Monday, 3 April 2017

A Byron tonic

I've lived in 7 cities across four countries during my life. This makes it hard to call a place home. I've been thinking about this a lot lately. This idea of "home". While the most obvious place to call home would be Sydney, where I spent the majority of my life, where I was born, where most of my friends and family are.  But less and less Sydney feels like home.

The past week, indeed the past year, has been a challenging one. Yesterday morning, I woke up feeling drained and empty. One of those kind of mornings when I could have easily pulled the doona over my head and stayed there all day. I did think about it.

Instead, Skip suggested a drive. We took off down the highway, headed for the border and waved the Sunshine State goodbye, for a couple of hours at least. We drove into Byron Bay and within minutes of getting out of the car I started to fill up with goodness. There is something in the air there. The sky in a special colour, the grass is a special colour, even the dirt is a special colour.  The light is different and there is just a magic I can't translate to words or a picture.

There's always music in the air and as I took deep breaths I felt like I was drinking up a tonic. Before long all the anxiety melted out of me and I felt .... better. The kids laughed and ran, it has the same affect on them. Skips eyes brightened and I could see him visibly relax too.

I chuckled at the memories of my girls as tiny dots scurrying on the beach, loving their "Bine Bay", eating 'circle fish' and chasing sea gulls. As a busker played a Pearl Jam song I was taken back to standing on the same spot 22 years earlier feeling the first tastes of freedom of being a 'grown up'.  I really didn't want to leave.

We walked around and the girls pointed out places they remembered too. "That's where the pink lemonade got spilt", "That's where we watch the Anzac Day march", "That's where Uncle Jack bought us ice cream".

It's funny how a place you know so well, but has never actually been 'home' can feel so much like home. It's a place that has so many good memories, that makes me feel so good, I know that I will feel like that every time I return. Hopefully one day, I will have my own little patch there to call home. I know that it will always be my special place to go and regroup and feel like my true self. It was always be my tonic.

Byron Bay makes me as happy as these guys...

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