I love Carnival. I suspect that the word ‘Carnival’ has conjured up images of feather clad women shaking their booties to a heavy samba beat and that’s why you’re nodding in agreement. Actually, Somerset Carnival couldn’t be further from this. The Carnival I am actually talking about is a procession of decorated tractors in November, which, let’s be honest, isn’t that conducive to feather bikinis.
Twelve days we have been living in our own house. I love it. I am a grown up again. I wander around the rooms in wonder that this is the place I now call home. I have told my Mum that I will have to be carried out of this house, she is not amused and thinks I have now jinxed this delightful pile of bricks and mortar (I had my fingers crossed the whole time so of course I didn’t).
Repatriation. You’d have thought that this would be the easy part, except that it isn’t. Having made sure that the first couple of weeks back in the UK were packed with things to do and people to see we have now arrived at the horrid realization that we have no home, none of our belongings, none of our clothes. Everything is the same, but everything is different too.
We have only been away for eleven months and so nothing looks, sounds or smells dramatically different to how it was a year ago. But.
He thought he was sick in his heart if you could be sick in that place.
James Joyce – A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Being homesick hits you at the most inopportune moments. It is the most obscure things that give you the twist in the stomach, the pull in the chest and the prickle behind the eyes. Most of the time it can be shaken off within a few minutes, but sometimes it stains the day with its desperation for familiarity and longing for belonging.