I’m at the airport.
It’s been a strange couple of days. Monday I decided I just needed to tackle the packing. It was something I had put off but it needed to be done! I think I have remembered everyone and more. My back pack is full. I have too many clothes, I know that. But once I have finished with the elephants in Sri Lanka, a few items plus a pair of trainers will go. Being in the water with the elephants will obviously ruin clothes. So it’s only the first few weeks where I have too much and then I’ll be getting rid of some and the back won’t be quite so full.
I won’t go into everything I packed, clothed wise it’s pretty obvious – t-shirts, shorts, maxi skirt, dress, bikinis, long sleeved shirt, light cardigan, flip flops (beach and shower), hat.
I also have hiking boots, how much I wear them we shall see! They are very heavy!
A Turkish towel, which can be used for showers and beach, as well as a blanket on journeys and a big scarf. It’s thin and very lightweightso will dry quickly, and it’s not fluffy so it won’t cover me in bits.
Sleeping bag liner, no actual sleeping bag – too heavy, bulky and hot.
Rich Tea Biscuits (this was mum”s idea) just a bit of home comfort and something plain to eat.
Robinson’s mini squash bottle, again a home comfort and something to help drink more water.
Shampoo and conditioner bars from Lush – a little bit of luxury but also better than liquid bottles. I have cut my hair from being lower back to collarbone length so it will be a lot easier to manage. Hopefully the bars will serve me well, they smell delicious!
I have a tiny bit of make up, just a palette with concealer, powder and blush as well as a mascara. I don’t plan to wear it much but there will be some days that I want to make that little bit of effort. My freckles will come out in a few days, they always make me look more alive!
Playing cards, notepad and pens, fly swatter (thanks mum), mosquito net, mirror, kindle, iPad, spare old phone, adapter, bandana, hair ties (probably the most I’ve ever owned), insect repellent, sun cream, soap, money belt, laundry sheets, medicines and pain killers.
Pick pocket proof pants! They are short style and have 2 pockets on the front to hold a passport and money etc. They were £29 from Amazon so I only got one pair. I thought I could wear normal pants underneath and then wear these on top. Safety first!
I think that’s everything. Writing it out, there doesn’t seem a lot for being the only stuff I own! But the bag is heavy!
So after I had packed, I went to see B. We had a loverly tea with G too and then got planning on our Indonesia trip. We have now booked the first night in a hotel in Jakarta for the night B arrives. We then have rough plan of where we will be going and how long we will be staying in each place. Full details will be on another post.
B then drove me back to my parent’s house. The 10 minute journey seemed to last a life time but also go in a flash. We hugged and I didn’t want to let go. We both welled up and hugged again. But it’s only 3 months to the day that we will see each other. I say only, but as we have only ever spent 2 weeks apart from when we became friends, and we are used to seeing esch other multiple times a week, 3 months is a long time. We are going to have Skype dates, B will be having lunch and I will be having dinner so we can eat together.
I got into the house, and had a cry. So many tears.
I went into see mum and dad, they were in the dark so that was good. Until mum asked me to turn the light on so she could see me! They didn’t comment on the tear stained face, but just kept me talking asking about our planning.
Mum had bought me a book – The White Bone, which is about elephants. But then decided it was too sad, so it’s waiting for when I return. They had written me a card too, which I have with me.
My nights sleep was quite restless, I woke at 2am and didn’t get back to a deep sleep. Not really much change in my usual sleep pattern these days.
This morning I felt sick. Today is the day and I was so scared.
I spent the morning unpacking my backpack to get a t-shirt to wear as I had packed them all (I know, what an idiot). Luckily I have used packing cubes so it was easy to locate and repack! I then sorted out the final bits that were left in my room.
My sister M came round and dad came home from work so we had lunch together with mum. I had a peanut butter sandwich as I couldn’t manage anything else. They had a chatter over lunch, talking about nightclubs and what mum and dad used to do when they went out. I couldn’t speak much, my stomach was churning.
It was then time to go.
M wasn’t coming to the airport, so I had to say goodbye to her there. We had a good hug and again I didn’t want to let go. Mum said come on this is your adventure, exciting and happy, no tears. One last hug and we got in the cars.
More tears in the back of the car. I just keep thinking if I wasn’t doing this alone, if we had been driving to meet him and his family at the airport for us both to fly off together, it would still be hard to say goodbye, but there would be more excitement. I feel scared and alone.
We went to the Hilton Hotel at terminal 4 Heathrow as we arrived at 3.30pm and my flight is 9.20pm! Better to be early! We had a cup of tea and then walked down the tunnel to the terminal. My check in desk didn’t open until 5.20pm do we still had an hour to wait. Dad asked the man if we could check in as there were people quwing but that was for first class and premier seats. I snapped a little, which I feel bad about, saying we just needed to come back when it was open. We went and got some magazines and read them in the sunshine. I didn’t read mine (and I’ve just realised mum took it with her) but just waited. We went inside and I had to queue. I thought this was it, the goodbye, but they said they would wait for me to get my boarding pass. So I queued and they waited for about 40 minutes.
And then it was time. Mum said just a quick hug, no tears. And she held me tightly and kissed me, saying this was my adventure and I was going to have an amazing time. A tight hug from dad and a pat on the back, and off I went. Tears in my eyes and mum’s but I knew I had to go otherwise I would break down.
Through security with tears down my face, I guess they see it a lot. My hand luggage was kept back so I had to wait for ages, luckily it was just a liquids check rather than a full back search. And then I was through.
Duty free purfume filled the air, bright dazzling lights and lots of people with wheelie trolleys going back and forth.
I decoded to get some dinner. I secretly wanted a last McDonald’s! But no such luck. I had not much choice after walking up and down twice. I settled on The Commission, which had a varied menu with burgers and mains. I was tempted by a lemon chicken and sweet potato dish, and ordered a coke. Meal one on my own. It was OK, the food was very lemoney and I wished I had gone with a chicken burger but it filled me up.
Whilst I was eating he text me, wishing me a good flight and an amazing time. I just want him here. I want him with me.
I’m now sat at gate 2 waiting to board. Flight has been delayed by 25 minutes. Hope this doesn’t cause a rush the other end between Mumbai and Goa.
He asked me how I was feeling. I don’t know how I feel. I don’t feel like this is real. Even now, sitting at the airport alone, having said goodbye to all my family and friends, I don’t feel like it’s happening. I almost feel like I’m looking at someone else, watching them plan and go on an adventure. I think when I step off the plane, and the heat, smells and sounds hit me, it will jolt me into life. I need to live this adventure. Sazzle needs to live this adventure.