I am delighted to say that this trip home was blissful. It started with my traditional visit to my sister’s house to hang out and then wake early the next morning to make her children’s breakfasts and school lunches. This has become something of a tradition since my first trip home in September last year. My youngest nephew likes to write the date of my return on their family wall calendar and I look forward to the chaos of children in the morning.
The first thing I did after the breakfast date was to pick up my fat bike. This new set of wheels has coloured my visit home and changed the way I have been living. There’s something magnificent about crossing the road and hitting the beach on two wheels. It’s a quiet and peaceful place to ride compared with the shared pedestrian and cycle pathway along the waterfront. I feel like I’m having an adventure every time I set off and I’ve had quite a few adventures this fortnight.
But it’s not all been family and bikes. Paul and I have shared some really lovely times together this fortnight, making up for our month apart. We’ve been out to visit friends, eaten out and been to the movies. We’ve lazed on the couch, walked along the waterfront and worked out in the gym. It’s not easy on either of us my travels but we both know I have to follow this Looking for 42 adventure through to its natural conclusion (whatever that might be). But at the same time the periods apart are probably good to help us get to know each other. It allows us to appreciate each other when we are together and to think outside the box for ways we want to live together. And I learned on my last visit home that I am not ready to settle down just yet.
Next year I won’t have as much freedom to travel for a month at a time due to university commitments. But this trip home has taught me that there will be many other shorter adventures waiting for me close to home (both in Australia and in countries close to home). And then, when I am free again, more overseas adventures might await.
But for now, as I write this, I am flying from Dubai to Budapest looking out the window at snow clad peaks that rise above deep dry valleys. We just flew over two massive blue lakes and past two volcanic peaks that looked like Mt Fuji and a tiny version of Mt Fuji. I can’t read the Arabic script on the flight path monitor so don’t know which country we are over but my limited knowledge of this area says it is probably Iran. The landscape looks amazing down there. And I find myself wondering what Hungary and Slovakia will bring.