I seem to have travelled a bit too far in all the confusion, for I have arrived back in the Ice Age.
Everything is frozen. The first thing I had to do when I got back (after eating sausage rolls and sleeping for four hours, I mean) was buy some boots so that I could actually remain upright for any length of time. I have been home for over two days now and still haven’t seen anyone beyond my immediate family, since everyone is snowed in or reluctant to drive in these conditions.
To be honest, I’m a little relieved, because it is quite nice to just relax with The Parents and Kat the Cat in a nice warm living room with twinkling Christmas tree lights and Christmas TV and a wee drink, without feeing guilty that I’m not out and about rushing all over the place trying to visit everyone. I’ll see them when things thaw out a bit. In the meantime, it’s cosy relaxation all the way!
I haven’t been hit too badly by the ‘reverse culture shock’ I’d been warned about, since I haven’t really been out much. It is, however, somewhat embarrassing when the girl in the shop says “That’ll be one fifty” in a strong Ballymena accent, and you reach her the money with your hand touching your elbow most respectfully, and then try to thank her by saying “Kamsahamnida” and bowing your head politely. I also took my shoes off out of habit at the front door of my parents’ house, but this didn’t look as strange as it might have at another time of the year, when my shoes weren’t caked in snow and ice.
Maybe I’m not the exotic stranger I fancied myself as, after all, and am in fact just a normal wee Ballymena girl at heart…