Home and back

Well, I’m home. Or not, as the case may be. Anyone who says “home is where the heart is” hasn’t ever left it, clearly. The heart can be in more than one place at a time.
Flew out of Melbourne (which is home, where you get woken by kookaburras, and the ghost gums lurk in the fog) to Auckland (which is also home – where I live, with my partner, in what has recently been dubbed a little gingerbread house, on an island).
In between I suffered my usual airport confusion, not knowing where I was going or leaving. Looked for the Bar Coluzzi cafe which is actually at Sydney airport. At least I didn’t go searching for Charlie’s, which is in Dubai.
But, finally, here I am. We’re not rushing into anything today. Late breakfast. Now it’s 4pm and I just dragged myself out of my pyjamas. Spent the afternoon so far with face under a mudpack while tearing recipes out of old food magazines.
I’m recovering from a week of frantic school readings on top of the usual family events (four basketball games, many meals, school drop-offs and pick ups, birthday celebrations for a ten-year-old, maybe the odd antique shop, and one or two cups of coffee). Saw Pirates of the Caribbean, Ice Age 2, most of the old BBC version of Pride and Prejudice on DVD, and an awful lot of NBA 2006 on Playstation over my nephew’s shoulder. And study and work and … now I need a holiday.
On the plane on the way over I re-read Edith Nesbit’s The Story of the Treasure Seekers, which I hadn’t read since I was ten or so.

I have often thought, writes her young narrator Oswald, that if the people who write books for children knew a little more it would be better. I shall not tell you anything about us except what I should like to know about if I was reading the story and you were writing it. Albert’s uncle says I ought to have put this in the preface, but I never read prefaces, and it is not much good writing things just for people to skip. I wonder other authors have never thought of this.


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