“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” -Terry Pratchett.
Homecoming and what it really means has been on my mind lately – predictably I guess, since we’ve just come back to the Sunshine Coast, Queensland after nearly two years living in Vanuatu. But it’s something that I know lots of other people living away from home ponder too, especially as time marches inexorably on to Christmas, with all of the home-ness that Christmas always inspires.
There’s nothing like living away from home to make you love and fear it more. Everything is magnified when you live away from home. While we were away, I simultaneously yearned for the shiny clean, well organised, familiar functionality of home while dreading its hyper commercialised, fast paced, self focused undertones. And now that we’re back, there’s no avoiding that both of those sides exist.
The good thing about going away and stepping out of the experience of them both as normal is having the space to reflect on them, and make a conscious decision about what to embrace, and what has to go if I am to live the life that I’m made for. So this Christmas, I’m super excited about the indulgence of being able to find pretty much any delectable food stuffs I can imagine, rather than having to comb the expiry dates at the supermarket to check which of the selection of tinned goods is already out of date. And I’m also determined to resist the temptation to get sucked into the vortex of rampant consumerism and focus on showing the people that I love how much I care without investing in a disposable, toxic, exploitation kind of economy that hurts people and the planet, instead choosing gifts that come from the heart more than the wallet, and support real life artisans to earn a decent living and keep traditional craftsmanship alive.
Are you with me? Find a fairly traded treasure to gift in our marketplace.