Home is where the heart is…
When travelling, you get to know a lot of places. Some are nicer than others, some you instantly fall in love with, others I would rather skip the whole area. And some… you didn’t know how much you loved them until you get back there, and this feeling settles into your body…
… the feeling of butterflies, happiness, and that you feel calm and excited at the same time.
Some places mean a lot to me because, somehow, they make me feel at home.
I used to have this at my hometown in the Netherlands, where I lived by myself for six years. As soon as I saw the skyline rising up at the horizon, the feeling of home entered my body. I knew the place from the inside and outside. It felt like it was my place like I had to say something there and I was part of it.
Now a couple of years later this changed. Or in other words, I changed, and now we don’t fit together anymore.
So apparently you can outgrow your favourite place. I still like it there, but it doesn’t feel I belong there anymore. While travelling, I changed and got to know different places.
I think my heart still lays in Australia.
In Brisbane, I had this feeling of home as well. It started slow, just as a city that I liked, it was okay and I had been there a few weeks. I left and continued my travels, but later I returned to Brisbane to work there. I got to know the place better and better during some more months that I lived there. Slowly I fell in love with Brisbane and eventually this place felt so much better than my home town in the Netherlands. I also don’t live in Brisbane anymore at this moment and still if I had to choose what would feel like home Brisbane is much closer than my old hometown.
Later I lived in Portugal for a few months (love that country, but Australia still wins). I lived in Lisbon for a while, but the longest time I lived in Sintra, a historic place surrounded by beautiful nature. Amazing place but so many tourists. With Lisbon around the corner, and secretly always in my mind, I returned there often, just to visit.
Around my birthday a friend came over, and we spend the week in Lisbon, loving the city and the surroundings. Never realized that I missed Sintra, but when I came back to Sintra after that week, I suddenly got this feeling. Kind of afterwards homesick feeling, like; ‘so happy that I am back, missed you so much’ feeling. I was also surprised, I never knew I felt that way about Sintra.
… sometimes you don’t know how much you love a place until you return.
But maybe the lesson for me is not to lose myself in a place. I love travelling, and I love getting to know new places. Often when I am back for a while ‘living the normal life’ I miss those places. But perhaps I just miss the wandering me, I miss the adventure. Maybe I’m just homesick to the travelling life.
By the way, the feeling of homesick to that amazing adventure you just had is familiar. I have had it, and I know a lot of people who had it. You have a few options here…