I'm at Heathrow airport - or Sodom - depending on your view of the place. It's not my favorite airport by a long shot, but it will get me back to Melbourne in 24 hours, the A380 hopefully keeping all engines functioning for the first part of the journey to Singapore, God willing.
I haven't thought about going home at all, other than I have changed my sterling for Australian dollars - that is the sum of it. It's not that I haven't been trying to think about going home - or back to Australia as I tend to refer to it. I've just been busy for the last five weeks having fun. I know that when I arrive in Melbourne early Sunday morning either Blarney or Barney will be there to pick me up. I've got my coat in my bag, it's not cold enough to warrant it in the airport. In the back of my mind I know that I'm coming back to what could be construed as a big pile of poo - but I'm determined to make the very best of it.
The last five weeks have been some of the best of my life.
My wonderful friends have outdone themselves - and for those reading this, I'm not sure how I can repay you for showing me such a great time.
I've seen stuff I never thought I'd seen, from the hacked out tongue of a Dutch dissident to the joys of some of the greatest art in the world to the natural beauty of New England in fall as they so call it.
I've roamed foreign streets with my head held high.
I've had some great nights out on the turps - and found that wandering the National Gallery with a few pints inside you is as fun as watching Antiques Roadshow under the influence of interesting tobacco. (Yeah, that was pretty fun... but we're not supposed to talk about that....)
I've discovered that I do London transport with the flair of a native - so ingrained is the tube map in my head.
I've learned that self-preservation is more important that self-service, every time, all the time.
I also know that if I had Dorothy's red shoes and clicked my heels three times and said, "There's no place like home," I'm not sure where I would end up. Toledo is my spiritual home - hands down - it's resonance was off the geiger counter. London is the place that feels like home - even though I haven't lived there for eleven years - it's just a place where I feel good. Melbourne is where the bulk of my friends are and all my possessions reside - and this is a great thing too.
But looking back over the last five weeks, the thing that comes to mind most of all. Though things may not be perfect, I am one of the luckiest girls in the world.
Can't ask for anything more than that.
Talk soon after the jetlag subsides. They're calling my flight.