(I wrote this and never published it! What is wrong with me?! Anyway, here it is and watch for more updates!)
The movers came and packed away all our things. The house was full of stuff, then boxes, then nothing. The kids enjoyed all the empty space and new perspectives, but I was sad. We had our going away party, our final inspection with the landlord and then we were staying in a flat in Harrogate. It's amazing how circular life can be. We were back in the place where we started, though this time there was less time for exploring as the kids were still in school in Leeds. But we knew our way around and enjoyed visiting the playground and gardens again. The last week flew by. And the weather just kept on its same miserable pace. The last day of school for the kids, it just poured the entire day and all plans for pictures and visiting at the end of the school day went down the drain. The kids came out of school loaded with gifts and cards, books and pictures and special, special memories.
"I didn't get any gifts from school." Lu-lu said. PrincessE responded with "We all got the gift of friendship from this school! So everyone got gifts."
There weren't too many tears, just a few. And it was hard to tell if those were from exhaustion or sadness or fear. Or maybe all of the above.
We saw some friends for last meals and visits. Then it was time to go to Manchester and get on the plane. Three years, gone in the blink of an eye. I didn't feel like I was going home, I felt like I was leaving home.
We arrived to heat and humidity. The kids didn't remember what that felt like and were melting almost imediately. After sorting out taxis we were on our way to G-Daddy's house.
Noodle: "I like the spinny things on your ceilings, G-Daddy." We were all puzzled as to why ceiling fans were such a novelty when we remembered that she was two when we left the US and there are no ceiling fans in England.
The kids were all slightly stymied by the screen doors (there are no screens on doors or windows in the UK) and both PrincessE and Lu-lu attemped to go *through* one when we were visiting with some friends.
We picked up our new car while the kids did a painting project with their G-Daddy. We played at the pool and visited with friends. We enjoyed the sunshine. And then, before we knew it our ten days was up! Time for the road trip to begin.
When we realized our orders were going to be Los Angeles, we decided that it would be a good opportunity for us to travel across the US to see our friends and family that we didn't get much of a chance to see for the last three years. But Dadam's leave wasn't going to accomodate a month of road trip. So, we decided that the kids and I would drive and Dadam would go ahead to LA. It would be an Epic cross country road trip.
And that's where we're at. A brief six hour drive north into upstate New York and our road trip has begun. Our path isn't very westerly yet, but we'll get there. It's lovely here. Lots of room for the kids to run around and friends to play with, I even feel a bit like I'm on holiday, there's just nothing to worry about.