I am at Amnesty’s office now, and feeling really pleased with the new campaign monitor system they have set up. The newsletter definitely looks much more professional and catchy after the web people did their magic. These human rights people (and those I met at Adelaide PEN’s event) are also passionately happy about Syu Kyi’s release in a weirdly emotionally-involved manner, which I find incomprehensible — how did they ever get so entangled in the life of a person they’ve never met? Or maybe in the ideas they fight for? It’s interesting and boring to watch at the same time: interesting because strange emotions fascinate me; boring because I am detached. But then some of these people have gone to jail for their writing, so maybe it is not so strange after all.
A bunch of us went to see off Sheldon at the airport yesterday. Tiff and I, we said it was our departure rehearsal. We’d walk through the same doors with our luggages. We’d check in at the same counters. And we’d have many many rehearsals sending off a whole bunch of other people before our turn finally comes, and ours would be perfect. : )
When I bring up my phone calendar, I no longer have to scroll down to the 11th of December. It’s right there on the screen, just three weeks below. What a good thought, a good thought that makes me come alive.
I have not been homesick here in Adelaide — no crying fits over the phone, no sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach on special occassions — none of those moods that can easily descend on wanderers far from home. But this excitement of going home, it is tangible.
It is an emotion which conjures up special images: a Campbell soup commercial from my younger days featuring a classical song my mum was teaching me at that time, people waiting at the airport calling out my name and carrying my bag for me, mum’s homemade pumpkin soup already frozen in the freezer awaiting my consumption…and shabby home clothes I don’t have the heart to discard.
Alongside the dread of sweltering heat, the work needed to restore a flood-damaged house, and relationships I’m afraid would have become awkward and foreign, a lovely sense of anticipation builds as the date draws near.
The thought of baby photos destroyed by the recent flood awaiting my rescue compells me to reach out and save the memories. Familiar faces that I just have an urge to see and feel and touch again beckon to me. There is a need inside to make sure they have not just become two dimensional pictures, names on Facebook, or animated figures in Skype windows that black out once the windows are shut. Or are they really just those things? There’s an impulsive need to make sure the web of connections I spun for two years back home were real. People with real skin and real faces and real laughs and not just romanticised memories.
And I need to pinch my sister’s chubby face. CUBIT.