It’s thunder. I know it’s thunder, I’ve been told a storm is coming, it sounds like thunder, I know it’s thunder – but my mind is trying to make me think otherwise.

I know my PTS and anxieties have been coming back a little bit this week. Emotions moving, checking the news a bit more frequently / aware that I am, certain thoughts playing around in my head etc.

Tonight there is a really big low system coming through which has been forecast for a few days now to bring winds, rain, thunder and lightning. It’s the kind of thunder that rattles across the sky from one side to the next, and it started just over 15 minutes ago. I heard it rumbling in the distance whilst I was in the shower, and I could feel my head noticing it and trying to play funny buggers. It’s a loud sort of rumble that I used to train? myself to look out for. Train isn’t a good word, but it’s what was happening and I couldn’t control it. It’s been getting closer since the shower, and I just saw the first lot of lightning. Within 10 seconds the thunder started, which I can’t remember the formula for but I think means it’s about 3-4kms away? The rain is beginning to fall heavier, just as I write this sentence it is starting to pound harder. Hail is meant to come with it. This system has already put South Australia out of power – a whole Australian state!

I’ve just turned my light off, and unplugged my computer before writing. I think I should unplug my phone too, just in case. Here comes the rain. It’s falling hard. It would be saturating if you were out in it. I’m wondering where my camera is. Another lot of lighting. It sounds more like a storm now, seeing as there is rain etc to go with it. This thunder though, it’s shook my window a couple of times. It’s not suprising it makes me question. My psychologist in Australia said that I will be hyper-vigiliant to things now, so it’s to be expected I suppose. With the change of stability and cirucmstances coming up I’m not really that shocked that I’m feeling a few different things.

This morning though, I was so excited. I was smiling so hard I could feel it all the way through my body. It hit me just before and on the way to work (about a 3 minute walk) that today was my last day. I would not have to put my uniform on again, or walk to the supermarket to a timeframe. All throughout the morning I was feeling pretty chuffed, fully aware that everything I was doing was the last time I would have to do it. It’s quite a surreal feeling really. I have left this place a few times now, but each time I don’t plan on coming back. The employers are great for they have had me back each time I have asked, and I have really appreciated it. This time I was only meant to be back in Australia for seven weeks, and had said that I could work for six. The first week it was over 40C and a heat wave, so having come from a European winter I was hiding inside in the airconditioning. That six weeks though, well I ended up working for seven months.

I didn’t plan this, I planned to fly back to the UK on April 19. I had bought a return ticket from over there and that was it. Well I soon changed that flight to late May, as I did not feel ready to return in April. May came and that too felt too soon, so I had to wave goodbye to 500 odd dollars as my ticket could not be extended any further. Then there were plans to work in the French Pyrenees for September basically. It would have started late August and gone for four weeks, building stone walls high above the world. I decided that wasn’t such a great idea in the end, and had to cancel it as well.

This time though, I am due to leave the country with a childhood friend of mine. It feels different knowing there will be someone to go with, and who understands my situation too. I have back up plans incase they are needed, but really I won’t know until I go, until we get there.

This isn’t what I planned to write about tonight though, and my fifteen minutes is already up.

I was going to write about today, what I did, going to work and completing my last day, farewelling friends, customers and colleagues etc. I basically did every job you could do – clean, cook chickens, take them off, clean machine, ends, fill, necks, frames, dates, meat ends, clean, close, etc. Once I finished work Maddi did a little song and dance, whilst I tried to video it. It was pretty great, but I don’t think anything will exceed what she and Lachi did yesterday. I was at the top of the stairs looking over the workplace having signed out for the end of the day and they both broke in to song and dance, clapping and I was clicking. It was like a musical all for me, and it was fabulous. Tonight’s little encore will have to suffice. After work finished and dinner / chats I went around to a friends. Margie and I spoke of travels, photography, post-exhibition things, Scotland, photography, and more. She thanked me for what I had done with the camera club and the help I had offered, for which I said I did not need anything, but was given a new memory card which was very nice of her. Having heard the story about how she and Chris lost 9 rolls of film from their travel in Scotland in 1989, I proclaimed that the new card was for Scotland – and that in this time in one week when we are travelling there, and whatever we find ourselves doing there, I shall photograph on that card  as a way to acknowledge what had happened.

I’m a bit calmer now with the thunder. I’m not actually sure of the last time I saw or heard a really good thunderstorm. There haven’t been all that many really, just lots and lots of rain. Which is why the river is currently flooding, something which I hope to photograph tomorrow or the next day. I’ve got a bit of a list of jobs to do tomorrow, as I now have just two days to get myself organised and packed to travel to the other side of the world. We head to Melbourne Saturday morning and fly out that night, can’t believe it’s finally here!

I continue to do my 15 minutes of French in the morning before I get up, and it’s going well. Did a quick redo of this mornings pronouns tonight before coming to bed and was happy to make only one mistake.

Life is basically all unknowns really. And that’s where the fun lies… looking forward to it.


Written;
From: 11.28pm – 11.50pm
In: Hay, Australia