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Three weeks ago we went to Australia. We’d have been at Heathrow around this time, and there are many many things to write about. We arrived in Australia at midnight the following day, and back to Toodyay around 1am on the Thursday.

The things I don’t want to forget:

The quiet. Space and time to think about things. Clear skies where you can see the milky way and billions of stars. The sound of frogs, kookaburras and more as night falls and the house moves into darkness. There is no light pollution where the in-laws live so you can see everything. Even if my camera isn’t great, it picked up this:

Milky way from Toodyay

It’s also quite cut off, so you don’t have much of a social life. I don’t anyway so it was no big deal. I was more than happy to sit around playing Scrabble and drinking wine. It was all about family.

Family. While they’re my family through marriage, they’re H’s family by birth. I think she was amazed at how many Aunties and Uncles she has, as well as cousins and other relations – we ran out of time to meet my dad’s cousin (my only Aussie relative in Perth) – but we have lots of family out there. H has never really experienced having a big family and I know she loved it. She had lots of people who really cared for her – as well as two grandparents.

We were busy every day doing something. It was tiring but good. Once the jetlag had gone we’d sleep for ten hours a night which is unheard of as we live in London where you have to have as little sleep as possible to get things done in a day. Which is another eye opener as Shaun finally said “I could live here again”. While we don’t have plans, we both want to move, so it will happen one day. I don’t know when, but to get to that stage is a huge step. I’m thinking in 2-3 years maybe. Not sooner.

The smell of the bush. It smells so good. I want my toilet to smell of that fresh eucalyptus smell with a bit of outdoors thrown in. I wish they could bottle it up and send it to me – it was fresh air and I crave it. Especially now we’re back in London. The asthma inhaler has come out again.

Australia was so bright and colourful and sunny and warm – and they’re having winter. We got back to London and it was dull and grey – and we’re having summer. It felt depressing to be back – though I’ll put that down to holiday blues for now.

We brought an entire suitcase back of things we’d bought – and still stayed well below our allowance. Singapore Airlines have a very generous 30kg allowance. Maybe next time we’ll actually take presents… on the way out we didn’t even have half.

Kangaroos. I will forever be fascinated by them. The way they hop around anywhere they bloody well want – like in front of our car (this is the second time this has happened and why I’m nervous about driving in Australia). More often than not they’re just hanging out in a paddock on the drive back to Toodyay.

Sunsets. You cannot beat a WA sunset. Shaun and I would often drive around Wandoo Hills to get to the other side to catch the sunset, a mixture of darks and reds.

The beach. There’s nothing like fresh sea air to clear the mind.

Drive through bottle shops. Buying beer without getting out of your car? Great!

Drive through coffee shops. Buying coffee without getting out of your car? Oh yes!

Target selling acceptably brilliant clothes? Oh yes. I spent around £60 there.

Jetlag only taking two days to clear. Really. But poor little H waking up at 2am (I did too) and sitting reading a book as she thought it was the morning. I stayed up with her until she fell asleep again, so didn’t get a lot of sleep that night.

Fremantle.

Sleep.

The smells. The sounds.

I’m really missing it this time. We could have done another two weeks out there and still not done everything we’d planned. I would decorate this post with photos, but I’m too tired. Maybe another No Words Picture or two instead. It’s currently half past midnight there so I’m expecting to crash any time now.