Here is a little something you need to know about my aunty. She is a fantastic person, she has read every book in the library, learnt French without ever taking any lessons, she knows everything about everything, but she doesn’t leave the house. Her biggest fear in life is getting lost and this causes her massive panic attacks. She cared for my uncle for ten years as he was bed bound. In those ten years she only ever left the house in small periods of 30-45 minutes where she would visit my grandparents and go to the bank, the only two things she could not do over the internet. This began by her fearing that he would fall or need something while she wasn’t there, and after a while she began to notice the world changing out there and how she was not a part of it, so year by year she left the house even less.
With my uncle sadly passing away, my aunty became overwhelmed with so much free time in her life. It wasn’t until I went to visit that anyone had invited her to do something a little extraordinary, like going to the movies.
The funny thing here is that we probably had more fun trying to get there than we actually did watching the movie. Only knowing how to drive from her house to my nan’s house and back, and me having spent the last few years growing up in Australia, made getting there a little more complicated. Just putting it out there, the town where I am from in Brazil is as big as the Wollongong campus and that’s it.
We decided it would be best to print out a map directing us straight there, due to google maps unfortunately not working in either of our smart phones.
The journey that was meant to take exactly seven minutes, ended up taking twenty five. She didn’t care, neither did I. Of course we missed the first turn of the map because being as sophisticated as I am, I waited for the paper in my hands to tell me to turn right in five hundred meters and, of course it didn’t. From then on we kept guessing the way by judging places and houses that looked familiar, but the entire town looked familiar…we saw it every day!
It was probably the funniest day we had both had in a long time. By the time we got to the movies we had missed our session, we bought the later one instead, some popcorn and sat out the front eating it as if it were the old times. My aunty began to tell me about the first time she had ever been to the movies and how magnificent it all was, and now forty-five years later she was having the same feeling, butterflies in her stomach and just as excited as she was when she was ten.
Hagestrand might have put it in technical terms, but I will put it in my own, the geographical journey is just as important, if not more than the destination itself.