Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Homesick for New Zealand

I was just lying on the bed daydreaming about being back in New Zealand ...

For those who don't know, Belgium is pretty much the crossroads of Europe. When you're out on the motorways vehicles carry a country of origin tag and reading them is a novelty when you come from a smallish island nation at the bottom of the world.

There are Polish trucks, German, Dutch, Spanish, English Irish ... I've even seen Turkish trucks. European children can play registration plate games that New Zealand children can't even imagine while travelling the highways of home.

But homesickness ... I was lying on the bed with the sliding door open, enjoying the slight chill in the air, identifying the temperature as 'Dunedin around Easter time' ... such is the crazy upside-down life of a kiwi transpanted to the Northern Hemisphere. I experience the seasons in a complete reversal that is occasionally mind-boggling.

But it wasn't only the chill in air that was taking me home, it was the roar of the traffic on motorways leading into and around Antwerpen at 8.30am.

Morning rush hour and the roar of it took me back to Tautuku Beach on those nights when the surf became a constant roar as opposed to a pounding surf ... and the longer I listened, the more I could move round the South Island of my country ... to my sister's house on top of the hill in Andersons Bay; Long Beach during a spring tide and so many other beaches I love and can hear in the noise of the traffic this morning.

Sometimes I wonder about who I am now ...a woman who can live near the beach in one country without borders, or a woman who loves living somewhere close to the centre of Europe in terms of wandering through three different countries in a matter of hours.

Today I'm missing the beaches of home, the air and the people ...

And the photographs...?
The first is the beach behind Hokitika township, then Tomahawk Beach in Dunedin and finally the beach down at Taieri Mouth in Otago.

10 comments:

Manic said...

New Zealand seems so wonderful. Just look at those beaches, we don't hvae that. All we have is that one straight line of 67 kms coast filled with high rise buildings.
Traffic sounds like waves hitting rocks? Wow what are you taking?

Joyce said...

Lol noooooo, it's not about the waves hitting the rocks, it's about the sound a messy tide with waves the kind of surge instead of rolling and breaking.

Sometimes, specially in a spring tide, the sea sounds more like the roar of the motorway than of the sea ... manic, it's too difficult to explain, you're just going have to go there and hear it for yourself :)

Mark J said...

Sorry you're feeling down Di. It's funny - sometimes living in Auckland I get homesick for the sites and smells of home, even though I'm only 2 hours away, and IN the same country. I guess the important thing is that there is a place here for you, even if technically you're not here right now: After all once a Kiwi always a Kiwi :)

woman wandering said...

Lol noooooo, it's not about the waves hitting the rocks, it's about the sound a messy tide with waves that kind of surge onto the beach instead of rolling and breaking.

Sometimes, specially in a spring tide, the sea sounds more like the roar of the motorway than what you might imagine ... manic, it's too difficult to explain, you're just going have to go there and hear it for yourself :)

woman wandering said...

Hey there Mark ... it wasn't so much 'down' as 'just homesick' :) and yes, it's surely a case of once a kiwi always a kiwi.

Being away from 'home' I end up finding ways to locate my self ... and, on the bright side, it makes me appreciate NZ even more than I did when I lived there.

christina said...

Well, you know I can relate. We could hear the sound of the ocean from my parents' house when we were on holiday and it's one of the things I miss the most now that we're back here.

Must try to be zen about it and attempt your "truck meditation" trick. Plenty of trucks roaring by on the nearby highway...

Your photos continue to astound me, BTW.

woman wandering said...

Truck meditation ... okay, sounds wise :)

Astound is a big word, thank you, you did make me smile.

harvey molloy said...

Great photos--I really must get down and see more of the South Island.

woman wandering said...

You really must Harvey, and you must promise to email me so that I can tell you of all of the places that might be special.

I lived in Dunedin, Cromwell, Marlborough and Fiordland ... I know stuff :)

But yes go, and then write of it so that I can live vicariously ... please lol.

I hope to be home early 2007 but it depends on what my daughter is doing ... whether she moves here or not. Time will tell I guess.

paris parfait said...

Beautiful photographs and beautiful memories and sentiments. Thanks for sharing. I know what's it like to miss someplace so much. xo