After a trip to England to visit where I was born, where I grew up and lived as an adult before migrating, to Australia, it was awe inspiring to feel the pull of country and how important my roots are. Having been dragged (probably screaming) through the Industrial Revolution and the centuries of ‘city’ life that followed and so away from living and working with the land, my ancestors must still have retained some connection with the earth of their birth and passed it on down to me. I felt it so strongly that I sometimes cried as I walked over fields (paddocks) once skipped over as a child, or pressed my hands against ancient walls, some hundreds of years old, or stepped down stairways the Romans chipped into their baths or houses. Who knows what Roman or Norman or German or VIking or Anglo Saxon or Celtic blood runs through my veins. Do percentages matter? Maybe this pull of roots strengthens as one grows older, as mortality hits the mind and the heart. While I have always vaguely comprehended the pull of country for aboriginal peoples around the world this trip has heightened the sense that it is within us all…if only we will listen to that need we all have for the parts of our ‘uncivilised’ past., of our connection to the earth beneath our feet and the sky above our heads. Will I write about this? Can I write about this? How to incorporate this sense of past, of generations before me, of some strange affecting hold over our, dare I say, spirit? Who knows. It is early days since I came back but I have on this trip had that sense of belonging to the people who came before me and to the earth that nurtured me. Enjoying living in different country does not lessen the ties, it only makes for a better understanding of other peoples and why they do their best to keep their connections through language, culture, dance and music. May the differences and the similarities continue.