To me home is the New Forest, Hampshire. I grew up in a little village called Woodgreen – not to be confused by the Woodgreen in London. It is in the middle of nowhere and you know everyone that lives there, it’s that kind of place. As a kid I loved knowing everyone but as I grew older the place grew smaller and I needed to get myself out of such a small place.
In the last year I have spent just over a month at ‘Home’, and as this time gets longer I find myself missing silly things. More so because I am a country girl and right now I’m stuck in the city so I find myself realising how much I love where I grew up and why.
- The Quiet! – In the city there is never silence, you can always hear a car or a siren or people or the train. But in the country you get complete silence for long periods of time, you can go for hours without seeing another car and the train has not run past the village since 50 years ago! Until you are faced with constant noise you don’t realise how nice living in a quiet place is.
- The Open Space – the New Forest is what the name says, a forest. Everywhere you look is green – fields, trees, forests… It’s everywhere, there is tons of walking to be done and in the summer/spring/autumn it is beautiful come to think of it winter is nice too. I love being able to wander through the forest or kick a ball about in the field next door. You feel free because there is so much open space – we don’t do ‘National Parks’ in England like they do in the USA but I would certain say the New Forest is a ‘National Park’.
- Being able to Horse Ride – I love riding and got on my first horse when I was 4 – I lived near to Whistbury Horse Farm for years in the 90’s. At home I can just get on the horse and ride, I know where I am and where to go. I have access to a horse and I don’t have to spend a fortune on getting there and riding at a school. Since leaving except for my summer at camp I have only ridden twice when I have visited home.
- Being close to the beach – Home is 30 minutes’ drive from the beach (Bournemouth), I love the beach and love nothing more than to spend time there – either to enjoy the sun or have a walk and clear my head. Currently I am in London a city with no beach and the nearest one is a day trip away. It’s funny how when you don’t have something close by you realise how much you appreciated it.
- My friends – I have friends who I have grown up with my whole life that still live at ‘Home’, these are people I always miss when I’m away. The sort of friends that next time you see them even if it has been months, nothing has changed. I am lucky to have friends who support my travelling and who still ‘get me’ despite my constant changing
- My Family – Of course I miss my family, there isn’t a person who I know who doesn’t miss their family when they are away. But just like my friends they support me and due to the internet wonders of twitter/facebook and skype they always know where I am and what I’m up to.
- The Night Sky – in the city the sky is always orange with street lights, you can never really see the stars and appreciate the Northern Hemisphere. From Woodgreen – my little middle of nowhere home you can see so many stars, it’s easy to spot many of the constellations and let the light from the sky guide your walk home at night.
(This feature is taking a break for 2 weeks now to make way for ‘Travel Memories From A Year Ago’ all old post by the boy)