Reflections.

I just got in from a walk.  I was going to post my blog entry that I’ve already written about mobile phone companies, but that can wait until tomorrow.

I walked out to Mrs MacQuarie’s Point, as I’ve taken to doing late at night.  For those who don’t know Sydney, Mrs MacQuarie’s point is a little peninsula in Sydney Harbour, just Northeast of the Royal Botanic Gardens, and just Northwest of my suburb of Woolloomooloo.  It’s a public park, open 24/7, and it overlooks Farm Cove from the East which is also bounded by the RBG to the South and the Opera House to the West.  From here you get wonderful views of the city, the harbour, and the bridge.  Late at night there is virtually no one there, save some security guards, coppers, and the occasional possum.  It’s one of my favourite spots in Sydney, and when there alone it’s a great place to sit, look at the beautiful city skyline, and reflect.  Tonight was one of those perfect moments – the weather was just warm enough not to wear a coat, there was no one around at all (even my walk there from Woolloomooloo had moments where there was no one to be seen), and there wasn’t even a boat on the harbour.  Just me, the city, the water, and my thoughts.  And some Amanda Marshall on iPhone for some mood music on the walk there.

Sitting there, thinking, I was struck by how magical it was to be there, in that moment.  With the beauty that is Sydney Harbour, and the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, and Australia itself all on display right in front of me.  It got me thinking about my next move.  And wondering if I’m doing the right thing.

My time here in Australia is almost up.  That can’t be helped – not without the Prime Minister herself somehow offering me some sort of special visa or citizenship or some other improbable scenario.  I could apply to stay longer, but it would be a long and expensive process, and to be honest, I’m not sure if Sydney, or Australia, is my ultimate destination.  In fact, I’m not sure I believe in the idea of having an ultimate destination.  As the title of this blog (“Stay True To Your Nomad Skies,” a line from the Shaye song Beauty) implies, I’m a bit of a nomad. I like to see and experience new things and places.  I like to travel.  But I also like, during those times I’m not roaming (like right now), being somewhere as beautiful and majestic as Sydney is.  I’ve been here almost a year but it’s still like living in a bit of a dream.  I’m not ready for that to end yet.

Those who have been following my adventures here may recall earlier posts that went on, all Dawson’s Creek-like, about where I would live upon return to Canada.  At the time, I had every practical reason to want to go back to Canada, and all those reasons still apply today.  With foreign exchange markets going crazy, life earning Canadian dollars in other countries (especially in Oceania) is unaffordable.  With the experiences I had with moving here (and getting an apartment, etc), I never wanted to move again, and I’m still dreading my upcoming move.  There are so many other logical reasons that I should move back to Canada, pick a city, and stay there.  Relatedly, I still haven’t decided where exactly I’m going to live on return to Canada.  I thought I had, briefly, but I really have no idea.  Before I left, the plan had always been to move back to Toronto after a year if I didn’t end up changing my mind and going somewhere else in the world.  After leaving, I opened that up to include Hamilton and Vancouver (see earlier posts).  Recently, I thought I’d decided on Vancouver. Now I’m not sure anymore, and still have no idea.  But that’s beside the point.

The reason I went on this line of thought is that I love living in a place as grand and marvelous, and yet still fresh to me, as Sydney.  That doesn’t mean I want to stay in Sydney.  But it makes me question moving to anywhere in Canada — of all the Canadian cities, I would suggest Toronto is the only one I would consider to be “grand” and “marvelous,” but it’s not fresh to me anymore – I lived there five years, and while it’s a wonderful city, I don’t feel in a rush to return anymore.

I had dreams, once, not at all long ago, of living in some of the world’s great cities.  My work affords me the ability to move around; though I’ve come to realise it doesn’t make moving around affordable.  London and Paris were both on that list.  I considered Auckland or Wellington, too, but primarily because the opportunity to live there is limited – to do it easily it would have to be before i’m 30 (for immigration purposes).  New York has been increasingly on my mind lately, too, and not just because of the hurricane that wasn’t.

Moving to Sydney for the first time reminded me of the excitement of moving to Toronto for the first time (though with far, far, more stress)… and tonight’s reflection reminded me of some of those first moments, months after moving to Toronto, when I could sit somewhere in the city (say, a bench or a lawn on the U of T campus) and just take it in.  Breathe it. Know it.  Feel it.  Be it.

As usual, I have no way to end this post.  So I’ll leave it at that. A collection of thoughts. An ambiguous, decision-less, mess.  But what’s new?  I’ll figure it all out at some point, I guess. Even if it’s at the very last moment.

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Amber Waves on 2011/08/30 at 2:38 am

    Selfishly, I’d say Toronto because we need minds like yours now more than ever here. Unselfishly, I envy your ability to pick up and go, choose a city and embrace what it can offer. As wonderful as grand cities can be, I’d say consider the quietly grand as well… Step outside and find grand anywhere you go… I’d be inclined to head for the east coast provinces, or Quebec City if I had learned French beyond grade 9.

    Reply

  2. […] in front of you or just around the corner.  It was hard to let go, as I went on about awkwardly in another blog […]

    Reply

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