Coming Home

Last weekend we went up to the bach in Arthur Pass. The bach has been in the extended family since the 1960’s, and is called Rough Creek Lodge. It’s a very rustic, basic sort of a place and is full of memories. There is a photo of me in the hut book when I was 6 months old. There is no other house that I was that young at that I can still go to.

We used to go and stay up there when I was a kid, go for long bush walks, and play board games when it rained. We go back there now two or three times a year, and it really does feel like coming home. The mountains, alpine rivers and the beach forest made such an impression on my childhood, and they now bring me such a sense of peace and connection with the land.

I think of Arthur’s Pass now as my spiritual home, a timeless unchanging place that I can always return to. Standing outside at night, hearing the distant river rush and looking up over the dark forested mountains to the bright stars undimmed by city lights you can see the Milky way stretching right across the sky.

Houses come and go but kiwi baches stay in families for generations. Somehow it feels more like home than anywhere else to me.

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3 Responses to “Coming Home”

  1. blankpete » Blog Archive » The Big Dreams… Says:

    […] The problem is, that until recently I’ve never had “the big dream”. I’ve just been working out little plans and goals, or hooking into other people’s big dreams for the major points of inspiration, then making those happen. Especially in the last few years, the spaces of my life have been confined to the size of a cubicle, and someone else taking all the risks and rewards. I’m beginning to get into some bigger things now, and was blown away by some of the pictures in Julian’s “Coming home” post. There is a concept held by the indigenous Maori people of Aotearoa / New Zealand, which is the concept of “Turangawaewae-ngakau”. It translates to “the standing-place of my heart” which holds aspects of home, friends, extended family, and community. The scenery around Julian’s family bach in Arthur’s Pass is big even at 640×480 pixels, and I can imagine how big dreams would thrive simply by being in such large-scale surroundings. What a place to go back to! What a place to stand your heart in! […]

  2. Julian Says:

    Yes, in some ways this really is my Turangawaewae-ngakau. It’s a place of replenishment, where I feel safe surrounded by the mountains and forests of my childhood, and where the sky is big, the air clear, and the water cold. Anything is possible there. At night I sometimes stand outside, and look up at the Milky Way. You can see the span of the galaxy clearly, stretching right across the sky, as there’s no pollution or city lights to dim it. It gives me a sense of place in the vast order of things. A sense of how small I am, and how connected I am to everything. It’s not even so much of dreaming big, it’s simply feeling expanded, whole, and connected. In that state anything is possible. One day I will take you there my friend, we can drink Manuka tea picked fresh, climb mountains, and stare at the stars.

  3. Blank Pete » Blog Archive » The Big Dreams… Says:

    […] beginning to get into some bigger things now, and was blown away by some of the pictures in Julian’s "Coming home" post.  There is a concept held by the indigenous Maori people of Aotearoa / New Zealand, which is […]

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