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Monday, August 04, 2008 


I drum my fingers impatiently (is there any other way?) until my nail beds tingle. When I'm too distracted to handle the task at hand I know it, and am aware of the mistakes I'm prone to making. I've had errors booking plane tickets before, and I'm determined not to err in my flustered state today. Especially when this is running at a whopping and nonrefundable $1600.
LHR? Check.
SFO? Check.
August 12th? Check.
Wait, August 12th, 2008? Ah, check.
Vegetarian meal? Check.
Aisle seat? Check.
One way? *gulp* check.

I enter the card details, hover the arrow over the purchase button, shut my eyes and click. "For the best," I think. When I look back at the screen I'm greeted with "Error, reenter payment information."

I bolt out of my chair. A reprieve! The universe is sending me a clear and simple message: Don't Go! I pace the room. I had purposefully avoided giving it much thought, but suddenly a moment of reflection was forced upon me, and I ponder how hard this move is going to be and how much I don't want to do it. "I could just stay here," my brain suggests. Yes, of course! I know what's waiting for me in San Francisco: a fantastic new job, the most wonderful boyfriend ever, an awesome new flat. I'll get married, make babies, and other such joyous and adult-like events. Suddenly this pause makes me realize I'm at a crossroads in my life. Why wouldn't I want to delay such definitive happiness? I could stay here, do a post-post-grad, go to the pub every night, take up smoking, maintain this pasty white hue of my skin, continuously duck the Home Office for not having a visa, stay poor and lonely... My mind rifles through these and a million other self-destructive thoughts. Brain screams, "anything, ANYTHING to keep from growing up!" I flounce on the bed and entertain various Peter Pan scenarios, none of which involve any responsibility or repercussions.

I lean up and look up out the bay window at the gray and misty summer skies. I start to think about sunshine, hot tubs, cable cars, ripe avocados, Obama, Napa Valley, and swimming in the pools of money my new American salary provides. I think back to when I first arrived, so overwhelmed and yet thrilled, walking along the riverbanks of my new city, and realize part of me wishes for that rush all over again. "The Thames is a fascinating body of water, but it's no God damned Pacific Ocean!!"

I get up and go through with it. Confirmation code appears. I sigh. Since I left home when I was eighteen, I've never spent more than four years in one place. Maybe that's just who I am.

Fare thee well (even though you haven't left yet). I think we all know, however, that dodging the Home Office is no challenge.

So, does the blog become An American in San Francisco?

Bloody confirmation codes. Grumble Grumble.

Funny, I left LHR on 8/12/07...and felt much the same way you do. I don't think one quite ever recovers from living in England...there will always be a longing even though life does go on.

And so again, Monica shook the dust from her sandals and left town, leaving a trail of broken hearts and Quiznos wrappers in her wake.

It's important to pay attention to the universe's signs... but I think having a fantastic job in SF, great boyfriend and the Pacific Ocean (oh how I miss you!!) waiting is the bigger sign to pay attention to :)

Yay! My baby is coming home!

Although maybe she isn't my baby anymore ...


Screw you, London! You've had her long enough. I'm getting my best friend back! (But you can come visit her anytime.)

Can't wait for you to come home! (And yes, no matter how long you've been gone, the US is still home! That's why your blog is "AN AMERICAN in London."

Love ya!
~ Heather

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