So that’s it. My time in Miami has come to a close. I fly back to Melbourne today. Here are some observations and discoveries.
Memory is a tricky thing. There are Latin foods that I missed while I was in Melbourne. As it turns out, my mom’s cooking is just as good as I remembered it. I can’t say the same for some old favourites from various restaurants. The quality has declined or my palate has changed.
I’ve done more spiritual work in six weeks here in Miami than in a year in Melbourne. I’ve attended four rituals, engaged in countless philosophical conversations with Pagan friends, reviewed religious materials I’ve inherited, and have begun making plans for establishing my practice in Melbourne.
I’ve missed Melbourne. Of course, I’ve missed my partner and Sam, our dog. I’ve also missed the quiet; Miami is very noisy. I’m amazed that I was once used to so much noise.
I’ve enjoyed the break from housework. I spent more time reading; I read five books and am halfway through a sixth title.
I’m happy to have seen some people I hadn’t seen in a long time even if the circumstances under which we met again were not ideal. I’m grateful for so many things: that I was here when my (Catholic) godfather died and that I was able to attend his funeral and burial; that I was able to see my father help carry his coffin; that I got to see my godmother, her sons, and their families; that people I hadn’t seen in many years came to the funeral.
I enjoyed shopping. Melbourne is expensive and so I rejoiced at paying $16 for a new winter coat (on sale, down from $150) and 7 for new sweaters (on sale, down from $40). I stocked up on books.
Friends are still friends. There are some people I saw a lot and some people I didn’t get to see at all. They’re all still friends. They’re all still awesome and I love them.
Most of all, I’m grateful to have spent good times with family and friends. I leave here today with no regrets or unfinished business.
I have a long day ahead. I fly from Miami to Los Angeles. I have a 3.5-hour layover and then on to Auckland, New Zealand. Then I have a 2.5-hour layover before heading to Melbourne. I don’t mind layovers as long as they’re not too long. I’ll read or watch a movie. I’ll be glad when the twenty-something-hour journey is over.
I’ve only ever flown Qantas. This time, I’m flying Air New Zealand. I have high expectations. After all, they have Hobbits, Richard Simmons, and apparently the crew wears body paint.
Wish me a safe and comfy journey!