Posted by: marykfurness | June 18, 2013

Rhapsodies and Ruminations

ImageIt’s our last day of real vacation enjoyment on this trip…we will momentarily sally forth upon our last day exploring Edinburgh. Tomorrow we take an hours-long train trip back to London, change to the Underground, and seek out our hotel near the airport. An overnight stay, a last meal with a dear friend, then an “oh-****-early” venture to the airport, security, and the beginning of our re-entry back into Reality.

Reality is gonna….well…suck.

Sort of.

Gone will be the days of standing on the ramparts of castles, towers and walls–hundreds and thousands of years old, and wondering what it must have been like back then. Gone will be idyllic afternoons wandering among standing stones, or trying to stand on a pebbly beach–laughing uproariously!–with a newly-found friend. Gone will be the challenges–well met, thank you!–of deciphering train, bus, and Underground schedules, and arriving at the proper place at the proper time.

Gone, most sadly, will be these three weeks of time with my family.  My husband managed to carve this huge amount of time out of his work schedule, and has delighted in the castles and museums of Britain; I have watched our son evolve and grow, almost in spite of himself; and I have revelled in meeting a friend I knew only through email and Facebook, seeing a cousin I haven’t seen in a quarter-century, and sinking into the beauty that is the UK.

We return to heat, humidity, and rains in Missouri…but also to our home, and our cats. We return to friends who have watched over our home, and to our church, which will enfold us in love and music.  I return with new energy and ideas for work; our son still has summer activities; and John has a spring in his step and a light in his eyes.

What will I miss? Really good beer. Incredibly courteous people (for the most part!). Great, affordable local produce in the grocery stores. An awesome pub in the tiny town of Haltwhistle, Northumberland. A lengthy conversation in said pub with a guy who used to be the UK Sales Director for Anheuser-Busch. The cool temperatures in mid-June. The way it stays light until 10:30 at night. The fact that there is an iris blooming in a large pot in our courtyard in Edinburgh…in mid-June. The apology for the train running SIX MINUTES LATE between London and Carlisle. Spending time with my foodie friend wandering London’s Borough Market and wanting to buy or eat everything in sight!! Finding real iced tea in London–Earl Grey, with mint and a slice of lemon (at the Borough Market). Spending my birthday in London, and Father’s Day in Edinburgh. So, so, so much more.

But I will come back. I don’t know when, but I will come back. I will rent a wee flat, like we have done on this trip, and I will shop locally and cook lovely meals and live like a local, if only for a short while. I will meander, and read, and write, and drink a good ale and eat in a pub down the street, and enjoy the music that streams out of the pubs and up the hill and into my window of a night.  Because that is how it should be.

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