The doors of our Caloundra apartment are wide open to the humidity of the evening. Outside revellers are celebrating the last evening of 2013, music and voices mingle in happy tones. I have just read, cover to cover, the latest Kinfolk Magazine - the theme of this issue is ageing, so lots of stuff about things that get better over time. I turned 50 in 2013, and for me, so much more than the famed 40, I am finding myself pondering life in the decades beyond physical prime. Maria is in Launceston with her mum, Gaylene who is in a bit of health dip at the moment. Phone conversations with her dad, Nick typically involve health updates, and my parents, Brian and Esme are also navigating the realities of living in their 8th decade, and I'm on the wait list for elective surgery.
This evening's read was good for my soul. While our bodies inevitably begin to slow down and function differently, so much about ageing is to be embraced with quiet vigour. So many things get better over time.
... which is all a prelude to what I sat down to write about. It feels like our years of yurting, at least as we have known them, have ended. But it is a happy ending! We set out to integrate the simple habits and rhythms of coastal caravan living into our lifestyle rather than making them a holiday routine. After 5 years of about 3 months a year in the yurt (caravan) we can confidently proclaim that buying our van and using it like we did was one of the best things we've done.
The taste (or was it a feast) of simple, seaside living was undeniably formative in our decision to base ourselves here on the Sunshine Coast, where daily ocean swims and simple living rhythms are our privileged lot. But when you live somewhere like this, the incentive to hitch up and drive dissipates. The caravan sits 5 minutes away in storage. Last year, apart from a weekend down in Kingscliff, it only got lived in for two weeks in Byron Bay midyear.
Over the last few years, our circumstances have allowed us to do some international travel and we have used this site to chronicle some of that. But in 2014 we anticipate no international travel for pleasure and no yurting apart from our regular winter sojourn 'east of everything'. So, is this the end? And, dare I allow myself to even think it, is it time to sell the caravan!!!???
If the answer is 'yes', then I am sober but not sad. Like a sports person who has 'left nothing' on the field, we lived out our 'no regrets' approach and have stories and memories that are precious, precious, precious. The nearly 400 posts on this site are a glimpse of that. And we are doing the same while living here, sucking the marrow out of it, with no way to anticipate the circumstances of life we will be called on to navigate, the opportunities and challenges that will define the coming years. In the ups and downs, we hope for love, for peace, and for some joy.
The (kids) fireworks have just finished around at Kings Beach. Lots of thunderous noise, but they're done now. And so, for now, are the travel blogs from this site. And the new year is just about here for the living ...