I have been more or less permanently back in the United States for about…two weeks. I say “permanently” because I am paying rent (albeit to my cousin) and looking for jobs that will help me pay my student loans. My belongings have been shipped from the United Kingdom; my dresser is set up in my new room. My address has been changed; I am looking into getting a new drivers license. I cancelled my UK phone plan…to be fair, the service was shit.
Yet somehow, the thing to rub it in the worst has been my nail polish coming off. It’s a dark navy blue — matching the dress I graduated in. The dress is at the back of my closet now. And it’s like the last remnant of an amazing week — an amazing year — is slowly disappearing as I fall back into a terrifyingly ordinary day-to-day routine.
I miss it. The awful hills you have to walk up to get back to Ustinov from basically anywhere. The silhouette of the cathedral in the background of every picture. The mound where we went up to watch a solar eclipse or take pictures after getting covered in coloured powder during Holi or huddle like drunk, freezing penguins at 1am during a party that was evacuated because someone decided it was a smart idea to smoke in the toilets.
Most of all I miss breakfast-and-Tesco with Scott on Monday mornings. Baseball with Steph; wine with Karla. Dylan and his camera, Karissa and her advice. Walking Elsie and cooking with Chris; whisky and human sunshine with Aja. Books and sports with Ruth and Libby. Rob and Corey and Pep and video games and smoking. Pizza, coffee, and Youtube videos in our kitchen with Claudio. Fangirling with Marie, dinners with Nadine and Victoria. Seeing Lara and Mike and Marc and Siobhan at the bar.
They say when you miss someone, it means you loved them enough to feel their loss. And maybe that poetic bullshit is helpful to some people. Not to me. I’m a practical girl — I don’t want to wax on about missing someone. I want to fix the damn problem by going back to them. If I wanted to love someone from afar, I would launch myself into a cheesy regency romance novel. Or go star in another remake of The Great Gatsby.
Actually, I just realised how ironic this is. I say I don’t want to go on and on about missing someone. But that’s essentially what this entire post is about. So sue me. I am allowed to be emotional about this, especially since it’s 2:30am and I am homesick for people who are scattered across the globe.
Seeing you after four months apart was like coming home. Sort of like the universe going, “Here are all the people you will ever need.” And then the universe followed that up five days later with, “Sorry, sucker. Time to leave again. Good luck with that.” My only regret of that week is that I was so sick of goodbyes by the end that I didn’t even give you — any of you — a proper hug.
I cried myself to an exhausted sleep my first night back in the United States.
I’m grateful for technology — 4,000 miles (give or take) and 5-6 hours time difference are vanished by the wonders of the internet. But it’s a poor comparison to the year we spent together. Just like chipped blue polish has nothing on the shiny smooth colour of a freshly painted nail.
I should sleep now. Until tomorrow, internet. I will probably regret this later.