The school year is coming to an end, and my busy days have turned into frenzied days! It’s all good, I need the buzz but I am looking forward to a week away from it all (we’re leaving for Mexico on Saturday). Unfortunately, having days filled to the brim means I hardly get time to sit down, unless it’s for work, which means no time to blog, which is really not good, especially as so much is going on and waiting to be reported on! Add to that the fact that I’ve always been an excellent procrastinator, and you see why there’s been radio silence for a while.
I can hardly believe that The Summer is upon us once more. And as usual, we’re going to cross the pond to spend some weeks back in the Old World, with friends and family. We’re all really excited about it, although I feel slightly nervous too. Planning for those six weeks away from home has a different feel this time round. Yes, we’re leaving home for 6 weeks, not going home for 6 weeks. It’s no longer a trip “home”. This time, it’s definitely a visit, a much looked forward to visit, and we’re hoping to see a lot of friends and family. But it’ll be quite a different experience for us this year. While I feel very relaxed about our time in Germany – after all, those few weeks in the summer are what we’ve been doing for the last 8 years or so, and I know what to expect – but the England part will be very different. It’s hitting me now that we have been away for quite some time, and things have moved on, both there and here. F wasn’t even 4 when we left the UK, and I realise how much of her roots she has no memory of. Looking through some photos the other day, she didn’t recognise people, or our old house and her old room. When E and I expressed our incredulity, she got really upset because she couldn’t remember. It’s natural, of course, at that age, but it really showed me that California is our home now. And back in the UK, friends and acquaintances (I’m not talking about family here) will be happy to see us, but I suppose if we didn’t make the journey, they wouldn’t notice. Writing this sounds a little odd, as if I was bitter, but that’s not actually what I feel. I’m just much more realistic about life, and two years is a long time. I truly look forward to catching up (hey, there might even be a few parties on the horizon!), but I no longer expect everybody to make time for us. Life is busy, and don’t I know it.
And after our time in Europe, we’ll return home and resume our Californian life, which has gradually become a more permanent idea, and not just “for a couple of years”. Because we don’t need to right now, we still haven’t made a decision regarding the future, except that we really don’t want to leave now! I’m more or less successfully banishing any serious contemplation on what’s going to happen over the next couple of years and am quite blissfully enjoying life in this gorgeous part of the world. It has become our home, and a good one at that. How on earth we’d ever cope with a move back to Europe is something I dread too much to think about. I thought about this the other day, when I was out running, and every single person I encountered along the way, old and young, called a cheerful “hello” or waved or smiled at me. Are people like that back in the UK, or in Germany? It struck me last year how different people act in different countries, and I wonder what differences I will notice this time round. I guess I no longer clearly belong in any country, and have to relearn mannerisms and behaviour. Oh boy…
This photo was taken in Yosemite, where we went in April with my in-laws. It was the second time we’d been there, and certainly not the last. It’s got to be one of the most beautiful places on earth, beyond stunning. We had an amazing time….