On January 31, 1995, I despatched a postcard to my father from Sydney, Australia. Equipment and I have been close to the tip of a month-long convention cruise that had taken us throughout the Pacific by boat to Hawaii, Fiji, Samoa, New Zealand, to the east coast of Australia to Darwin, the place we left the ship that had Been our dwelling for weeks. After a go to to the Northern Territories, we return to Sydney to start our return dwelling. We depart Missouri in winter and end in the midst of the Australian summer time season.
Over the course of that month, we traveled to the opposite facet of the world, touring from west to east by means of one time zone to a different, together with the worldwide date line, the place not solely the time, but in addition the day modified. Whereas touring by means of the huge expanse of the Pacific Ocean, the times melted from one to a different. The rhythm of life slowed down because the magic of the motion of the ocean led us to a state of peace. Progressively, the blues of the sky and the ocean blended into one, and time appeared to not matter a lot.
Whereas I used to be in Sydney, our first cease in Australia, I discovered an previous postcard from 1938 that confirmed a traveler on high of a camel within the Australian desert who was driving on a high-speed prepare to Perth. The caption learn: "Journey comfortably on the Australian railway, save days, by means of Australia." I wrote a message on the postcard and despatched it to my father who taken care of our home, Breakfast Creek, whereas we have been away.
“Pricey dad,” I wrote, “It was fantastic speaking to you this morning. Clear as a bell of this finish of the world. I’m wearing white summer time and have spent a few wonderful days strolling the windy streets of this nice metropolis of Sydney. The Olympic Video games will likely be splendid on this place. Australia is worked up in regards to the occasion and the banners are already hanging from the road lamps that commemorate Sydney's cultural occasions. I hope you get pleasure from this nice previous journey postcard. Think about! Crossing the Australian desert on a camel! See you in 10 days or so. Love cat
4 different postcards have been despatched as we headed north by boat to Cairns, Darwin and the aboriginal lands referred to as the New Territories, and that’s the place this story takes a mysterious flip. One was addressed to my father c / o Salter at our handle at Breakfast Creek in Hartsburg; The others have been mailed to my mother and father at their handle in San Antonio, Texas. However as if it have been delivered in a mail bag transported on a camel by means of the Australian desert, they disappeared for the following 24 years. By then my two mother and father had crossed into the following world the place time and house know no bounds.
Then, a month in the past, the 5 postcards despatched by mail in 1995 have been lastly delivered, 4 to my mother and father' handle in San Antonio, the place my sister Kim now lives, and one to our mailbox in Boomerang Creek, even though They’d headed to our previous Breakfast Creek. handle the place we’ve got not lived since 2005. Curiously, the postcard doesn’t have a postal cancellation mark that signifies a date or location from which it was mailed.
So as to add to the strangeness of this snail mail story, I got here throughout a neighbor, Shari Bullard, who took out her cellphone and confirmed me an image of an previous purple mailbox with our title and handle of Breakfast Creek painted on the facet. "It's on sale on the J Avenue Classic consignment store in Jefferson Metropolis," he advised me. "I noticed it yesterday." In fact, Equipment and I instantly went to the shop and realized this story from its proprietor, Lizzy Harlan. One in all his sellers mentioned he had been present in a muddy ditch earlier than being bought at public sale in our previous home.
Our previous Breakfast Creek mailbox now rests on a walnut stump close to our porch at Boomerang Creek. And if I ever opened its rusty steel door and located one other postcard despatched from Australia in 1995, it wouldn't shock me a bit.
Cathy Salter is a geographer and columnist who lives together with her husband, Equipment, in southern Boone County, in a spot they name Boomerang Creek.