I’m tired. Really tired.
I went back to work a few days ago (I work a few hours a week as a distributor for a marketing company). It’s funny being in Hobart again after so long in cities wider and grander and a million times bigger and a million times more foreign.
The familiarity of these places threw me. I think it’s because I’m tired. Really tired. But also because I’m different and they, for the most part, are not.
It’s a funny place to be in, and I’m very aware that window of observation will be open to me for a very short time. Soon enough I’ll walk these streets and not notice them at all, not think about anything except a thousand memories of walking these same streets a thousand times before. But right now, while I’m tired and while that window of observation is open, I thought I’d show you my city, the places I’ll walk a thousand more times without noticing. It’s a good city, really.
This is the mall. It rained today, all day, which is unusual for Hobart. Two days ago I got sunburnt. That contrast in weather is pretty normal.
I got a coffee in town, which is pretty normal, and thought about how many old buildings there are. Hobart is over 200 years old, which is an infant by European standards, but compared to Calgary, a mere babe at 100 years, it’s an ancient city. We have some beautiful architecture that for the most part I take for granted. I didn’t even get to the older, genteel parts of the city.
And then there’s the modernist 1950s influence. We have a lot of that, too. Those blue windows you can see poking out the back are the library, by the way.
And this is it. This is looking down from the street I park my car on, down onto the main road, and beyond that is the highway. There are other, prettier views of Hobart. I wasn’t coming to capture it’s beauty today as much as it’s familiarity. This is My Hobart. Two lanes of traffic. Peak hour that lasts five minutes. The mountain that comes and goes with the weather. These are the scenes that I know like the back of my hand.
To tell you the truth it’s good to be home, but at the same time familiarity makes me a little sad too. It makes me, strangely, nostalgic for places that are different.
I’m tired, really tired. And it’s good to be home. But to tell you the truth, today I’m homesick for America.
Cities wider and grander than Hobart?
🙂 Well, wider doesn’t take much…our central business district (our “downtown”) goes for about four blocks. No joke.
I love it. It looks like home. Only my hometown has a population of 563 and no coffee shop. And the library was once a (small) house. I’m glad I’m not the only one missing America today.
It’s a hard place to leave, isn’t it? I’m glad it reminds you of home. Hobart has a population of about 200,000, but it never loses it’s small-town feel. I like that and don’t like it at the same time.
When I was a little kid, in a much littler town, the original library was in a small house too. I loved that place!
It’s funny. I’ve lived all but 8 years of my life and yet from your perspective I had to look really hard to recognise them. It made me feel kind of what I guess you’re feeling right now, familiar yet strange. Great photos! And I’m figuring when I finally get my trip (don’t ask) I’ll feel the same way about home when I get back.
Wow, that’s really interesting Jennifer. I kind of know what you mean, in that I almost had to look twice to remember where each photo was taken, yet I just snapped them on my phone as I walked the same routes I always walk. Sometimes the simple act of framing, even when one doesn’t intentionally frame, can make a big difference to how we see things.
(and no, I was wondering, but I won’t ask 😦 )
Whatever you did, it was amazing.
When I get back to “home” after a long time away it feels like I am looking at it with the eyes of a tourist. Funny that people think of America as big cities. In reality it is more a country of small cities – like Holbart. When we travel in the US and Canada these are the cities we look for and explore. Mainly because my husband refuses to go into the big cities. 🙂 I’ll look forward to some photos of those big cities we don’t visit any more.
The thing about America though is there are SO MANY cities, big AND small! In terms of big metropolises Australia has Sydney and Melbourne, and a few other, smaller capitals. The US has LA and NY, but then you’ve got SF and San Jose and San Diego (and that’s just in California!!), and Nashville and Dallas and Chicago and Indianapolis, and…and…and they’ve all got multiple multi-lane freeways going in and out, and millions upon millions of people, and THEN you’ve got the little cities on top of that! THE PLACE IS HUGE!!
22 million people. That’s all we’ve got in our entire country!
How cool!! Hobart reminds me of here, Fredericton. They’re about the same age. Same quaintness. Although we have 2 universities, which amps up the population from Septemebr through May.
Hey, that’s nice! Although I can’t imagine two universities. What’s the population there?
Once in a while I am struck with similar thoughts. To me it’s quite foreign I’ve moved close to 15 times and this is the longest I’ve lived anywhere. It’s so strange sometimes it makes me want to cry…In a good way…I think.
Wow, that’s a lot of moves. Experiences like that shape people in ways I don’t understand.
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