Deja vous & dominos

Posted on September 21, 2012

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On Wednesday morning, I went for a run in Sydney’s CBD to stretch out the legs post the Sabah Ultra last weekend. On passing the Opera House, I was overcome by an intense deja vous followed by an immense realisation of how small our world really is and how interconnected we all are.

You see, the last time I was at the Opera House was at sunset on a balmy evening with Aiden (hubbie #1) and our friend Becky.  2006 I think. Becky, we initially met on a boat in Cambodia travelling from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh. Months later, as Aiden went on a boys adventure along the Great Ocean Road, Becky and I hung out in Melbourne. We stayed in a cheap as chips hostel and ate rubbish food so we could spend all our money on G&T’s at the casino. At that same hostel, I met a lovely guy called Dave who was cycling across Australia and turned out to be from a neighbouring village in Scotland.  Turns out our mums are friends too.

As for Aiden, I first met him through my dear girlfriend Tosh. Tosh and I were at boarding school together in Edinburgh and she had spent some months as a 20-year old living in a hovel called the Pink House in Kings Cross with, amongst others, Aiden. As it so happens, Tosh, some time later, spent a good few years living back in Sydney but this second stint as a Mosman mummy with her hubbie and daughter.

On the aforementioned evening, it was the day of the Melbourne Cup.  Becky and I had sent Aiden off to place our bets on a day that turned into a momentous bender.  He returned having got all our bets wrong but my threats to divorce him fast disappeared when the money came rolling in. We ended up at the Opera House bar sipping champagne and having one of those evenings you never want to end.

Becky now lives back in London and Aiden in Dubai.  Aiden’s old best friend and long time London flat mate, Pierre is incidentally based here in Sydney now.

This weekend I shall be popping into the Shangri-La … a chain of hotels owned by the Kuok family who happened to have been our neighbours in HK when I was growing up.  Hui Kuok was my friend and I remember spending countless afternoons together playing in the pool or singing our hearts out on her karaoke machine.

Speaking of HK, my fab friend Rachel aka Hong Kong Adventure Baby will arrive here next week and we’ll be heading up to the Blue Mountains for a couple of big runs in advance of being in a team together for Oxfam Trailwalker 100km in Hong Kong in November. When over there, I’ll be staying with my dad and his wife Alex who also once lived in Sydney with her hubbie#1.

Oh and this morning I had a short but sweet run across Anzac Bridge and around Wattle Bay with my friend Dana … another Sydney-ite who I met first in Nepal when we were stuck in a Maoist Road Block on route to Annapurna to run the iconic Annapurna ultra on the 1st January 2012.

My point today is this. Sometimes it takes just one thought, reminder, memory or meeting to start an entire domino effect of connections. These connections reinforce how small this playground of ours really is and give us an incredible sense of belonging, a comforting feeling of familiarity.

So whilst I once thought Sydney on the edge of our very big world, I’m starting to change my perspective. As we spend more and more time travelling in all four corners, we realise that we have planted roots in lots of places and those roots, if we let them, will flower. Perhaps all the opportunities that life throws at us are potential flowers … they just need care / consideration, water / will and sunshine / sway …

So today, let’s raise a thought for déjà vous and dominos. Who knows where they might lead us!

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