Every time I come back to Brisbane, I drive the streets that I grew up in and feel like a ghost.
This year marks the tenth year that we left Brisbane. Back then, the Mr and I had been going out for a year and a half, and I got offered a great job in Sydney which, as a graduate, I just couldn’t refuse.
Four years later, we went to Ukraine. Three years after that, we went to Darwin. And three years since we arrived in Darwin, we’re now on the verge of moving again, this time to Dili in Timor-Leste (otherwise known as East Timor).
So it’s quite fitting that, before I upheave the family and we move onto the next adventure, that I’ve returned to Brisbane – the place of my youth and growth – for a few weeks to unwind before the challenges ahead.
There are few suburbs on the northside of Brisbane that don’t hold some kind of memory for me. A party here, a uni assignment working group there. An ex boyfriend over there.
One of my favourite things to do is just drive around the suburbs, revisiting the houses that I’ve always loved to look at, or the views that I couldn’t live without when I was younger.
Brisbane was the place I always thought I’d return to, but ten years down the track I’m still not ready. That doesn’t mean I won’t drink up the beauty of the wooden houses, the green streets, the clear winter days and the beautiful hilly vistas. Soak up precious time with friends and family who I’ve only seen once or twice a year for the past decade.
There’s nothing like a bit of melancholy to brace oneself for the adventure ahead.