Happy Friday my lovelies!
‘Why don’t we move to Maine’ was part of an impromptu conversation I had with myself today. My husband and I have been doing lots of imaginary house shopping of late (sometimes I wish I could just click ‘add to cart’). We are domestic expats in that we still live in Australia but for the past few years have lived on the opposite side of the continent to where we are both from, and when that distance is marked by a great, mysterious, iconic expanse of desert and outback known as the Nullarbor, it really does sometimes feel like we live in another country.
Aside from St. George, Maine, USA, our imaginary house shopping has been for idyllic Victorian and Federation cottages and terraces in our hometown of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Well my hometown is actually not even a town but a tiny country place in the rural reaches of Victoria, but my husband is Melbourne born-and-bred and I lived in the picturesque city for many years so it really is home for us both. The idea of ‘home’ for us is complex, as I suppose it is for many people. We are both independent and love to travel, to explore new places and would happily move to any place, anywhere in the world, if it attracted us (seduced us even) and as long as we were together. Yet we both come from close families: we miss them but we are a strong unit unto ourselves.
We often talk about eventually returning to Melbourne. It is funny though because for us it is as much the city or entity of Melbourne itself as it is our friends and families that beseeches us to return. We really love the organic machine that is Melbourne to the point that when we travel we by default say ‘we are from Melbourne’ even though we have not lived there in a long time.
Yet we also often talk about moving somewhere else entirely. Take this classic east coast American house in Maine. We have not been to Maine but there is something about the ashy chocolate weatherboard houses, the proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, the coastline and hinterland worthy of many great novels, that begins to spin our own special story of Maine, deep in our imaginations. And yet the particular dark greys and greens of Melbourne, and Victoria, are another compelling story. Bluestone and gum trees, foggy clouds low and wet in wintertime, squinting blue sunlight and custard yellow beaches in summertime. Raison toast and coffee in the skinny laneways of the CBD early in the morning, rooftop cinemas and riverside bars watching the sun sink low in the afternoons.
I am not sure what the point of this particular ramble I am trying to make … perhaps just that there are so many beautiful places in the world to explore – and I want to explore them all!
PS the house really is for sale!
*Photo by Craig Dilger for The New York Times.