When London Became Home


We’re finally back from our trip to the Caribbean. To say I’m happy about this would be a gross understatement. General rules of hygiene are the only things stopping me from kissing the streets of London. I’ve never been so stoked to see the place.

I have so many stories to tell from the last few weeks and am itching to dive into it. The theme of the trip was generally “if anything can go wrong, it undoubtably will.” It’s not what I would have picked, had I any choice in the matter. I would much rather it to be “a smooth trip that didn’t render me destitute”, but I guess you can’t have everything in life.

However, before I begin to reflect on our experiences in Miami, Cuba and beyond, I want to talk about a feeling I’ve not really ever experienced before, in all my time as an expat.

You see, I spent a lot of this trip nursing a fervent desire to go home. Usually, when I think about where that actually is, it’s Australia that moves to the forefront of my mind. Makes sense, I suppose. Australia is where I was born and reared, after all. It’s where I was based, for 25 years of my life.

Yet I haven’t actually lived in Australia for almost two years. Doha was home, for a short stretch of time. And London is where I’ve been laying my hypothetical hat, for the last eighteen months of my life.

I’ve been so excited for the little things that make up my life in this city. Heading to my favourite yoga studio to add some Hatha to my Friday morning. Eating fried chicken and chips from our local Morley’s (an institute of South London) and watching crappy dating shows on Channel Four. Reading a book, while curled up on the couch under a pathetic little blanket I bought from Primark when I first moved here. Sleeping in my own bed, after three weeks of foam mattresses.

It took longer than I expected, but somewhere along the way, London became all that was familiar.

I’m currently sitting on my couch in fresh PJs, with that Primark blanket wrapped around my shoulders. There are remnants of our feast of fried chicken scattered around my feet. We’re all caught up on The Undateables. I’m feeling slightly more like myself, after 11 hours of sleep. It’s cold outside, but the sun is poking out through the clouds. I’ll shortly be flicking the kettle on and pouring myself a cup of tea.

What I’m feeling is happiness in its purest form. Because, I’m finally home, in every sense of the word. And I can tell you, at this moment is time there is nowhere else on this planet I’d rather be.

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