Time to go. I depart Australia this time with a different sadness but the same refrain: “Next time. Next time.” I am rejoicing at the beauty, the privilege of this return trip. Still, I am in pain.
Leaving is made easier, however, by the belief that, since I made it back once, I’ll make it back again. The future must hold another visit to Australia.
Thanks to the International Dateline, after more than 9 hours in flight, I landed in Hawaii a few hours earlier than I left Sydney. Almost like time travel. I was greeted by a lovely, steamy dawn in Honolulu. Customs at this hour was nearly empty and we passed through easily.
Having left, my mind speeds homeward ahead of me. Fortunately, I have a life worth returning to–a life I created after my first trip to Australia. I begin to focus on that, with thoughts of what the future holds, both at home and on the road. Still, it will take time to shake off Australia–but then I don’t have to, really, not completely anyway. I can simply start planning the next trip. It won’t take so long next time.