When we first planned this trip, I wasn’t even sure we would make it back to Writtle. A part of me wasn’t sure that I even wanted to go back. Writtle is a small town just outside of Chelmsford in Essex, and its the first place I went after we left Australia and I was born, making it the longest place that has been in my life and the only real ‘hometown’ I’ve ever had. Last year we sold our home here which my family has had for longer than that time, and so I was not sure how I would feel going back to visit it.
We eventually did make our way back to Writtle for dinner one night as it was so close to my Grandma’s home and now, I am so glad we did. It was kind of odd being back there, knowing that in the future I may never go back there again. There was some part of being there which filled my heart in a way that I didn’t expect it to. Driving around all the streets I could point out things I did when I was younger, places that I went to, gardens we visited and it was so treasured and restorative to see it all one last time.
When I was a little girl, my grandparents and I used to come down to feed the ducks at the pond on the village green after I’d spent the afternoon helping grandad tend to his allotment. We would bring the leftover crusts off of our loaves of bread and spend an hour or two catching up with the little ducklings. I remembered that I loved this little town more than anything, not because it’s somewhere that’s particularly grand or exciting, but because it’s the one place that has been a part of my life since the very beginning and for a girl who grew up moving country and/or city so frequently as I did, that means an awful lot.
I have always had a love for red front doors and always dreamed of painting my own one day when I ‘grow up’. I never really understood why until we came back to our sweet little town and I found nearly every second home with a red front door. It’s amazing the little things that subconsciously seep into our souls and form dreams, even without us even knowing… It was quite exceptional to realise this and I pointed out every red door I saw (which was a lot!).