Wednesday, June 30, 2010
I returned home today from a short stay, but most enjoyable road trip to Moama. It was a long overdue visit to see my parents.
I had not seen my mother since a friends wedding last November, and my father since September. It seems like an awfully long time but has somehow gone very quickly. It always sounds so cliché saying things like "I can't believe it's the end of June already", and "the years seem to go faster and faster as we get older", even though it really does feel this way. I honestly did not think it had been so long since I last visited my parents.
I had decided to go on a surprise visit, but when I missed my turn off and drove a fair bit further on the Hume Highway than necessary, I called my father to let him know I was on my way - the long way - and that I had hoped to arrive before midday and surprise my mother at the radio station, where she was doing a community on-air slot that day from 9am - midday. For a little while I was concerned I was not going to make it in time but I got there with 40 minutes to spare... and the surprise was a success.
Although my father was already aware I was on my way, it did not stop him from exhibiting emotion when I walked into the studio. Every time I see him I am reminded where I got my ridiculously emotional character from! It was quite moving though, and made me realise I should do it more often, (visit them that is, not cry). Four hours on the road is really not an excuse to avoid visiting people you love. I can't expect my father, at 77 years of age, to make regular trips of that distance, and my mother, who, even though she is a fair bit younger than dad, got her license quite late in life, thus her confidence on the road does not extend beyond her surrounding twin township of Echuca/Moama.
I went alone this time, or at least with no other human traveling companion... I did however take one of my dogs, (Teak), to fill that position, and she proved to be the perfect choice.
My father, who pretends to not really be a fan of dogs, (although secretly, he has a soft spot for them, especially well behaved female dogs, as they remind him of a German Shepard bitch he had, and adored, as a young adult), actually let her sleep inside next to me, which was completely unexpected. Anyone who knows my father would understand what a big thing that was!
That part of Australia really does have a certain charm to it. Taking a morning walk along the Murray, for me, is one of life's simple pleasures. It reminded me that traveling (itself) is the important thing, not whether it's an exotic or overseas destination, or a lengthy duration - although I do enjoy the opportunities when they arise - but the feeling of 'being on the road', of 'no set agenda' that is appealing and liberating.
Ah, the wide open road. There were a number of moments where I had such a strong desire to just keep driving... and driving...
Posted by Simone Maynard at 7:25 pm