let’s meet here again
I rudely presume that my blog readers naturally gravitated over to instagram and subscribe to my newsletter but, perhaps you don’t? If so, I thought it best to get back here and start posting more regularly because I miss it and also, there’s a whole story here and it seems sad for it to finish so abruptly without explanation.
Since I last posted, we made the decision to stay in Tasmania and put down some roots. These kind of decisions are never clear cut; there is not definitive reasons why we stayed, more a long string of realisations that led us along and eventually encouraged us to think that yes, we could live here. This year has been a settling season for us and we’ve been living in a rental perched on a hill since April; an autumn, winter and now spring of new routines and homelife which is altogether ordinary and quite lovely, too. I’ve spent the past seven months finishing one book and writing the next; I’ve written every day, either at my desk or in bed and it is all I’ve thought of – first thing in the morning, last thing at night and all the moments in between. It’s a dream come true and also, a lot of hard work; hours upon hours, sometimes writing from morning till night, writing, deleting and then writing some more.
Needless to say, my desk is littered with open books, post-it notes, tea cups and handwritten reminders only I can decipher. It’s an array of clutter yet I know where everything is an as I sit here with my noise-cancelling headphones on listening to a spotify playlist that sounds a little like it comes from the far-reaching islands of the Scottish Hebrides, I write about pregnancy and birth and all the small and almighty parts of that journey. I am often interrupted by Marigold asking for snacks, I sometimes sit back with a sore head and can’t see my way through the next paragraph but I persist, because books only get written from immense amounts of persistence.
Today I walked into town and passed my favourite house which was one of the first built in this area. The owner, Margaret, was gardening so I started chatting to her and she let me take photos of her front garden which is an absolute picture. She talked me through each flower and when she’d planted them and those that had self-seeded and sprung to life in surprising colours. I’ve met a lot of my neighbours this way, stopping to chat while they’ve been pottering and now I know their names and sometimes when I’m passing they give me lemons or mint or fresh blooms to take home.
There’s a whole chapter on gardens and libraries in my soon-to-be released new book; I write about the comfort we found in community gardens as we travelled, the reprieve they offered when the stark highways started to hurt our eyes. It’s apt that as we’ve settled I’ve met neighbours as they’ve dug in the dirt, stopping to chat to me once I remarked on their daisies.
I started writing this today after Kate, from the blog we all know and love – Foxs Lane – started blogging again after a two-year hiatus. From around 2008-2018, there was a very strong, supportive blogging community that was altogether a lot more lo-fi than social media currently is. We shared our achievements and our failures but mostly, we wrote about all the ordinary, everyday things we were currently navigating. We photographed cups of tea next to a hearty slice of cake, the vegetables we’d grown and harvested, our children on beaches and in gardens and reading books, painting, growing, eating, cuddling.
All this to say, I have Kate to thank for getting me back here and hopefully I can make it a more regular thing.
In the meantime, I’d love you to sign up to my newsletter which I usually send monthly (but I’m aiming to send a little more frequently than that). And if you want to read a bit about what it was like to live and travel in a caravan for over two years, the layers of anxiety and overwhelm that I unravelled and the lessons learnt from spending most days under big skies, you can pre-order my book here. Pre-orders really do help with the success of a book so I’m grateful for your support.