In 2020 I left home (once more!) to visit my son in Canada. Practically the day after I arrived the world went into lockdown and I had a choice to either catch the last plane back to Australia or stay out on the proverbial limb again.

The Tree of Life symbol represents our personal development, uniqueness and individual beauty. Just as the branches of a tree strengthen and grow upwards to the sky, we too grow stronger, striving for greater knowledge, wisdom and new experiences as we move through life. At least that’s what I keep telling myself!

This trip was supposed to be straightforward, i.e., it had a focus, which was that I would spend a month with my son and then move on to Europe where I planned to settle for a while and grow my retreat business.

Well, that didn’t happen did it? Noooo! And here it is 2021 and my plans are still no further advanced, except that they have evolved and I have found temporary residency finally!

This in itself was a feat as I soon found out during the previous months, actually nearly a year. Even in these dire times, countries still require that you apply from your country of residence for a visa to reside in their country. How can you do that if you can’t get home??? Wake up world! If we are expected to change with the times then you too should be trying to pick up the pace and get with times.

As I journeyed from country to country, I realized that I was trying to find a familiarity with a time gone by which I had missed for so long. What I found was that the world was inflicted by a virus far more insidious than Covid-19. In each country I was saddened to see that the telltale signs of greed and corruption had seeped into the lives of innocent people and families now driven by a need to survive instead of living in joyful union with each other.

Even countries like Greece or Italy long renowned for their hospitality and familial ties had been tainted by the avarice of progress, leaving their citizens more focused on the $ in their hand than the need in the heart of the giver for connection.

This is not a story of a yearning for the “good old days”, but it is a cry for remembering what we have lost or forfeited in our desperate need to succeed. In fact, this pressure is an external one that has no place in our beingness but it is the structure set up to make us feel like failures if we don’t measure up. Talk to any of the nonnas and papas. They will tell you how much they miss the conversations and friendship and satisfaction they got from people ‘way back’ in their era.

I love travel but I also love home. If my home is with the people of the world then please, let us be kind to one another…