I feel like I have slept and slept,three long nights and an afternoon or two resulting in perhaps something like normalcy. The beaming sister was waiting for me at the airport and we battled the traffic on London’s ring road for a while and then swooshed down the motorway to Winchester, no pot holes, no beeping, nothing coming at us on the wrong side, just went very fast, arriving in no time at all. She, the sister, had bought me a bottle of water for the ride, that seemed very familiar. Huge hugs when we walked in the door, not only affectionate, but I feel given with relief, I had made it intact and whole. Cheeses then and big Carr’s Water biscuits, opened cards and gifts from near and far, how much effort had gone into making sure they were there and waiting for me. A wine or two and slept soundly all night.
The first day in the UK was something like the first day in any of the other countries I visited, top of the list was to get the technology working, so into town to the cell phone shop. At least the gentlemen behind the counter knew what I wanted, no hand gestures required, no waiting around for someone who spoke a spattering of English and of course, unlike India, no passport photo needed or forms to submit in triplicate. That said, it did take a while, but now I am the proud owner of yet another SIM card and my phone works, I have a UK phone number and I feel less reliant on family members. I slipped away and took photos of famous landmarks, bought a newspaper, it all felt oddly familiar.
Day two, after the adrenaline had worn off, was a little harder. I found myself wandering off in my mind, back a week or more, to Udaipur, where I was exactly a week ago, on my way to Pushkar, which I didn’t miss at all, though the memory of getting totally lost in the dark on my way back to the hotel made me smile. Cleaning my teeth using tap water, what a treat, washing my hands every time I passed a sink out of habit, checking my pockets to make sure I hadn’t lost anything, going to the pub for lunch and listening, watching, wondering, do these good people have any idea what life is like at the two hundred kilometer marker outside Jaisalmer. Internalized it all though, don’t want to appear to be unhinged, do I . Everything is so much easier, see it, eat it, drink it, read it, there is no need to worry, it’s safe. Worry that I am being unsociable after so long on my own, I don’t say much. Try and look at some photos, but there are so many, and really, as always only about one in twenty five is worth lingering on, and anyway there isn’t time to tell the story. I need a computer for some serious editing.
Requests have come in for me to share these thoughts, so here we go. Nat in Seattle suggested I go somewhere I have never been before to help the transition back, I just might do that. Picking up the niece from the train station and then tea with Great Aunt today, like I said, it’s all so easy.
That tall building is the home of the one family and all those staff that I mentioned earlier.
Oh Tim how good you seem. I have enjoyed reading about adventures during these rainy days in Sonoma. You are a sensational writer and I delight in your musings. Sounds like the perfect homecoming to England and the perfect Birthday celebration! Happy Landings,
Great a GB blog AND photos! Sounds like you had a lovely birthday and a great welcome. I guess it’ll take you a while to ‘wake up’ to your new surroundings, but you will. Somewhere different? Louth? Maybe? Keep safe.
Nice to have a UK blog, lovely day today. We went to the coast near Brighton today the sea was calm. hope you enjoyed the 1st April and the sunshine.Where to next?
Erin and I are both green with envy that you are in England in April. We are remembering our whirl wind trip there last April to see the wedding! God, it’s beautiful there in the spring. Unlike Seattle where it is tipping buckets!!!! xoxo