Last week I found myself starting to slide into a gentle decline. I became aware of a perpetual feeling of restlessness, unease, I'd even go so far as to call it despair. Perhaps it is the darkness of the mornings that is starting to creep in, the slight crispness in the dawn air, the appearance of clumps of pink March lilies that mark the end of summer in the southern hemisphere. We have had a wonderful summer in Auckland but there is no doubt that within the next couple of weeks we'll be starting to rethink our wardrobes; we'll need to take an extra layer when going out just in case a cold wind picks up unexpectedly. And slowly the shorts and tee shirts will be packed away and coats, hats and scarves will reappear. The winter months ahead will no doubt bring with them a whole host of new and resilient viral strains which we will need to defend ourselves against; we'll weather the storms and make large pots of soup and gather wood to put on the fire. But by August we'll be desperately looking out for signs of Spring. There is no stopping the Seasons.
But as I played with these thoughts in my mind I realised that my despair had nothing to do with the change in Seasons. I love all the seasons. I love the change in light, temperature, food and entertainment. If it wasn't for the grey of winter, the colours of summer would be a lot less vivid.
No, what I desperately longed for was Home.
I've been living in New Zealand for 9 years now and I love it. I have come to think of it as my home, there are places now that feel as familiar and comfortable to me as many of my favourite childhood memories.
But there is no place like Home with a capital H.
And Home for me will always be Cape Town. A beautiful city at the tip of Africa where two oceans meet. A place where there are people who know me inside out and love me despite my many flaws and weak spots, or maybe even because of them.
It's a place where no matter how long I have been away, within a day or so it feels like I never left.
It's a place where I can Breathe. Be. Run. Soar.
So I've booked a trip for late September - for me and my two girls. We have 198 days of joyous anticipation ahead of us. My feeling of despair has miraculously evaporated!