When I left home last September I did so with no plans to come back anytime soon, although I was at no point planning to never come back, either. I just left – left with the intention to explore the world and enjoy life as it unfolds, one day at a time.
Eight months later I find myself in my own bed in Bronte, New South Wales, Australia, wondering what’s going to happen next. I now have what I came here for: a simple job, a room in a shared flat, and friends; except quite a few of them are leaving in the coming weeks (if they haven’t already done so) and I’m not the only person residing in my room, and my job is everything but simple. It is fun, yes, as I wanted it to be, but, believe it or not, it can be challenging, too.
Looking back at the past 7 weeks, it has taught me a lot not only about myself but other people, too. Although I consider myself reasonably well-traveled, it’s taken me until now to realize how different people really are. What’s obvious for one is far from evident for another as values and priorities differ, even amongst Europeans, which is crazy as I do have friends here and there in Europe. What a bubble I have lived in.
Having gone from struggling to make time for all of my friends to seeing quite a few of them move on quite suddenly, I can’t help but wonder where the next couple of months will take me. Provided that I want my 2nd year visa, like all other backpackers (although I strongly oppose calling myself a backpacker) I, too, need to complete 88 days of rural work, more often referred to as farm work. While people always talk about three months, 88 days of 5-day work weeks actually add up to almost four months. As my visa expires mid-November, I’ll have to get started with my farm work asap after I finish my course mid-June in order to have at least a bit of a margin in case things end up not going too smoothly.
Never mind that, though, because the question is: do I want to do my farm work? Do I want my 2nd year visa, or is that just what the optimizer in me has had in mind in order to, as per tradition, keep all the doors open? I am not sure.
If I’d choose not to do it I’d have a full five months off before having to leave, a full five months to do anything I want, anything I feel like before flying to NZ – I can’t not go there while I’m here – or Asia or, well, who knows where. Home?
Anyways. My point is that everyone is moving on. Everyone’s just passing through and time flies. Although I want to live in the ‘now’ and enjoy it while I can, awareness of the fact that it’s almost May, which means that it’s almost summer back home, which, in turn, in real life equals August and August was my last month at home, is creeping in on me and I find myself wondering what will happen next.
What will happen next? Vad ska hända härnäst?
Time flies and we’re heading towards winter and it’s confusing to say the least because it’s April and Christmas is not around the corner. It’s dark outside because the sun sets as early as 5.30 pm so we’re burning candles while Christmas carols are playing in my head – crazy, yes, I know – and I can’t help it but something’s missing and that something is Christmas, it really is, no matter how strange it may sound. What time of year is it really?
Does it matter?
Should I stay or should I go? That is the question.