You will never escape it once it has you in its clutches. It’s nice. It’s normal. It’s suburban, unpretentious and welcoming. It’s sweet and sticky like treacle, and about as hard to get out of.

It’s Balwyn. It’s Balwyn, and it wants you to be happy. It wants to make you happy, even if making you happy makes you crazy. That’s Balwyn.

You will not escape it cleanly – you’ll leave something behind, some lead to be pursued, some thread to be pulled. Some way of tracking you down. It’s inevitable, and the sooner you accept that, the happier you’ll be about it. Not that you’ll ever be entirely happy, in your brick veneer prison on Mortgage Hill, but you’ll smile and pretend for the neighbours, and isn’t that what really matters?

You can leave any time you like, but you can never check out. It is always following you. Pleading. Calling your name.

Balwyn, calling.

Suburbs near Balwyn:

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