I will never forget driving down the driveway for the first time. It was lush and green and I could hear the kookaburras laughing in the gums. Twiggy and I had just got married and had decided to move back to Adelaide and start our new life together. We wanted an oasis in the hills, after living in inner city Melbourne. We wanted to have babies, start a business and step forward into our future together.
The house was perfect. It sat on top of a hill overlooking a valley thick with trees. Koalas sat in the branches of the huge gums. The sounds of birds filled the cool air. And alongside sat a piece of land which we planned to subdivide to help us move forward financially. For six years we lived there. A pair of goats kept us company and many chickens bore us eggs. And one by one our babies came home to that house – all making the drive down the now all too familiar tree-lined driveway. Everywhere we looked held a memory.
Then one day we subdivided the block and moved down to the hill. We craved the sounds of the city, the diversity of the people, the ability to be in the centre of town drinking coffees at our favourite restaurant in the Adelaide Market. We packed up the truck and our car and our little family drove down that driveway to start a new future.
Although for the past few years we still owned the block of land, we rarely visited. This week we took the kids up there to say goodbye, as we’d finally sold it.
A memory of the past. Our family. Where new life began.
We gathered all the moments up and popped them into our memory bank. Stored in our hearts to draw on when needed. The view which brightened our souls. The chicken coop, built by our own hands. The spot we’d sat watching the flames lick the branches in a makeshift bonfire. We’d drunk wine out of plastic glasses, while the fire roared, and giggled with old friends and a friend who left us way too soon. I stood on that spot, the last time I’d seen my friend, and said a special farewell to her for the last time. I sat on the seat I’d held each child, just newborns, cradled against the cold. Now, big kids, my children sat with me laughing and whinging about the weather.
I walked the paths, stopped to pick up the muddy leaves, to admire the flowers. I stood my ground and listened to the cackling of the kookaburras I so love.
Each sound. Each sight. Each step, held a special memory. I wished the land farewell, took the hands of my children and my husband and we took that last stroll up the driveway. We won’t return.
And then we were home. Where we now create new memories.
Now life goes on. A new piece of ground beneath our feet. A place to grow tall. Where we etch each memory on the wall.
PS: The photos and video in this post were taken with an Olympus OM-D E-M10 camera. The camera is perfect for me – it’s so light, looks freaking hip and is really easy to use, even for me. I’m really liking its inbuilt ArtFilters, Wifi and a nifty image transfer option. Today I played around with the video option for the first time and it was brilliant. It was so much fun putting together the little movie. And now I have that memory captured forever.
* This is my third challenge post for the Kidspot Voices of 2014 Olympus My Family Lens Competition. I’m trying to win an Olympus OM-D E-M10 Camera. I really, really want one. I do not want to have to return my loan camera. I love it and have named it Sonny.