On the Gold Coast visiting my parents (and heading off to see The Hobbit with my dad and my sister). It would have all the makings of an awesome day, were it not for the fact that:
a) I really want to settle down and have a solid writing day after all the distractions of the holiday period (which, realistically speaking, goes on through to the end of Jan or Feb given the timing of birthdays among my family and friends), and the inability to do that is making me tetchy; and
b) I’m on the Gold Coast.
I know plenty of people who love the Coast. My parents fricken’ adore it here, which is probably one of the reasons I lived here from ages twelve to twenty-three or so. I always feel bad that I don’t come down here and visit them more often, but then I come down here and visit them, and I realize the one important problem.
I really fricken’ hate it here. Hate it in ways that are unreasonable and utterly unfair and often lead to me ranting when I should be spending time, you know, just hanging out and enjoying the company of my family. There’s something about driving two or three hours to get here that irritates the hell out of me, especially since it’s the kind of trip that used to be a one-hour drive before the Coast did whatever the fuck it did to screw up it’s already hideous roads. The kind of irritated that turns you into a complete asshole that’s not fit for being around other humans, ’cause two or three pissed-off hours in stalled traffic is plenty of time to stew on all the things you dislike about a place, and it’s generally best for everyone if I’m left alone for a few hours to cool off.
Which, you know, kind of defeats the purpose of coming down here to see my family. Very catch-22.
The narrative theme of you can’t go home again crops up again and again in our culture, and it’s always struck me as slightly redundant. Despite my occasional nostalgic moments for the Gold Coast, it remains one of my least favourite places on the planet. It’s crowded, it’s poorly designed, it’s packed to the gills with memories that I’m not particular fond of. Any nostalgia I feel is usually associated with the handful of folks I knew on the Gold Coast that I still miss occasionally. And, for a place where I spent over a decade of my life, there’s really fucking few of them.
I’ve currently locked myself into my old bedroom to get all the agro out of my system by writing and reading and listening to music. Which, now that I think of it, is kinda what I did through my entire teenage years. Hopefully by the time I emerge, I’ll be capable of acting like a human being and enjoying time spent with my family.
Catch you all when I return to civilization. Or, you know, Brisbane.