Thursday, April 10, 2014

If I could visit England with you...

Sometimes I daydream about visiting England again. It's been quite a while since I've been back and I would love to travel there with a certain someone. I wonder if I'd remember my way around. Would it feel like home? Would I feel like I'd never left or like I'd been gone too long?

I would promise to hold it together and not be a blubbering mess the whole time.
I would immediately break that promise upon landing at Heathrow airpot.

As we wait to collect our bags I would tell you about landing here that first time long ago. About the tears then, how different it felt, the fog I was in.

I would insist on driving and you would keep your fingers crossed that I remembered how.
As we journey towards home I would point out all the sheep, the thatched roofs, the names of passing villages where friends used to live.

We would stay in our family's old village, at our family's favourite pub and I would lose it all over again the second we pulled into the gravel drive. We would venture downstairs for a pint, and some chips of course, and I would hope to open your eyes to the perfect dipping combination that is ketchup and English mayonnaise.

After a bite, rain or shine, I would drag you through town, hurriedly down the high street, past the familiar and the new shops, Marks and Spencers, Boots, Fishers, and I would yammer on the whole way until we reached my house.
And we would stand in front of the low stone wall with the purple flowers exploding from it and I would point out my bedroom window and seriously contemplate sneaking around back to check out the garden. You would talk me out it, no illegal activities abroad, but we would still peak over the fence. And I would console myself with the promise of a curry that evening.
We would take the longer way back into town, through the commons, the worn trails lined with a green carpet of ferns. I would tell you about that Halloween where my friends and I got into a tussle with some townies, and I would tell you about picnics with friends by the duck pond, and point out where the late bus would drop me off after school. How it would be dark at 4 o'clock in the afternoon.

We would have the best Indian food of your life, as promised, and then fall asleep that night not caring that the sent of curry lingers long after we've left this most favorite restaurant of mine. The next day we would fight our jet lag and head out to do all the touristy things since you've never seen before. But we would also visit my high school, and the other villages outside of the city where I took ballet classes, and we'd walk all over and we'd take pictures together in places where I lived and grew and changed. And I'd think how surreal it all was to visit with you. And you'd get tired of hearing the same stories I've already told you a hundred times before.
We'd probably be in sweaters and I would be in rain boots the whole time but I wouldn't mind one bit.
And when that English sun did break through, you'd see there's nothing prettier.
We'd duck in and out of pubs and warm ourselves with Cornish pasties and a pint.
I'd drag you into my favorite stores in Covent Garden.
I'd make you try all my favorite foods, dispelling the myth that England has rubbish food one tourist at a time, because it's just not true.
I would put on my best British accent and pretend to be a local.
And leaving would break my heart all over again.
But I'd be leaving with you which is always preferable to staying somewhere without you.
It's a whole other adventure in itself.
Oh, but if only I could take you across the pond with me...

2 comments :

  1. What a lovely post. You are so blessed to have had the experience of living there. I got to visit for my first time almost 3 years ago. It is my dream to live there for a year someday! I remember when my husband asked me if I wanted to join him on a trip to Europe I was not sure, I had never dreamed of that before. Now all I dream about is going back!

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  2. Must go have me a little cry now. Really. xo

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