I am writing this post as we have just spent our first day in Bali of our year-long travel sojourn. There are just so many stories to write about as to why and how we got here. I am calling this section of writing Dads corner. Eventually I will put it all into one page as a journal of my stories. If you are after well written, quirky writing, with correct grammar, punctuation and catchy headlines then this is not the place for you. If that does happen it will not be by design. I’m not interested in favourites and likes. Dad (that’s me) failed at English, and creative writing and I want this to be ‘me real’. So welcome to Dads Corner. My stories, my way.
This was the last photo I left of the house. All of my life had been whittled down to 7.3kg and the bin was full of the last remaining cleaning activities. I can tell you this was the second time I felt anxious. I feel privileged to be at this point in my life. I own less ‘stuff’ now than we have ever owned. If we had to have a race away from a tsunami and had to grab important things. We could do better, we could grab everything, the Morgan’s would be ready. The privilege is knowing where we came from.
A bit over a year ago I was driving my family to a burial service of my 7 yr old nephew, it had been a big week. My Australian children along with all their Australian cousins had just had their first New Zealand Maori style funeral services. I say services plural, because it is a process. There’s an open casket, there’s quiet time together, there is teaching time with our tamariki (children), there is unashamed open grieving, there’s also what I call post traumatic growth. Rather than any one feeling isolated and alone by helping one another and being with each other the opposite of PTSD happens. A whanau (family group) can come out the other side of a tragedy better than they entered it, but It’s a ‘Process’ with a capital P.
It was at this time that my wife turned to me, we were driving, from memory we may have been driving to the burial plot in the funeral procession. It was a time when all I wanted to do and all I wanted for my children was them to be with my extended Australian – New Zealand family. She said to me ‘Jarred, we have to leave… Now’. We don’t have long with our kids and we need to take them to see the world. Life is to short and anything could happen.
Our departure away from our home was always going to include a stop to the cemetery. It was a visit that we made frequently, and it was a stop that was important for all our family. Our travel wouldn’t and couldn’t have started under any other circumstances. We had to make that stop. My personal memory of this stop will be this photo. We were all affected, but none more than my 8 year old.
The privilege is this. If I was to stand in a circle with people talking about the stuff I own. It is likely that I would lose that game. My life is 7.3kg a laptop bag and my family.
Time to go to the local Balinese markets and enjoy my time here. (Disclaimer – my laptop bag was 8kg. My kids got rid of everything but my total 7.3kg does not include my 170kg bumper plates and squat rack in Perth & my tools. Just so I’m giving everyone full disclosure – ha. ‘AND’ Im not sorry to destroy the romanticism of this post)