When I’m away from my home country of England, usually travelling or knee-deep into expat life somewhere, I don’t usually find myself thinking of what I’m missing out on at home.
For me the benefits of exploring other places or building a new life for myself on the other side of the world have always out-weighed the familiarity of life at home.
But then, on July 5th, after the universe decided that Auckland wasn’t the place I was meant to be, I really did come home.
Allow me to be really honest for a moment here; being home is hard. Being away from my friends in Auckland is hard. Being back in the place where so many memories were built with someone who’s not in my life anymore is hard.
But in between looking for jobs and somewhere to live when I move down to London and catching up with friends from my hometown I’ve really been appreciating the little things about life at home that I’ve not experienced in 3 years.
One of those things is being able to run my old running route. In the year and a half before leaving for Australia I lost a lot of weight, about 2 dress sizes. And I owe all of it to running.
Whenever I moved somewhere new, whether it was Sydney, Melbourne or Auckland, one of the first things I’d think about was where I’d be able to run outside, I hate treadmills.
I love running in those places, by the beach, in the city; the constant mental stimulation of dodging people on the paths or watching the sea creep onto the beach made running even more rewarding.
I never ran as far in Australia or New Zealand as I did in England though.
But running my old route – a flat running route (yep, no hills out here in the sticks!) – has filled me with inspiration again: I really want to slim down again and if I can do it once, I can definitely do it twice.
You might not know that I play any instruments but I’ve been loving playing my guitar again since I’ve been back.
I got bought this guitar when I was about 16 – I’m not really that great at playing, I taught myself, but it gives me a chance to sing and messing around on the strings has always been pretty relaxing for me.
Continuing with the music theme (and yes that is a picture of me as a toddler above…) I’ve also been listening to the radio a lot. I mean, seriously a lot. I’ve been applying for jobs and finishing up some of my freelance work this week and I’ve pretty much had Radio1 on constantly.
Radio in Australia and New Zealand is pretty dire in my opinion – full of annoying, repetitive commercials and playlists consisting of whatever songs are currently in the US/UK top ten.
Okay so Radio1 isn’t perfect, and some of the music they play isn’t great but I love Zane Lowe, I love hearing new bands get their first play on the evening shows and I especially love the fact that last week I tuned in and heard Rage Against the Machine – I can’t remember the last time I heard them on the radio!