It's been over a week since I've landed in Darwin and there's a lifetime that has passed between then and now. I've sang songs, laughed till I cried, danced till my feet hurt, developed a high level of excellence in charades and incorporated dramatic charades, gestures and facial expressions into everyday life. More than that, I've had the pleasure of meeting people who have expanded my view of the world ten-fold and broken my heart and previous ideas of how life could and should be.
As the year draws to a close, as Christmas peeps through around the corner I can't help but feel change. The last couple of years of my life have passed without too much fuss, no earth-shattering news or feeling the ground change beneath me. It has been good to be grounded, good to be stable but now I can feel the world breaking in and a new one taking it's place
From my experience here in Darwin I have learned to leave my pride at the door, to reject the instinct that people will not smile back (because they do!). It's amazing what my experience has done for cementing a (hopefully) unbreakable faith in the innate goodness of humanity. Here I am waving at everyone, smiling and calling everyone by name. I am asking strangers how their day was and singing loudly, dancing stupidly to make them laugh and acting like a child - without the barriers that often keep us from approaching adults. There is an openness here and such a positive atmosphere of joy, happiness and enthusiasm for life which in a place like this is so refreshing, so inspiring and surprising. I say surprising because I have been taught that when things go wrong you tell everybody about it, you write about it on your facebook status, you repeat the horrors and pains to your friends in whinging voices. I have found so much softness in a place I expected to be so hard.
There's a lot to process so I apologise for the posts being general and not too specific but I want to do justice to my experiences. I will get there! I hope you are all able to enjoy this Christmas season and the excitement of 2010 drawing to a close. For me a huge year of preparation is finally over and the big, leaping jumping off has only just begun. I may not post until the new year but I will let you all know what is happening and what has happened.. I'm still free-falling so expect a full post when I finally land on my feet and am able to be more specific than just saying that what I am doing at the moment is amazing. Until then, Happy Christmas & Merry New Year :) [ see what I did there?]