As she left on her great adventure, Himself and I were both impressed by the send off she received. In this age of disposable technology, superficial facebook style friendships and deteriorating values it was heartening to see a whole bunch of her friends come to see her off.
It speaks to the regard they have for her.
Another couple turned up shortly afterwards.
(I know. Do not ask me what they are wearing. It is some kind of fashion statement.)
And even though her flight was delayed by 40 minutes and she had to check her bags through gate 13 (!!!!!!)............
......there were still a sizeable group remaining by the time she eventually made it down the gangway.
Even Himself, that inveterate avoider of all things emotional, came; although he claimed it was to support me (that works too).
And after she'd gone, the kids walked and chatted to us as we made that long, desolate walk back to the car park. I gotta say, Smirnoff aside, they are a nice bunch.
So it has been two weeks now since she left. People keep asking if I miss her and it's a strange question. She has spent a lot of time away from me since we got back to Australia in 2003 and she first went interstate to spend a week with her dad. After that first traumatic trip as an unaccompanied minor she took to the whole process like a duck to water and rarely looked back.
Which is exactly as it should be.
I am so proud of her independent spirit and her gutsy 'have a go' attitude. On the other hand, I am exceptionally grateful for facebook, Viber and Skype and the messages she sends me at 3 in the morning when she is awake and wavering over 'crucial' decisions. I love the emoticons that arrive randomly and the pouting selfie she sends when we have been accidentally disconnected...
This trip echoes the one I took in 1978 at a similar age. Every excitement, frustration and anxiety she experiences brings back a wealth of memories for me. I know I came back from my 9 months overseas with a far greater appreciation of my life here in Australia. I wonder how the BA will reflect on this time in years to come?
No more departure posts now.......