It’s going to be tough to leave…

I’m almost half way through my trip back to Europe. I’ve been to Spain, to Worcester, to Southampton, back to my hometown: Newcastle and to Lincoln (where most of my UK family live).

I’m currently writing from Farnborough where my father works during the week, I can hear him breathing as he sleeps and it’s comforting yet painful as I know this wonderful trip will come to an end eventually. We haven’t shared a room for a very long time, it’s quite cool really. Although these single beds are so thin! See who falls out first throughout the night.

All I keep thinking as I say goodbye to my reunited friends and family… “it’s going to be tough to leave”.

I see my cousin as I drive north and south or come back and forth into England, the same with my father – but everyone else it’s a one time visit. It’s great! It feels like no time has passed since we last met apart from the fact that we’ve all gotten a little older and health issues tend to take up more conversation time than before 🧐 one is expecting a child any minute now, another her wedding, and even my cousin is now a married woman herself.. and I couldn’t be happier for them all.

Worcester trip 🙂

I was just trying to organise another trip to see a school friend in London, only to realize we will probably have just over 24 hours together before I travel to Luton airport to fly to Madrid and see another friend for a weekend. I felt the similar pang of sadness knowing it would only be a short reunion… then again, I should be lucky that I have these wonderful and incredibly important people in my life to visit. And everyone has been so great – taking time off work to spend the day with me, picking me up at airports or train stations, even not allowing me to pay for dinners. I feel lucky to have these people in my life, and even though I feel sad that perhaps, because I travel, they are not in my life as often or consistently as I’d like but at the same time, I’m trying to remind myself that BECAUSE of travel – I’ve met these people and because of travel – I still have reunions with these people.

It’s just tough to leave.

Tomorrow I plan to drive via ferry to Troyes my French hometown. I’ll be spending time with an uncle and cousins over there as well as a Japanese friend who herself moved to Paris a few years ago from Tokyo. More on this later…

It is a slightly sentimental trip as it was one my mother and I often took, twice a year, to visit her family throughout my childhood. I’m curious to see how I cope doing it alone… adult and all.

Southampton trip 💕

In my 20s when I lived in Spain and Taiwan, I was less worried about relationships back home as I was still in adventure mode and making new lifelong friends as I went – perhaps now, I’m feeling a little more settled and wondering that if I decide to continuously live outside of Europe, will our reunions forever be brief? I hope not. This time was my first attempt at a reunion tour, perhaps next time I will be better organised, stay for longer or be pickier with my time? Again, I can only wait and see.

Oddly enough there is a snow storm throughout the UK, with warnings not to travel unless necessary. Honey, it’s necessary and time is precious these next few weeks so travel on I shall..

Even though it’s been exhausting, with lack of sleep, catching a flu/cold on my first day and still fighting it with drugs and alcohol trying to push away the symptoms, driving most places hours between each other whilst trying to be my best active self with everyone, it’s been a lot of fun. Even just being ‘on the road’ the whole time has been fun, I’ve been quite settled this past year in Canada so it’s about time I loosen my travelling mustang and let it be free! “Looks like you’ve been living in your car!” Has come up a few times, well, yes, in a way. Just with a nice cozy bed waiting for me wherever I show up 🙂

Part of me is happy to return to my little Canadian adventure and to see how it all develops but part of me is really dreading that moment in Gatwick airport, once I’ve walked through security and I know I won’t return for a wee while…

But I must focus on the present – look forward to my French week and seeing my French family again. Allô allô!

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