I’ve gotten really used to being a backpacker and doing the whole hostel, blogging, sightseeing rigamarole that comes along with it. But here in Australia I’m less of that and more of a visitor…or foreigner? or I’m not really sure what to call it but it’s different.
I’m staying at a legit apartment (in Port Melburne, right on the beach) and I have friends (Four! Three that I met in India and one that I met yesterday at the phone store) and I’m just sort of living life: Making plans, going out, meeting people…eating cereal & milk out of a fridge for breakfast and finding neighborhood fro-yo spots.
There’s no more Asian babies to hold or 20 hour train rides or cheap street food. The foreigners inviting me into their homes are not what I’m used to.
It’s all very nice, but also very strange. For some reason my days feel long and my bag feels small. Instead of other travelers I’m meeting people who have closets and homes and real jobs and real lives and I don’t entirely fit in.
It’s been really easy to adopt the identity of traveler, but now without that guise—and without that role to play—I feel lost. I have none of the things that make me ME: my friends, family, job, apartment.
So even though everyone here looks like me and speaks my language, this is perhaps the most difficult and challenging place I’ve traveled so far.
Yesterday I felt like crying because I missed Pinkberry so I guess you could say I’ve been slightly emotional. I have a lot of questions I’m trying to answer and things I’m trying to figure out but it’s definitely a new phase of my journey that I’m entering. Bear with me?