Leaving Home

On Tuesday I’ll be jetting my way back to the US. Back to my Reason and an uncertain future. Its been an enlightening, restorative break. I’ve had a wonderful time seeing my family and my many Aussie friends. Falling in love again with my homeland in the process.

Ive been in the sunshine everyday, visited beaches, attended a Rugby game, had numerous dinners, went to one of Australias great grape growing regions – The Yarra Valley.Visiting the fabulous Tarra Warra Winery and Art Gallery and lunching at the historic and newly redesigned Yering Station Winery Ive driven past the haunts of my youth and reminisced with friends whilst re-discovering the joys of XXXX and the local reds.

This has also been a time of recovery and introspection. I have started learning to play the guitar, I have written observations about the changes I have seen and about the differences between the Australian and US culture. I have agonized about what course of action I should take upon my return, but perhaps the most difficult realization has been that as I say my goodbyes I will be leaving a place that holds far more opportunity and security for me and my boys than the US can offer now, and in returning I’m placing our future in jeopardy. There is no other option, over the past five weeks I have missed my boys desperately. I belong with them and they with me. I know that in order to survive I must re-invent myself, the field in which I have expertise is dying in the US. It is my duty to provide for my family. The situation I face is fraught with uncertainty and is genuinely frightening. I will do whatever I need to do in order to to keep us going.

Sunday, my great friend Carita is hosting a barbecue where I will say hello (and farewell) to some great friends I haven’t already seen. Amidst the joy of seeing each other again and the parties’ revelry, I know I will have a single burning question at the back of my mind – when will I see these shores again?

That being said, I hope I have a much awaited and wished for occasion to return to. During my absence Jess and and I have begun communicating again, it is my most ardent hope that we can reconnect in whatever form that takes and that I can once again, at some undetermined time in the future, hug the girls who I consider to be my daughters, and my sons can play with those same girls, the girls they consider to be their sisters. Thanks to all who read my previous post and kept this wish in their thoughts. Friends and loved ones bolster us and we could all use all the help we can get.

Today I went to Montego’s on the Bay cafe/restaurant located five minutes from my parents house which has become my local, a place I go to daily to enjoy an excellent coffee, read a few chapters of a novel and do the crossword in The Age. The cafe is situated right on the beach where the sand is white and fine. It is a perfect day, the sky is blue and cloudless, the temperature is around 80 degrees fahrenheit. The setting is idyllic.

Today, however is not a normal day. On the beach today there are fifty hard-backed upright chairs bedecked in white cloth. The rear of each chair is decorated with a simple large bow made of the same white fabric. An area in front of the chairs is bordered by white pillars positioned five feet apart, they are likewise tastefully draped in white fabric. At the top of each pillar is a huge, gloriously colorful arrangement of native flowers. In the middle of this scene stands the lone figure of a woman in a conservative black dress. Many people arrive; some sit, some take position on either side of the presiding official. The gentlemen are in formal suits, the ladies in bright colors, the children in formal clothes and bare feet. He is dressed as the other men, only initially distinguishable by virtue of his position next to she. She is truly beautiful wearing a form-fitting knee-length ivory gown ( of course she would be). They have five attendants each. I cannot hear the spoken words or the vows but the civil ceremony is brief and moving. Those of us in the restaurant applaud the arrival of the new husband and wife. I collect my pens and books and paper and take my leave.

I tell not a word of a lie.

As I left I dreamed of our return to this very place and wondered not what would transpire for me; for us; but when. There’s just some people you cant live without – I just have to go back and collect them.

The Entrance to Mum and Dads

AAMI Park Melbourne

Pete and I

The pool at a friends place

Friends Barb and Mike

The path by the river to Montego's on the Bay

Parrot in a tree at Carita's

Lovely Carita

Montego's on the Bay

The view from Carita's verandah

3 on a couch

Four on a cow

About Simon

Simon Houghton creator of The Bloke Show started life as a baby, going on to become a boy and then a man, at which time he became an actor. As time passed he went on to be a director, later still he became a sales guy, then a business owner. Most recently he regressed and became a writer. Then a driver, then an actor again. Decisiveness is not one of his strong suits.
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