30 Apr 2014

On Family And My Hometown

In Melbourne I was lucky enough to meet the families of some of the friends I made out there.  I was given a glimpse into typical Aussie life, had proper Christmas and Easter experiences, and was welcomed warmly by strangers at the other side of our little globe.  All of these encounters, as fun as they were and as privileged as I felt, only reminded me of one thing: my own family.

I am very lucky to be a part of a huge family.  My dad is one of four and my mum is one of six, and we're the sort of family where your second cousins are pretty much the same as first cousins.  On just one side of my family, I have about 25 second cousins and roughly 12 (or is it 13... 14?) first cousins.  Like all human families mine is far from perfect blah blah blah, but what's important is they're awesome and I love them a lot.

I recently feel like I'm coming out of a haze I was barely aware I was in - a haze of missing life in Melbourne and trying to decide what the hell's going on here in the UK.  I can now say with semi-confidence that I am starting to settle back into the UK way of life.  I still miss Australia, but I'm beginning to remember what I missed about blighty too.

My Granddad beating everyone at pool
I can compare the lifestyle and quality of living in the UK to Australia all I want, and I'm not ruling out going overseas for a while again or even permanently, but the fact of the matter is I missed my family terribly whilst away and there is nothing better than coming home, catching up and just being with them.

Travel has made me appreciate my family more, I think when I was younger I took them for granted.  Since being back from Melbourne I've spent way more time with my Aunts and Uncles, and made more of an effort to keep in touch with the family members I left behind in Australia and New Zealand.  One Aunt in particular runs a restaurant with her husband in our local town, and as a result we hardly ever get to see them.  But I've actually been working at that restaurant and in doing so have grown so much closer to her and that's just really nice!

This brings me to the topic of my hometown, which is Doncaster.  Doncaster is a small town in the north, near Sheffield.  As much as I don't want to admit this, I'm beginning to really like the place.  My family are here, and so are a lot of other pretty rad people.  Rather than resisting this any longer I've decided to just go with it and will soon be starting a series of blog posts about what's good here and why.  It'll be a challenge, and I've already questioned why I'm doing it a number of times.  All I know is it feels like the right thing to do. and so I'm gonna do it.