Friday, June 03, 2011
Well, I've been a terrible blogger. I'm more of a photo person, and uploading photos has been spotty. So I just haven't done anything! But I'm on the eve of leaving and I'm having all sorts of thoughts swirling around.
Temperatures finally warmed up today, and I went bike riding. It wasn't such a long ride, a few miles from one end of town, to the center of town, and back. But it allowed me to see new sights and process my visit a bit. I've been down a bit this week: stuff going on at home in my absence; being in a house with whining kids and an unhappy couple; missing my own kids; a bit of loneliness; cold weather; no break-a-sweat exercise; gray skies. I couldn't really put my finger on what was causing me to feel so blue. But today, riding along a shady creek, listening to the rhythm of the pedals, it all started falling together.
I'm going to miss this place. I like the people I work with. If I were to live here I would enjoy working with them. I like the city. Other than the dreadful weather they've had this month, it's a pretty nice city to live in. I haven't had to drive, but have relied on public transportation (and the kindness of strangers) to schlep me around. I like hearing words like "frock" and "lovely" (pronounced loof-lay) and "fancy" (as in, I rather fancy curry), and I've liked learning new words (such as chav and fascinator and invigilation) and new customs. I met Jayne in the salon, David in the coffee shop, Jo in the office, Peter & John at the pub, Ana and Julian and Liz at work, Fr. Kevin at church, Lisa at the house ... all people I'd probably like to hang out with, if this were my 'real' life. I've loved going and doing and seeing and exploring: York, London, Liverpool, Derbyshire, Castleton. So I'm going to miss the life I've briefly created over here. It's been just a hiccup of time in my life, but it's been one I've enjoyed. It's not been without challenges, but nothing I couldn't deal with.
I love my real life. I love working/studying at Clemson, and my family and friends back home. I love my house, and my dog, and my neighbors. I adore my children. I love Greenville, and the US. But there's a sense in which it is a privilege to have a 'hiccup' in life -- an interval where taken out of your element, you make it your own. That's what I've done. I'm proud of the work I've done here. I'm happy with the life I've forged here, even if it's been just for a month.