Home has a great many different meanings, for me, and, I guess, a great many others.
Over a lifetime we have a lot of different homes, we tend not to stay in one place all our lives.
I know, for me, my first home was in Carrum, when I was very young, and I don’t remember much of it. My second home was Mordialloc, but, again, I don’t remember much of it either.
My next home was Dandenong, in not one house, but two, the first I spent my grade school years, the second, my secondary school years, and in between a short period in a country town called Berrigan.
Then, after getting married, I left that house where my parents continued to live for quite a few years, as we bounced around, from Burnley to North Dandenong, having been drawn back to where I used to live, then back home to my parents for a short period, and North Dandenong again.
It’s curious how we return to certain places to live, rather than consider another suburb say North or West.
Equally curious about how I tend to call going home, when traveling in Australia, not, as you would think, our home in Queensland, but where we used to live in Victoria. I guess that is because it’s my spiritual home.
People often ask if we would return to Victoria, and the answer, of course, is no. We might have most of our in-law families there, but it is not enough of a pull to return. We are content just to come back once or twice a year.
For us, Melbourne had become too large a city, with all the problems that go with it. Brisbane has and will be for the rest of my lifetime, have much fewer traffic problems and the feel of being less urbanized. One thing I don’t miss about being in Melbourne is the traffic. It is horrendous, any time of the day and night.
But what would be good in Brisbane is the markets like those at Queen Victoria and South Melbourne. We have nothing like it.
And something else, rather more frivolous, Brisbane doesn’t have the same fish and chips, donuts, or spring rolls and dim sims. Every time we come down, those are the first things we get, even if we have to go out of our way.
But if someone was to ask, off the cuff, where my home is, it always comes out as Melbourne, and I have no idea why. When they ask where I live, which is supposedly the same, I tell them Brisbane. I guess it has a lot to do with where you grow up, though I’m still trying to figure it out.
At least it’s easy when I’m overseas. When they ask, the answer is, simply, Australia.