With news of returning lust for overseas life, the knowledge that the remaining few months here will contain SG and all of our travel plans, Christmas, NYE, a dear friend’s wedding, the possible sale of our house and my birthday, and the farewell to my sister who leaves tonight to haul a backpack around parts of Africa and the Middle East, my attention has turned more than ever to what surrounds me. I am trying harder than ever to look not backwards, not forwards, but around. At Sydney in all her temperamental-Spring glory. At friends and family, my hugely fun students, at the beach whose waves are the soundtrack to my hugely fun students doing their worksheets on the Present Continuous.


The weekend was about home and family, welcoming my parents back from NYC and waving my sister off. Pizza and take-away for dinners, tea on the couch with Mum and Nan, Dad out on the barbecue for lunch. These moments, these profoundly familial moments that dotted childhood with pleasing regularity, become few and far between as people grow up, move away, come in and out of the nest. How often do we get to boil the kettle and sit with three generations around the coffee table, talking about the time Mum’s caravan drove into a lake in Croatia in the 70s?


Not often enough.


With all of this flux, this moving around, these comings and goings, hellos and goodbyes, here is what’s around.