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.
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.
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.
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...