This is not goodbye.
You can set out to write a chapter with an idea of where it will go, but often the story has other plans. You end up in a different, unexpected, place. Sometimes it’s better than the destination you had in mind. Sometimes more challenging. Sometimes it’s so different it throws the rest of your plot out of joint. But you adjust. reframe, persevere. There are no wrong answers.
Life is like that too. Chapters we set out to write rarely end where we mean them to. They shape us as much as we shape them. One such chapter brought me to Australia in 2011. Now that chapter is coming to an end.
I’ll be leaving Australia in an hour.
Initially I’ll head back to the UK, back to London, a town I thought I’d said goodbye to. I should have known better. There are no goodbyes, just chapters.
I came to Australia with an idea of where I’d end up. Married, happy, whole. That’s not the story that transpired, but that’s okay. I count my soon to be ex-wife among my best friends, and for that I’m thankful. The opportunities I’ve had here, the experiences, the lessons I’ve learned. There was no waste, nothing I’d edit out.
And so it goes: Another country, another continent, another chapter. I have some wonderful opportunities ahead, and who knows where they’ll take me. This is not goodbye.
This is I’ll see you next time.