Home away from home


The day is almost here! We’ve been talking about visiting Europe for a number of years – waiting until our kids are old enough to travel well – carrying their own luggage and keeping up with a (modified) travel routine to make the trip worthwhile. And tomorrow we actually leave. It’s very exciting!

Rosie In Phoebe's seat - wanting to stay close to her little girl

One downside – leaving Rosie behind

But all four of us are experiencing a bundle of emotions. Al and I have been trying to anticipate all upcoming events while we are away, making payments, registering for the next lot of school holidays and fourth term events (both for the kids and for ourselves). It feels like we are living in the present (all that has to be done), the next few weeks (overseas) and the following three months, all at the same time. Quite confusing!

The kids are trying to anticipate and prepare for an experience they can’t imagine, really, so they swing from being silly with excitement to tears and grumpiness (and a fair bit of sleeplessness – lots of night wanderings are taking their toll). Some of their reactions seem quite strange.  For instance, Phoebe has been busy over the past few days drawing pictures of school girl zombies. She can’t explain why – all I can think is that she remembered her strong conviction last year that zombies were not scary if you lived in Australia because they are in Singapore (this belief seemingly came out of nowhere and makes no sense to me either). We change planes in Singapore and I am wondering if she thinks that through her drawings she can influence the form and scariness of zombies. Possibly I am over analysing this, but otherwise, we have a girl who seems obsessed with the things.

Some aspects I am pretty pleased with:

  • The packing cells we all have to separate different clothing, which we got from Kathmandu. Without naming names, the other adult in the household was quite dubious, but he is now coming around to the fact that this should minimise our usual chaotic packing approach.
  • The fact that we’ve already packed all but the last minute items the night before – we will be able to take tomorrow quite easily (other than having to get Sam to footy at 8am. Oh well …)
  • Our pre-bookings – hopefully we can avoid the queues to all the places we want to visit throughout the trip.
  • Seeing our family over there – we not completely away from home when we are with family! I’m really looking forward to spending time with my sister-in-law and brother-in-law, and getting to know our nieces and nephews better.
  • The warm weather and exciting adventures which are ahead!

Some things I’ll miss:

  • Our home. Things being in their place (sort of – once I put them away every day, anyway). The comfort of the known. The cosiness of special chairs near heating, for instance, and reading in bed warmed by the electric blanket.
  • Our dog. Truly, she is a delight, and such a key part of the family. She is in good hands with my sister and brother-in-law, but we will miss our little Rosie!
  • The things we will be away for – yes, we have a great adventure ahead, but there are a couple of special events I’d love to be here for (and the kids feel similarly). If only we could have our cake and eat it too – but then we’d explode, I guess!

Mostly though, I am looking forward to getting on that plane, knowing there is nothing more we can do, we are together on an exciting adventure, making special memories. And just to have this time with my husband and kids – they are my family, and with them I am home.

It will all be good – can’t wait!





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