- Photo Essays
This blog is about finding inspiration in faraway places. It’s about off-the-beaten-path destinations and extraordinary journeys. It’s about the moments in those places that make you stop and catch your breath.
It’s musings and stories and ideas and photography of some of the world’s most beautiful places....
About ten years ago my beautiful Grandad – a great world traveller back in the day – said to me that no matter how much he loved to travel, he always felt a sense of relief and happiness when he finally returned home again.
As his plane descended back into Perth in Western Australia, he would peer down and see the kangaroo symbol on tails of all the Qantas jets lined up on the tarmac, and he would feel happy to be coming home.
Anyone who has been abroad for a while knows that coming home after travel is not without its challenges. I had just returned from three years of living and working overseas and he turned to me and asked if I felt the same way about coming home.
I didn’t elaborate and although he never said it, I think my Grandad was disappointed that I didn’t feel more of an attachment to our country.
In complete contrast to him, I would always feel a sense of sadness and even anxiety when I was coming home after travel. That descent back into Perth symbolised the end of my adventure and the beginnings of being thrust ‘back to reality’.
* * * * * *
Your perspective changes so much from your mid-twenties to your mid-thirties, and no doubt it continues to change.
When I got on that plane back in 2000 and embarked on my first round-world trip, I had no idea that I would be gone for over three years or that travel would come to play such a huge part in my life.
At that time, all I wanted was to be somewhere else. And when I returned after three years it took me a really long time to adjust to being back in Australia.
Australia is now one of the most expensive countries to live in the world. The cost of living is exorbitant. Which means it is more difficult for me to save to travel than ever before.
I love the smell of the Australian bush. I love bush barbeques and camping. I love our incredible coastline and white, sandy beaches. I love the vastness of it all.
I love that you can circumnavigate this beautiful island and never be too far from a beach.
But mostly I love it because even when I am on the other side of the world – photographing polar bears in the Arctic, or driving through the wilds of Iceland, or wine tasting in Tuscany – this oddly shaped island Down Under is, and always will be, my home.
And although I hold no affectionate feelings whatsoever for Qantas (quite the opposite, in fact), now I see the kangaroo symbol on the tail of those jets when I descend into Perth, and I smile. And I always think of my Grandad.
Having said that, I am literally counting the days until I get over to Europe again and see all my wonderful friends! I absolutely cannot wait to be on the road again!
But these days regardless of how much of my time I choose spend overseas, or how much I love to travel, or how amazing my trip has been….it is always so good to be home.
All photographs and text copyright © Quiet Wanderings 2012. All rights reserved.