Well who’d have thought it. 15 Years. 15 Years have passed since we boarded that plane, young, free, with not a care in the world, heading to the Southern Hemisphere with nothing but a passport, a backpack and a mind full of dreams. Read more…
It’s a funny thing, time. As much as it seems like a lifetime ago that we went on our great year long adventure, pre-kids, pre-house, pre-marriage, it also seems like just yesterday that I wrote that first entry in the travel diary the night before we flew, still, even now, being able to feel how I felt writing it in anticipation of what lay ahead. The trip was something we had planned for some time, something we’d talked about since we’d met 4 years before and to finally be doing it felt amazing! They say travelling opens the mind, and a year away from home, work, family and friends certainly did just that. But fast forward 15 years to the day, and the mind can’t help but reminisce about what was, was used to be. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not worse now, not by a long shot, just very, very different.
Walking around Singapore on February 10th 2002 en-route to Perth, Australia, I remember the enormous feeling of freedom, of life, of living, just for 2 nights, in this amazing properly foreign city, with street markets, and kids dancing in fountains bare foot. Other than a few Mediterranean family holidays, neither of us had been anywhere far outside of our lazy Welsh town, so this was an eye opener to say the least, and felt so unbelievably amazing.
Now, 15 years on, February 10th 2017, I sit here at my home office desk, post school run, washing machine on for the second time already this morning, circa -20°C outside, debating what healthy leaves I can throw together for lunch, thinking of nothing else bar this day 15 years ago.
We can talk kids cliché’s ‘til the cows come home. ‘I love my kids, I wouldn’t be without them, they’re best thing that’s ever happened to us’, and yes of course, all of those things are 100% correct, they’re our children, why wouldn’t we feel that way? Do I feel guilty because I reminisce of days without them? No, of course not, should I? When I hear people say ‘I can’t ever imagine life without my kids’, I agree, I can’t imagine not having my little sidekicks either, but it doesn’t mean I don’t remember, or miss, my beautiful life before them.
But on days like today, when you can pinpoint exactly where you were in your previous pre-kids existence, and still feel those emotions, it’s tough to not miss what once was, however, there isn’t really a comparison, some things are better, some are worse. I can no longer try clothes on in the changing room of a shop, (or if I do, there’s 3 of us squeezed in there), I can no longer watch news and weather in the morning because Cartoon Network has priority, but I can sit down on the floor for 2 hours building Lego, sit and simply colour for a time without feeling guilty that I’m not doing housework, and of course, having karaoke bubble baths with my two of my best friends is a plus point (although maybe I did that in Ibiza??), but the truth of it is, neither is better or worse, they are just two very different world’s we’ve lived in.
I think this year I will read our diary in-sync with the date it was written, reliving our adventure one day at a time. I’m pretty sure that the ages the children are, 10yrs and 8yrs this coming Monday, they will enjoy hearing the stories of what their parents got up to on the other side of the world, who knows, maybe it will inspire them and plant the travel bug at a young age… or then again, they may get board after 5 mins and revert to obsessing over Shimmer & Shine & catching Pokemon. Meh, c’est la vie.