I miss my parents. In quite a consuming way. I think about them most of the time. It isn't just because I love them, it's because I enjoy their company so much. I love chatting to them, we like doing the same sorts of things, they make me feel great about myself, they make me laugh, they are positive and generous and they love life. I never feel like I need space from them and however much time I spend with them, it feels like it's not enough.
When we decided to move to New Zealand in 2007 I was worried that I wouldn't be able to get on the plane and fly to the furthest point on the planet away from them. In my 'the world revolves around me' fantasy (which the husband assures me it doesn't) my parents live next door. We live in a chocolate box cottage with wild flowers climbing all over the walls and apple trees dotted through the garden offering dappled shade. We are continuously planning adventures and there is a constant stream of people of all ages through our house, drinking tea, eating cake and quaffing wine whilst doubled over with exquisite laughter. All my mates live within spitting distance and our children run wild with each other. All this takes place in Devon, the Isle of Wight or Stamford in Lincolnshire where I went to school.
I also miss English things like people saying "ooh, I'll put the kettle on" as a reaction to any drama ranging from missing out on a parking space to a death in the family. I miss the kind of dry humour found particularly in the north where my parents live. My Dad recounted a conversation he overheard between two elderly gentlemen yesterday. "Hello Frank, it's been a while hasn't it? How have you been?" Frank replied "Well I woke up this morning so I can't complain."
Since returning from Auckland last weekend I have felt rather unsettled and raw. That always excacerbates my homesickness. My parents rang today and told me they have booked their tickets to come and visit in January. I'm so lucky they are happy to travel here as often as possible.
The photo was taken by the lad as I stood on a chair to talk to my neighbour over the fence. It tickles me to see the world from his height.