One of the funny things about growing up in lots of different places, and none of them being where your parents are from (which were two different places anyway) is that it makes it very hard to imagine feelings of connection with land. I can appreciate some landscapes as welcoming and others as hostile, but I always feel wistful when I read and hear about people who have a sense of a very personal feeling of connection and belonging. I have no firsthand experience of anything like that.
But I do sometimes get little glimmers, and some of them come to me through mist.
This mist was unexpected, really. Ashley and I had headed out to Cape Woolamai thinking we would walk along the beach, slightly prepared for rain but secretly hoping for sunshine. Instead, as the fog mingled with sea spray, we had the wonderful feeling that we might have been about to walk over the end of the earth.
The wind was very strong, enough that you could lean your whole body weight into it. Also enough that you could fear, reasonably, being blown over the cliffs and into the sea. I think perhaps there was a glimmer in that too.
I think these beautiful curves of sea water were worth the risk of damage to my boots, but they dried off and seem fine if you were wondering.
I don’t suppose this beautiful country can ever be my homeland in the true sense of the term. But I love it more than I can say.