Letter from Felixstowe: Home, Family and Dreams of Travel

Home by the sea, Felixstowe

Home by the sea, Felixstowe

Home is where the heart is, or as Clive sometimes says, home is where you make it. The challenge, of course, is that home can be in multiple places and sometimes our hearts are pulled in multiple directions.

I’ve just returned to Felixstowe after a sobering two weeks in the USA. My stepson and dear friends continue to inspire everyone who knows them with their courage and bravery as they face life-altering medical conditions.

Clive’s father’s funeral took place the day after I arrived home. Clive and his father were never close — Clive says ‘we never had a father-son relationship’ – but my hubby has done a wonderful job taking care of his father’s needs, especially during the past four years. In recent weeks, while coping with the aftermath of hand surgery and a lingering arm wound, Clive handled all funeral arrangements, planned the service and delivered a eulogy that received many compliments from people who knew his father.

We’ve felt very disjointed lately and I’ve been moving around so much my mind can’t seem to stop jumping around and worrying about people I love. I was away for 13 nights in the U.S. — split up as 1 (London airport), 5 (DC), 2(NJ), 2 (CT), 2 (NJ), and 1 (in flight). This kind of schedule was routine in my career days but now I ruefully admit I just can’t keep it up. I love arriving home and settling back into our daily routines and life by the sea in England.

And yet … we only have a few days until it’s once again time to pack our wheelie bags. This weekend, we’ll meet Clive’s daughter in London as she arrives from Australia and we board a train together for Scotland. These are plans made long before other events happened this past summer with loved ones in the US and UK.

I’m hoping the Highlands scenery will be a balm for all of us, including Clive’s daughter who has an intense working life in Australia, and that we’ll be able to rest our eyes and hearts and minds on Scotland’s great natural beauty. I’m looking forward to taking a back seat — figuratively and literally – and happily going along with whatever Clive and his travel-savvy daughter cook up for our daily explorations.

So I think we can be both homebodies and travellers. We can cherish our family time and the particular place on the planet we call home and we can still dream of travel and following our bliss to special places in the world.

And I remind myself that sometimes we need to take the lead but other times it’s okay to let go and take the back seat.

Felixstowe beach huts & North Sea

Felixstowe beach huts & North Sea

Cheers and thanks for reading. Next week’s letter will be from Scotland.

4 Responses

  1. Enjoy Scotland and just leave it to Clive and daughter.

  2. Thanks Rosemary! You’re a sweetheart 🙂 I will gratefully do as you say.

    Cheers across the Channel to the lovely Loire Valley.

  3. I just know you all will have a restful,and joyous time in Scotland. Will you soon need a special stamp in your passport?!! Only kidding of course!


  4. Martha B, hello and that’s a very relevant question!

    The issue of Scottish independence (& upcoming referendum) is high on everyone’s mind here. We will be back in Felixstowe next week when the vote happens 🙂

    Cheers from a beautiful country.

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