It's been exactly one year since I left South Africa to come here to the UK. One year and 12 hours to be precise. It was the first time that I was actualy leaving the borders of South Africa, and on an international flight. Everything was a novelty, and new experience. I left so much behind, a decent job, great family and friends and a great country on a leap of faith - to experience life elsewhere - if only for a short time. Life was getting a little mundane, and needed a bit of a kick, and that's definitely what I got - mostly in a good way.
The furthest that I had travelled from home was Sun City. Traveling across the african continent. The sun was rising the next morning as we crossed the English Channel. It was amazing seeing the african continent left literally behind, and soon after new land - The UK. Felt kinda symbolic - as cheesy as it sounds. I was like a kid in candy store. Everything felt new, after the 'trauma' of Heathrow, of course. I noticed everything - the trees, the signs, the air, the humidity, or lack of, the cars, the people, clothes. For a while I felt like I was on another planet. It was a whole new world waiting to be discovered, and conquered.
As most of you who read my blog entries know that my journey has not always been an easy one, but highly fulfilling. Certainly not everything has gone smoothly, but in retrospect (and only in retrospect) I would not change a thing. There were valuable life lessons in every situation I found myself in, in every person I met. It's hard to see when you are in the midst of it, but in retrospect you see things with clarity, and the the profound significance it has had on your life, the way it has shaped your character, the way it has moulded your outlook and changed your destiny.
One year later I return to familiarity, routine. I have a job, a car, a place to live. I knew exactly where I was going, what I was going to do. A day after I returned to the UK, I went back to work, to a mountain of deadlines - to my 9 to 5 (ish) routine. Familiarity and routine can be good too. Just less than a year ago before I had found work and was living, or should have been living care-free, I was yearning for this type of set-up. Now I appreciate my circumstances then, and know that life had a plan for me, that all would work out eventually. Kinda taught me that every moment should be savoured. We should stop to take the time and appreciate everything that we have been lucky enough to have right now in our lives. We are exactly, at any given point in time, where we need to be - and we must make the best of our circumstances.
Where to from here???? Who knows. I just intend right now to do and see as much as I can. Who knows if I'll be coming home in exactly 12 months time, stay a bit longer, or come home much sooner for that matter? Nothing is for certain. It's exciting, and actually quite scary as I sit writing this. Scary to know that your future, your destiny, is shaped by every decision you make!!!
I guess the only thing we can do is strap onto the roller-coaster ride that is life and hope for the best. I feel the adrenaline already, no jokes. I'll probably not sleep tonight!