What were you doing five years ago today? As the holiday season began? Where were you? Who were you with? What did you want? What did you have?
Five years ago, it was 2005. I was living (rather unhappily, for the most part) back in Sydney. A few months previously, I’d lost my Grandpa, and threw myself into my studies and in supporting my favourite Aussie Rules team, the Sydney Swans.
I remember a lot about the day my Grandpa died — the urgency in Dad’s voice when he woke me up; Mum encouraging me to touch his hand and talk to him; and one of the most memorable moments from that day was sitting outside in the sunshine with my siblings, chatting about the good times with Pa. It’s probably the closest we have ever been. We must have sat there for three hours, the sun on our skin, lounging on the porch swing… It’s a beautiful memory from a bittersweet moment.
So Christmas 2005 was a little overwhelming, being the first Christmas without him and his pineapple ham, cooked to perfection. Mum did really well in coordinating every second of “happy fun” time, and then sent everyone home before we had a chance to pause and remember who was missing from the table. We all do what we can to cope, and I probably would have done exactly the same. Time doesn’t necessarily heal all wounds, but it helps. I still find myself thinking about him, and missing him.
Back in 2005, I was single with had no interest in complicating my life. I worked at Australian Associated Press watching sport and typing lots, and drove the cutest little purple Mitsubishi Mirage, much like this one:
Christ, I loved that car! It represented so much for me: freedom, independence, love. Good times zipping around the Eastern seaboard… it became very much part of me. I was so sad to hear it had passed on.
I was really involved in the UNSW Baseball Softball Club, and loved kicking back with my teammates. I’d usually be working Friday and Saturday night, so I never had much of a life, but I loved sport so It was a reasonable trade off.
I always had a burning desire to travel and escape the confines of Australia, but I still had some stuff to do before all the pieces of the puzzle were to fall into place.
2005 was also the year I chopped off my hair, which was such a massive deal for me, but one of the most liberating things I have ever done. Plus, I’ve saved a bundle in conditioner alone!
Megan (aka Princess Lasertron) raised a great point when she said :
“I wonder if I spend more or less time than most people remembering.”
I live a lot in my head, in my own world. And I don’t really care if it’s normal, but sometimes I wonder if others travel places in time, in the physical world. Do you?
When I am alone, or reading or thinking, I travel roads. Random roads, remembering which roads feed into the road I am “on”, and which roads I take to get to X, Y or Z. I remember bits and pieces that tie these roads to the a particular part of time: certain billboards, an accident, the time I was buzzed right there by an airliner.
Lately, I try to remember all the roads around home, and what they look like: street signs, trees, what the noticeboard at the local school will say when I go past. Mostly its subconscious so I listen/take in information and place the words on the road I am travelling. So often when I regurgitate information, I will return to the road I was on when I took in the information… strange, huh? Do you do something like this?
Other times, I just go back to a moment in time, like a reconstructed vignette. Today, I revisited the lonely moments in Dublin when I returned there to work after my US visa expired. The rosy pink cheeks from the cold, the cobblestone alleys, the warm cups of coffee, watching the ferry arrive with cars and trucks and people from Wales, going through the day barely speaking to anyone… it was lonely, but I wasn’t sad. Not having The American with me made it a completely different city.
What do you remember about your life in back in 2005?