Adeiu – Adios – Arrivederci – Au revoir – Bon voyage – Cheerio – Ciao – Farewell – Hasta la vista – Hasta mañana – Nos vemos – Salut – See ya – So long!
The language used doesn’t really matter when the meaning of the word is the same and for me at the moment, “goodbye” is the hardest word I have to say.
We’ve done this once before. Packed up our possessions and moved elsewhere when work and a much-needed change of life and lifestyle saw us move from Townsville, in Queensland’s north, to Brisbane, the state’s capital, situated in the middle of a region known colloquially as the Great South East.
We arrived in the middle of winter when the average day time temperature felt colder than Townsville’s overnight minimum and we spent the next three months praying for the weather to warm up. The house we rented had an aspect that was not conducive to attracting warmth and we didn’t own a heater. At least we had lots of blankets and plenty of warm clothes courtesy of our one and only holiday to the Victorian alpine region two years earlier.
Even though being in the snow may have been the coldest I had ever been in my life (up to that point anyway), the cold I felt when we arrived in Brisbane was different – we weren’t on holidays, we were living in the midst of frigid, frosty and freezing air that permeated our bones. I can still see the girls going off the school wearing gloves, beanies and turtle necked skivvies under their uniforms.
At the time we made the move to Brisbane, our daughters were young and (we decided) able to survive the emotional trauma of leaving their friends. Our eldest felt it the most, but being the bubbly, lovable girl she was (and still is), she quickly made new friends. Our other two daughters were much younger and I guess for them it felt like a big adventure or permanent holiday.
But generally, holidays come to an end.
Tomorrow morning, Friday October 31, 2014 at 10 am, having packed and secured our possessions in our mini home and hitched it to our car, Dean and I will quietly drive out of the caravan park where we have stayed for the last 4 1/2 weeks and head up the coast to the Dicky Beach Caravan Park where we will enjoy a week of relaxation at Deans favourite surf beach.
We will return to Brisbane for three nights after that so I can go to QPAC to see Professor Brian Cox and attend the Toastmasters District 69 Semi Annual Conference.
On Monday November 10, 2014, devoid of any fuss or fanfare, once again we will hitch our mini home to our car, but this time we will head south – into the great unknow – leaving behind our eldest daughter and all the friends we’ve made while we called Brisbane home.
Brisbane has been good to us and our girls. The last 21 years and more have been fun, sometimes frustrating, but above, they’ve been fabulous years.
I know, as we drive away, heading off into the great unknown, I’ll have more than a tear or two roll down my cheek as I silently say farewell. Despite what Elton John had to say about it, I’ve always found “goodbye” to be the hardest word.