Wheels down

We are back, wheels down, in Brisbane and home after seven months. Weeks have passed since our last blog entry, which was one of the hardest I have had to write. There has not been much enthusiasm to write since our return as we wrestle with trying to make sense of being back home – interesting times…

Let’s step back a few weeks, from Sri Lanka: we flew to Singapore where our friends Michael and Alicia and their two sons, our godsons, now live. Sadly Michael was away on business but Alicia was a wonderful host and we really enjoyed catching up with her and our godsons.

Making Alicia’s famous dumplings

Onwards on the last leg to Brisbane and while our flight arrived at 1:00 am we zipped through Customs courtesy of the express passes from Emirates due to my lifetime Gold status on Qantas. Worth all those hours flying over the years accruing frequent flyer points and status. We arrive home and straight to sleep. The next morning we are up and about without jet-lag, our slow gradual return with three stops has allowed us to adjust our body clocks in a much more user friendly manner. Great to do if you have the time, but impractical for most working people.

Everything is both familiar and new, I have always wondered how our eyes and memory work together, when we were travelling, everything was new, probably making my 20th century brain work in overdrive, now we are back we are overlaying the memory with the current image. Enough science.

The day of our return is Halloween night and Manly, where we live, hosts the biggest Halloween party in Brisbane, culminating in fireworks just outside our windows – just for us of course!!

Welcome home, aka Halloween night, fireworks in Manly

We adapt so quickly: within a few days we are in a ‘home’ routine again, albeit still feeling a little strange. We catch up with many friends which is wonderful and helps ground us. Our life has been moving most days for seven months, to stay put for a period of time is disconcerting, well, for the first week anyway. The exciting stuff, like dentist visits, crashed hard drives and weed filled flowerbeds have been the focus of our efforts.

Welcome home flowers from a dear friend

Enjoying the new local coffee shop with real French croissants!

We are still surprised at how much stuff we have after the simplicity of a single top-box bag, the decluttering process will continue, of that we are certain, however it will have to wait until December as we have a couple of short trips coming up. I know, back a couple of weeks and we will be off again. So much for staying put.

The first trip is motorcycle related. In 2013 just before we left for Europe to spend time with family, we attended a Horizons Unlimited (HU) http://www.horizonsunlimited.com event. That was probably the genesis of our RTW adventures although we did not realise it at the time. We have always wanted to give something back by presenting aspects of our experiences at the HU event but in the last four years we have always been away when the Queensland HU event was on. This year, the HU Snowy event for Sydney and Melbourne riders was scheduled for mid November. We offered to make presentations on ‘Starting a trip on the other side of the world’ and ‘Iran and the Stans’. We knew that it was late, but the Snowy HU organisers said Yes! Anne worked magnificently for a week to prepare two Powerpoint presentations while yours truly took his afternoon naps. Then we are off to the Snowy mountains.

– Anthony