I have been home from Italy for a little over a week now and whilst Italy was gorgeous, I am loving this being at home feeling that I’ve had over the past week. Of course, holidays are fun and give you space from everything going on in home lives but coming home, to familiar surroundings and to your own bed far exceeds the anticipation I had when I landed at Verona Airport.
When my sister and brother-in-law came to escort me home, when I landed back here in the UK, I was excited to see them; to see a McDonald’s that looked like it belonged and just plain excited to be home. We stopped off at Oxford services on the way; I stuffed myself with a chicken royale meal and onion rings from Burger King, feeling typically English and thinking of previous times I had frequented that establishment, in particular with corduroy 08, swcritic and other college class mates on psychology field trips to London (good times).
Being away from home makes you realise what is so good about it. Ok, what with the riots, lack of job vacancies, etc, England may not be the most desirable place right now but it will always be my home (well Birmingham will always be my home if we’re going to be specific). It is where I grew up, where the majority of family and friends reside, where I have loved and lost. In some places it may be a pit but there are plenty of beautiful areas to counteract and that’s true of any place in the world.
I don’t want to live in Birmingham for the rest of my life, I want to broaden my horizons and try new places but it will always be in my heart and I imagine I will be a regular visitor, where I can get that homecoming feeling again and again.
On the journey back from the airport, my sister said to me, “you know you’re home when you see the big sainsbury’s sign”. Sainsbury’s being at the end of the A435 dual carriageway off the M42 and only minutes from my house. You drive down the A435 surrounded by trees and as the road curves the illuminated sign appears, floating above the trees, almost like a beacon, a lighthouse letting you know you’re nearly there.
Throughout this past week, I’ve felt that homecoming feeling numerous times. When I caught up on world news, slept in my own bed, stuffed a weeks worth of washing into the laundry basket, unpacked gifts I’d bought (for others and for myself), hugged my loved ones, hung out with my friends and extended family, and had dinner out with the boyfriend.
I have no idea how I’ve managed to get a decent sized blog post out of something I’m not really sure how to describe. It is just a feeling of peace and content at being where you belong I suppose; those who have been away will know what I’m talking about. You can’t quite put your finger on what it is that is so great about coming home but it’s definitely a good feeling.