Throwing myself back into what I would call a normal way of life has been interesting.
Hot showers, orange juice, bacon! It’s all come back into my life. Very swiftly the time in Borneo seems like a long time ago. But also just like yesterday. I miss my Borneo family! But have found and had an awesome time in Australia for Christmas.
The last time I was in Australia was 8 years ago with my best friend Catherino. It certainly felt great to be back. Whenever you visit a place, we nest and find a home. Therefore I found it relatively easy to be back. Having 2 sets of cousins out here also helps. I initially stayed in manly-Sydney with cousin jane and husband Giovanni. Then I took the train down to Canberra a few days later to surprise mum dad Sam and Tim at the airport when they flew in from Perth. From here we had a day in Canberra with friends of mum and dads and then we hired a car and drove up to our other cousins out near the blue mountains on Christmas Eve.
A family of four boys and one girl; this was no alien environment! The boys, all grown up now are all working and/or in college and Rachel the eldest works too. All living at home it made for a great family Christmas. Even though it was very alien from what we were used to back in cublington. Hot weather did make it feel very unchristmassy. And without the usual Christmas buildup it wasn’t until Christmas Day that I truly felt the spirit of Christmas.
Christmas Day was great. We started by opening stockings Sharon had lovingly put together for us, which I wasn’t expecting! Then we had breakfast and went to church. Well I say church, it was a hill song church. The original one actually. There were at least 2000 people there and although it was less intimate than our usual Christmas Day village church service, it was pretty powerful. It was like going to a show!! Amazing band, big screens up, a good preacher. I found it thought provoking and nostalgic. Certainly I feel refreshed with regards to my faith and trust that there is a plan for my life!
After the service it was back home to prepare for a 23 person Christmas lunch. Some friends of Sharon and Mario’s from South Africa were joining us and bought along a beautiful ham. Other than this we had turkey chicken and beef. We have been literally living off this meat for the last week and a half!! The afternoon consisted of present opening, more visits from other family members and chilling out! We also spoke to family back in the UK which was really great including Chris and Matt who we were sad not to have with us for Christmas. Will have to have a doubly big one next year!!
Overall a great Christmas Day. Sharon and Mario did a great job hosting it all, and it was in fact cool to do something different.