Era 7, May 22

With no PA to help me out of bed, I had a little lie in. Gently rolling with the swell of the boat, I allowed my brain to join me. We arose together, grabbed a quick shower and went outside for a look. We were a couple of km off shore and the southern NSW coastline was charging peacefully past. I went below for some breakfast and spent most of the day out on the deck. I watched various townships file dutifully passed. I was more used to seeing them from the inside of a helmet so it seemed a little too strange to be watching them in their entirety.

Sydney approached very quietly. It struck me as somewhat strange that this massive metropolis could appear by stealth when everything around me was surrounded in a kind of ferry encrusted secrecy. I guess my holiday mode was still in force when I started to notice planes getting lower before I recognised where we were. We then started to pass the suburbs of Cronulla, Maroubra, Coogee and then Bondi on our way. My end was well and truly in sight.

About 3pm, as we approached the heads of Sydney, I was on the roof again. Like a giant orange turtle, we ploughed slowly through the heads into a glorious Sydney afternoon on the harbour. A small yacht regatta was churning up the waters and we waved furiously at people we didn’t know. I stood transfixed by the incredible skyline that I knew so well, but felt like I was seeing it for the first time. I packed this final vision up to go with the others. 

I don’t think the quality of this trip will hit me for some time. I know I tried too hard to achieve, and as with everything that I fail to do, I held myself responsible. But I also learned that that was ok. My life is about to be shattered in a way that only the most furious turmoil can describe, and I am ready for it. But if it so happens that it gets too much, there are places that I will hold within me to revisit when I need to. The silence of the flames under the tree on the A10, the moonscape of Queenstown hill, my little sumo pseudo-hippy Echidna, the sunset past Eaglehawk Neck, and the various packages that I have taken with me.

These were memorable reflections in a needed vacation from me. People say that I have so much to offer. It’s about time I started giving to myself. Let me start to be all that I am to others, and if anybody wants to come along for the ride, I’ll see you there.

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