Skype. Facebook. Text messages. Messenger. Phone calls.

Technology is great for closing the gap that physical distance creates with close family and friends living overseas, but no matter how great the technology, the image quality, the clarity of audio, nothing can close the gap during times of tragedy.

Recently, a close family member living in Turkey was involved in a motorcycle accident and passed away. He was young, just married, full of life, love, ambitions, family plans – but all that was cut short in a single moment. After the disbelief and shock, and between the sorrow and tears, there comes a deep longing to be with the people who are suffering the most, who you know need you there beside them. Suddenly, nothing is more important than to be there to share the sorrow and no amount of calls or messages can replace the need to embrace, to cry into each other’s shoulders and whisper consoling words. Nothing can close the distance, in fact, the distance seems all that much greater.

There are so many wonderful advantages to living in Australia, but right now, wading through this difficult time has made me feel like I may as well be living on the moon.

To all my family in Turkey, I may be living down under, but in spirit I am right there beside you.

Tip o’ The Fez to you.