Just like that. With the grand celebrations of graduation done, I said see you later to my life in Austin. I love that city and the people too much to stay away forever. But I think it will be some time before I call it home again.
Just like that. I said hello to two weeks of beautiful British summer time in London. I adapted to some sort of life in a country that I could call a second home. It was easy to assimilate back into a culture that enveloped me for three months. Not even six months ago had I left, now to return. I didn’t think I’d be back so soon. A homecoming.
So easily I walked the streets. Tan stones pass underneath white sneakers. Sweet melodies running in ears. The whistle of brakes on the underground tracks, as a hot wind rushes past, pulling strands of my hair with it. More than once, frequenting Hyde Park to bask in the sun. A stroll around the water, through fields. An evening with Pimm’s in hand, watching swans glide by in a nearly perfect reflection of the sky.
It’s easy to fall in love with a city like London in the summer, viewing everything from an enchanted, dreamy headspace. Everything is simple. The 45-minute ride across the city on the underground doesn’t seem so bad. I feel like one in the same with the girl in platform boots and a trench coat on the Overground line. I see the kids my age walking down the street, dressed in 80s neon-colored suits and Dr. Martens with shaved heads and cross earrings. I feel the metaphorical shake of their fists in society’s face, insinuating “I’m not like you” – a subculture not so different from those at home, but I’m entranced from my outsider’s perspective.
Each day becomes a slice of life. I try to make a schedule I can live by. Morning yoga. Latte. Reflection. Work. Wandering. Afternoon latte. A stroll in the park. Visit with friends. Take to the pubs. A life I could step into. Maybe it’s all a romantic’s view through hazy summer eyes. A girl on holiday. No school to bother her. No work. She does as she pleases. Just living her life.
Just living her life.
Just living her life.
Am I not just living my life?
A morning meeting by the water. Coffee in hand. A fresh face. A new friendship to hold. A missed connection.
And another. A friend from the recent past. But it’s a surprise. Still, never the right timing. A plane ticket with an unfortunate deadline.
Just like that. Twelve hours on a plane. Add another six hour time difference. A whole new world in Saigon. Or maybe they call it Ho Chi Minh City. And the next chapter begins. It feels like I’ve been here before. In some ways I have – moving somewhere I’ve not been, not knowing anyone. And yet I’m received with the same energy and welcoming of internationals and locals alike. It doesn’t feel so strange. It doesn’t feel so scary. It feels like I should be here.
I’m just living my life. I’ll figure it out when I get there.
Another time. Across the world. When the stars align. I’ll meet you there.
Photo taken in Hyde Park, London, by Sara Feigin.