I thought I’d pick up writing my blog again, especially now that I am in London. In a way, blog-writing is also strangely obsolete as we now freely share our thoughts and experiences in little chunks through social media. Those who are connected to me on Facebook probably know that I am embarking on a three-month stint in London, an opportunity from work that is too good to pass. I am here based in Covent Garden, London – liaising with many corporate sponsors of the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute as well as continuing my research away from the office and the distractions. Yes, London has its distractions too – but at least they are the welcome distractions that I need so I can get out of the apartment from time to time. The Institute rents an apartment here that is used by the researchers who are sent into orbit so I am now here for the next three months, a stone’s throw away from the theatres and the hustle and bustle of London.
It’s a strange feeling to be back in Europe. The last time I was here was in 2008, before I left the Adelaide Bank as my last hurrah. I love Europe, with its different languages and accents. I was on transit in Dubai for a couple of hours and I was overhearing languages and accents that I recognised – and that made me smile.
Maybe traveling and being on the road are written in my genes. Maybe the adventurous spirit of my grandfather who sailed down to Indonesia from China – in search of a better life – is now passed down to me. I have always been independent and antsy from time to time. It is different though to be back on the road – as a married man. This will be the longest period that I’m separated from Yani after we got married at the end of 2009. I was feeling a bit apprehensive as well (although hugely excited) about this journey – it’s like putting back an old cloak that I loved so much, wishing that it would still fit me. Now that I’m here, I am glad that my sojourning cloak fits me like an old pair of gloves. It’s great to walk around in Covent Garden, admiring the old buildings, and the humdrum of life in London. I still have the enthusiasm of a child and yet equipped with the wisdom of my life’s experiences and my past travels. I wrote on my Facebook page that “Opportunities are best enjoyed with both arms wide open” so I’m embracing this opportunity – hugely thankful and looking forward to soak up all of the experiences that it brings.
As for Yani – she will (un)fortunately enjoy her freedom in Adelaide, taking care of the house and Indy before she joins me at the end of April, at the end of my pop-up office. We will then a two-week holiday in Paris, Portugal, Spain, and Amsterdam before we resume our lives in Adelaide.