Roma was the first place that I’d had phone reception for a few days. As I savoured my steak breakfast, I answered text messages and checked in with the outside world. My mental processes of the last few days had been very practical – I’d been thinking about rain, and floodwaters, and not faceplanting in the sand, and whether the roads would be open. I hadn’t thought about my existential troubles, about whether I was happy or good enough or pretty enough or doing the right thing; I hadn’t thought about the career I’d walked away from, or whether I’d set in train a series of unfortunate events which might lead to my untimely demise. It had been a relief.

I also hadn’t checked in with anyone, or told them where I was for the last few days, and that’s a wonderful feeling – not being obligated to check in, not carrying around the weight of other people’s possessiveness. It’s not that I don’t have anyone who loves me or cares about my welfare – on the contrary, I have a couple of people who love me enough to want me to feel free. I know they will be there, with all their love, whenever I resurface, and that is the most generous gift that I can ever imagine.

So I ate my steak (thanks again, Donna!) and sent my love and my news to a couple of people, and considered myself lucky.

By the time I’d finished eating, the sun had brought a flash of warmth and light to the afternoon. What had seemed like a day destined to end cold and early was suddenly a day only half done.

I wandered down to the river to see the sun on the trunks of the inundated white gums, and then went to investigate the road to Mitchell. Sure enough, the creek on the edge of town had subsided and the road was open; Beastie splashed on through and we were on the road again.

As I headed West, I could see that I was riding out from under an enormous shelf of cloud. The road ahead was sunlit, and the horizon was flat and open and flooded in colour. I felt my spirits soar as I left the coast, the rainclouds, and most of Australia’s population behind.


0 thoughts on “Into the light

  1. geoffkeys says:

    “….. left most of Australia’s population behind.” Roma definitely has that feel to it. The border between ‘busy and bugger all’ was the way I saw it.

  2. nittyangeles3677 says:

    Luved that last pic, with grasslands and clouds in the sky…

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