I know where I'm going..

Melbourne, Australia


So… what did I say in my last blog? Ah, yes.. Melbourne was becoming to feel a whole lot like home, and I couldn’t have that. I had to leave and explore – spread my wings and fly away..

So, tomorrow I leave for Queensland.

Yet.. every time I think about leaving, I don’t feel excited? I don’t feel excited about the thought of seeing new things? The thought of meeting new people doesn’t make me shiver with anti….cipation.

No. Instead, I feel.. sad. I feel.. lost.

Whenever I think about leaving Melbourne, I feel like a ship that’s trying to sail away but I can’t – my anchor is firmly hooked into the seabed.

****.

I was not expecting this.

I need to go out and explore. I need to see things. I need to feel alive and scared and challenged.

*screeches*

Sorry, that was me hitting the brakes. Why do I need to go out and explore? Why do I need to see things? Why do I need to feel alive and scared and challenged? Maybe it’s the pernickety child inside me of trying to prove something?

“I’m on the other side of the world in Australia – this is an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I have to do everything. I have to explore!”

Maybe now I’m starting to grow up?

*cue audible gasps, slack-jawed expressions and a lot of pointing at me*

Oh, why don’t YOU grow up?

I place a lot of pressure on myself sometimes. I feel like I HAVE to do this and that because it’s what expected of me.

“Oh, you have to go and see Ayers Rock.”

“I drove a 4×4 through the outback.”

“I dived in the Great Barrier Reef.”

“I sailed down the Murray River in a Paddle-steam boat.”

That sounds amazing, brilliant and it’s certainly an experience. But it’s your experience. Just because you did it or heard that someone did it, doesn’t mean I have to do it. I’m not saying I’m not going to do it, but if I don’t, it’s not necessarily a bad thing.

I’m still going to Queensland tomorrow. I’ll fly to Brisbane and the Gold Coast. But I won’t be staying there for long – I’ll be coming back to Melbourne in a couple weeks.

Why?

Well, because I’m happy here.

I have amazing friends who make me laugh and cry. They’re thoughtful and caring. I know they’d do anything for me if I asked them to and vice versa. I hate the thought of leaving them. There’s still so many things I haven’t seen and done here.

“But you haven’t seen and done some parts of Australia too?” I hear some of you say.

Yes, that’s right. But you are forgetting that I’ve already been to Western Australia, Queensland and New South Wales and I will be making a visit to Northern Territory in a couple of months or so.

But I have to be realistic. all that traipsing around is gonna cost me a lot of money, and I’ll be honest – my savings are running low at the moment. It’ll soon be replenished, don’t you worry. But I’d much rather stay here with my friends and have fun rather than go and explore on my own.

“I think travelling is all about the experience and the people you meet, and growing up as a person. I doubt you will change as a person seeing the Taj Mahal, compared to spending the night with someone really interesting who actually works at the Taj Mahal?” – Martine Monksfield.

(I typed Laverty at first. Why do I still have a hard time accepting that you’re married – it’s been three years! I should be used to it by now!!!)

She has a valid point though.

It doesn’t matter where I go, as long as I’m happy?

I’m currently reading a book called ‘Peace is every step’ by Thich Nhat Hanh. Thích Nhất Hạnh is a Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk, teacher, author, poet and peace activist. The book is about mindfulness. What is mindfulness? Well, it’s a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.

“What a load of crock!” I know some of you may say. “Breathe in, breathe out. I’m all zen right now. Whoopie-*******-doo!”

Okay. If some of you choose to take that view, that’s completely fine. That’s your view.

I’ll read you a paragraph from the book.

‘We are very good at preparing to live, but not very good at living. We know how to sacrifice ten years for a diploma, and we are willing to work very hard to get a job, a car, a house and so on. But we have difficulty remembering that we are alive in the present moment, the only moment there is for us to be alive. Every breath we take, every step we make, can be filled with peace, joy and serenity. We need only to be awake, alive in the present moment.’ – Thich Nhat Hanh.

I can’t explain to you how right he is. We are always rushing to places, we’re always making plans for the future – we’re always thinking about what we’ll be doing five minutes later.

How often do we just.. stop, and appreciate the moment for what it is?

I’ve been doing that a lot lately and it’s made me a lot happier and appreciative of what I have around me. I climbed Mount Bodonga on Friday, and when I was at the top, I took a deep breath and took in the view. It was amazing. i felt so peaceful. I even do it at traffic lights, I just sit and smile and watch people walk on by.

Maybe that’s why I’m much more calmer now. That’s why I’m placing less pressure on myself to do this and that.

I know that Australia isn’t a once-in-a-lifetime experience. I know I will come back to Australia. I will come back several times throughout my lifetime, and I will do everything that you’re supposed to do. Even if i don’t manage to see or do everything, that’s ok. I’m happy anyway.

I know where I’m going. I don’t mean literally, I mean figuratively. I know I’m going to be happy in whatever I do.

Literally though, I’m going to Queensland tomorrow, but I’ll be back because Melbourne is an amazing place to be, and I have amazing friends.

Oh, and because I have an amazing girlfriend, with the biggest heart, an amazing personality, a dazzling smile, her kindness and thoughtfulness makes me smile and I feel happy whenever I’m with her.

*coy smile*

That is all.

Bye.

*runs away*

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