I created a post, many months ago, giving details of my upcoming trip. As I write this, there remain just over 35 days until departure. I exist now, in the strange, no-man’s-land of waiting. Consuming the waiting though, is the packing, moving, storing, and re-directing of everything that has made up my life in the last half decade. The volume of nothing, accumulated, is staggering.
The unit I called home for over five years began the journey.
Systematically, over three weeks, my parents, and I removed the detritus – filling mine, and my neighbour’s garbage bins a number of times over, while packing into boxes the materials to be kept. In many ways, the process resembled an archaeological dig. Sifting, examining, and sorting the items of true value from the rest.
Then, last Friday, I returned the keys to the property owner and closed the door on a very big part of my life. In that unit, I wrote an Honours thesis and completed my Masters degree. I worked in three different jobs and spent rowdy nights with wonderful friends. The memories are not bittersweet because I would not change anything of my time there.
I returned to my hometown last Saturday. It is a quiet place, in some ways modern and in other ways, completely naive of the outside world. Thus far, the days have continued to pass in a flurry of activity, tidying, removing, walking, and organising for my Brisbane life to be compacted neatly into the lives of my relatives, who are storing that, which I cannot take with.
In the earlier paragraph, I wrote the undertaking has been like an archaeological excavation. Until I came home to Toowoomba, the extent of this realisation was less recognisable. This morning, as I removed the books and early (shamefully bad) undergraduate assignments to make room, I came across a few little gems.
First, was the diary my sister gave me when I was nine. It is quite amusing to look back on the writing style, the spelling, and the outlook on life that one has as a child. One particular entry is about going to church, and the hymns sung on the day. I have written of one member that he is the best “sinner” in the church, quite clearly meaning, singer. There is also the record that we gave my uncle an umbrella once as a birthday present.
Other diaries, from high school are a little less cheery to re-read. The trials and tribulations of being seventeen and the attempts made at life, and at relationships. Some of the entries bring back distinctly the emotions in which they were written. In some entries, time has faded the memory and I cannot recall with any clarity the people I refer too.
There are even short stories, started and never finished, that maybe now, I will have time to re-work.
I also found my stash of love letters. The clarity of memory when re-reading this is staggering. I lost contact with the chap many years ago, but he has never been forgotten. A part of me wants to seek him out. To see if his dreams and aspirations came true. To see if he found someone new. What does he look like? Has he gotten old like the rest of us? Perhaps the infamous nemesis “facebook” will have the answers.
The journey is still just beginning. Nothing starts without due preparation. Between now and leaving the country, I will see very dear friends, graduate (again), and spend money on essentials for the trip. I will have an Egyptian visa return in the mail, and apply for a Jordan visa. And hopefully, through it all, I can update this blog with some regularity, interest and entertain those reading and keep the fluttering of the over excited butterflies at bay.