We’ve come a long way baby – from the rubble of the renovation – to our beautiful almost-finished house.
It is with some surprise, and some trepidation, that I confront the fact I have now lived in Austria for 4 whole years.
4 whole years.
In many ways I feel like I’ve just arrived, in others I feel like I’ve been here an eternity.
I’ve now been living in Austria for almost 4 years. Having a steady job, buying a house and finally feeling like I’m starting to get a slight grasp of the German language… well it’s a little bit scary.
Because it’s gotten to the point where I realise that this is somewhere I might be for a while. A few years, at the very least. The initial suitcase of clothes I brought over has been added to with various knick knacks and other belongings through each visit and each return trip home. My old bedroom in Australia is looking less and less like mine all the time.
And in facing this reality, I just want to say to my friends and family: I’m sorry I won’t be there. Because in the future, there will come a time, an event, a life occasion, a celebration, a sickness, a death… and I just won’t be able to be there.
In mid-September my parents’ long awaited trip to Europe finally swung around. After an organised bus trip through Germany and Austria they wound up on our doorstep to stay for two weeks.
A few weeks ago I received the inevitable but upsetting call – my grandma had passed away.
I was home alone on a Friday morning and I had no idea what to do with the news. I cried, I called a friend, I cried some more and then I just felt lost.
Because I couldn’t do anything. I was too far away to help my parents out, provide support or attend the funeral. The last time I saw her was 18 months ago. She was in relatively good spirits until the end, though had definitely been on a bit of a downward spiral in the last months. I felt better knowing that she hadn’t been too uncomfortable, had died peacefully in her sleep, and was probably more than ready to let go.
I go on a lot about homesickness… and I apologise, but I will probably continue to do so from time to time, because… well frankly because I have a damn good life which means that ‘minor’ issues such as these play a bigger part than they otherwise would.
And apart from you lovely folk reading my blog there is one other person who has to put up with a much bigger chunk of my whining.
When I made the decision to remain, for an unspecified amount of time, in Austria, I broke a promise.
I broke a promise to my parents, and along with that I broke a promise to my best friend in the world – my dog.