Au Revoir Darwin 2013
Three more days. I want to embrace this place, to squeeze the last moments of joy from this my second home. Today we’ll visit the markets, for the jostle of colours, the smells of sizzling spicy food and the taste of my favourite mango lime juice, its stringent iciness going straight to my brain. Then to an Open Garden, once again to witness the wonders worked in an oasis of tropical plants and swaying palms. Later we will go to hear the Gyoto Monks from Tibet perform their amazing chants, deep guttural sounds that vibrate in the soul. Tomorrow at 4 o’clock, come and witness the ritual of the mandala, an intricate sand sculpture which has taken the monks ten days to create, being swept away into the sea.
Darwin, my Lotus land, has been my second home for close to fifteen years. I will take back the deep warmth that soothes my body, the memory of the clear bright light, and the startling brightness of the stars at night. I leave it this time only on the assurance that I will be back, perhaps sooner than anyone thinks. I leave behind my children and grandchildren to continue their full lives, knowing we are closer after each visit.
As well, I leave behind some dear friends, both new and old, not least of who are the members of our Writing Life group. Yesterday four of us met in my favourite café in Coconut Grove. Thank you Kaye, Kaye, and Helen for managing to fit that lunch into your busy day. To be with fellow writers, talking about everything under the sun, was for me a fitting celebration of my three months here, rather than a sad farewell.
I will miss you all, and take comfort in knowing we can meet online from time to time.
So au revoir, auf wiedersehen, a bientot, a la prochaine. Nothing can keep me from this tropical paradise for long!