Our God is an awesome God. I asked for very little for my trip - just a chance to meet old friends, make new friends, celebrate with family, visit Hunter Valley, watch U2, and rest. I know, that sounds grand already, doesn't it?
I got so much more.
My niece is the loveliest niece on earth. I know all doting aunts say that, so sue me. But she is! I miss waking up to her smile and watching her dance in her playpen and carrying all 10 kilos of her. I am grateful that she is a healthy, happy baby.
I got to see the doctor of my dreams. Please see previous post for more on that. I'm on the road to health myself and, consequently, happiness.
I went on several dates. I'm not talking about sticky date pudding, which was hands down the best dessert I had during that trip, but I got to meet real men of different nationalities, all university graduates, and a few of them I did find interesting.
I went to beautiful beaches. I visited several churches, some for the first time. I slept over old friends' houses. I met a wonderful family who shared their story with me.
I attended many parties, the most fabulous of which was hosted by my sister and my brother-in-law. I stayed in a hotel with the most amazing view of the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge.
I was able to spend a mighty long time with my family, whom I've missed the past year due to our distance from one another. That was really awesome. Although we weren't complete, technology brought us closer to the rest.
I got to be there when Sydney was at the height of Oprah Fever. I made several trips to the grocery store, which all my friends know is my favorite chore. Next to doing the laundry of course, which I got to perform. Several times!!! Then I was able to conquer my sister's kitchen with a few dishes that were instant hits. I even attended my high school reunion online, at a batchmate's house, via live feed.
The ending was fitting - I watched the amazing fireworks display on New Year's Eve along with 1.5 million people who gathered at the Sydney Harbour. I learned that there were more people in Sydney Harbour that night than in New York City's Times Square. As the sky lit up in vibrant colors shooting from barges, buildings, and that famous bridge, I could not help but thank God for the grand ending to my holiday.
All in all, my vacation was not bad. Not bad at all. In fact, it was awesome!!! I am grateful to God, my family, and my friends for making this possible. I am trying to snap out of the vacation mode. The Church has started Ordinary Time after the Baptism of the Lord. Having spent Advent and Christmas in a special way, I am aware of the change in season.
Just like I prayed, I have been changed by this trip. I will write more about it in the future. I have created a slideshow of my favorite shots and will include a link here sometime.
Meanwhile, I am crawling back to reality as a changed woman. As to how, I will find the inspiration to write about it sometime soon.