Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Australia Day in the UK.

It's Australia Day. And for many Australians, myself included, that doesn't really mean much.

Growing up, it was a public holiday which meant a day off school. But it wasn't a day we "celebrated" as such. No one wished you a Happy Australia Day, we didn't put flags up, we didn't do anything special or eat a particular meal. It didn't really seem to have much depth at all, apart from some civic fireworks or maybe a local 'Australia Day' branded concert or something.

But like Halloween, which also had no real meaning when I grew up, it's starting to gain traction as an event, to become something more than what it was.

I'm not going to get into any discussion on whether the date should be moved, apart from it absolutely should. I'm not posting this as some kind of national pride thing. I'm writing this because I'm currently sitting in a small English village in the middle of winter and some English friends have wished me a Happy Australia Day.

Sure, I have played it up a little. In our weekly meeting at work on Monday, I was asked what was happening this week. Rather than commence with my deadlines and plans, I told them Tuesday was Burns Night and Wednesday was Australia Day, which provided them with a fantastic opportunity to celebrate me as a colleague. Without a pause, our meeting moderator replied, "We do, Steve, every single day."

But I suppose all the posts on social media have made me think a little about Australia. And my family and friends. And that it's still not easily visitable.

The world is a different place since I last visited Australia more than two years ago. It was just before the pandemic, and if I had gone with my original plan to visit in March of 2020, I wouldn't have been back in around 4 years.

I love Australia, and I miss my family and friends, but in some ways I feel more at home in the UK than I do in Australia. I feel a connection with the land here. And I've felt it every single time I've arrived. I especially feel it when I'm up in Scotland. 

But I would dearly love to visit Australia sooner rather than later.

Sunday, January 9, 2022

Shhhhh. The Secret Project.

I'm working on a secret project at the moment. Nobody has told me it's a secret, and there's nothing particularly special about it. But for personal reasons, I choose not to share it at this time.

It's something I've thought about for a long time now and have decided to take the plunge. It's something writing relating I want to do for my own enjoyment, and I guess for my own benefit, and it's something which I will enjoy.

I often see writers post on social media that they're working on a secret project. I must admit to sometimes wondering why the project is secret. Is it because they've been asked not to talk about it, or because it might not eventuate, or are they simply trying to build an air of mystery around the life of a writer?

Yes, I get curious when they post about these projects, but I don't ever really remember any later official announcement that made me thing "Aha! That's what they were working on!" But don't worry, I will share this project when the time is right. I'll even make it easy for you to identify and recognise by starting with, "Do you remember that secret project I mentioned?"

I might have to swear a couple of people to secrecy, though, as there are elements that will require advice and guidance.  Does any know where I left the cone of silence?