where you're at your best. I surrender to that feeling and I'm staying put for a while.