What happens when the music stops?

This is my last Saturday morning in Sydney. The sun is shining in a cloudless sky. It’s time to go for a walk along one of the stunning nearby beaches. Maybe stop for coffee and listen to the lighthearted banter of the locals enjoying their heavenly city.

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But first a blog. Normally my blogs are about writing. This time I’m reflecting on the past five months in this sunburnt country.

The highlights of this trip have been:

  • Standing in a vast gorge (Windjanna was my favourite) or on a wide outback plain, feeling tiny and insignificant in the grand scheme of things. At the same time I felt more connected than ever with the universe.

  • The constantly changing scenery. From towering forests to wild coastlines to dusty red roads, Australia is a dramatic country.

  • The fabulous animals, from the marsupials to the reptiles but above all, the birds. We’ve seen emus and brolgas, parrots, lorikeets, cockatoos, pelicans, and flocks of wild budgerigars. And hundreds of raptors in the drought-ravaged outback.

  • The brilliant outback night sky where the stars spread out like diamonds on velvet, unsullied by the light pollution of cities.

  • Driving hundreds of kilometres of empty highways with the man I love, with time to think, sing, laugh, and listen.

With my Australian-set novel Outback Promise being released by HarperCollins on 1st November 2015, this adventure became more significant than ever. It renewed my affinity for the sun-flattened plains and how the silent endless horizon heals the soul.

Often the pace of our travel compelled us to move from one place or another before we realized its true heartfelt significance. But isn’t that life itself? How many golden moments sift through our hands like sand, only to be appreciated in retrospect?