After spending the summer season in America, arriving at Heathrow Airport was definitely a little bit disappointing. It turns out that everything you see in the opening and closing credits of Love Actually is a lie. The love of my life wasn't unexpectedly waiting for me, but that's probably because it's Josh Homme and he has no idea I exist. Even worse, there weren't any welcoming balloons or banners, and there certainly wasn't any cake. The only thing that was waiting for me was a tube full of London commuters, who I only ended up unintentionally injuring with my outrageously large backpack. I can guarantee that those commuters were not expecting a side of minor bodily harm with their morning coffee.
Eventually, I made it to my brother's house and he at least gave me a decent cup of tea. I very rarely judge (because it'd be extremely hypocritical), but I do judge people by their ability to make tea. My first boyfriend used to make an awful cup of tea, as it was often 90% milk. That ridiculous milk to tea ratio should've told me that it was never going to work out between us and I should've instantly ended the relationship.
Once my sister finished work, my brother and I met up with her to go for dinner. She might not have cried like she'd promised but we did have an embarrassingly long hug, which is probably the maximum amount of public affection I could've handled anyway. Too much affection causes me literal physical pain, especially public affection. The only exception is when I'm on hangover highway because then I'd probably even accept a cuddle from Hitler's corpse.
At dinner we claimed it was my birthday in an attempt to get a free dessert. This meant that I finally received the big fuss I'd been waiting for. Granted, the fuss was from a stranger singing happy birthday to me ten months early, but I'll still take it. I also sincerely doubt that the waiter believed that it was my birthday given that he still charged me for the dessert. It's looking significantly more unlikely that I'll be hosting my own hustling show anytime soon.
I spent the night at my sister's house so we could exchange tales of terribly poor choices without mentally scarring my younger brother. There's only so much a sister and brother should know about each other before there becomes a need for therapy, or the neuralyzer from Men in Black. Even though I haven't seen my sister since May, it wasn't long before she was telling me to shut up. In fairness, it was because she had important business to attend to. Although I'm pretty sure that the 'important business' was actually her sending a reply to a match on Happn that would still make her sound appealing.
My sister had to go to work early the next morning, because she is actually a successful adult with a promising career. This meant that I just stayed in bed catching up on This Is England '90 whilst eating too much of her cereal. I'm more than slightly convinced that I was the real winner that morning. Eventually, I headed off to pick up my backpack from my brother's house so I could cause minor bodily harm again on the tube.
Thankfully, the tube wasn't as busy this time so injuries were kept to a minimum. Unfortunately, I decided that it was a good time to catch up on my podcasts. This meant that I spent a lot of time laughing out loud at apparently nothing. I was surprised to find that there wasn't a straitjacket waiting for me when I get off the tube. I might do an awful impression of Buffalo Bill too often, but I'm not actually a psychopath. Although I did once spend a concerning amount of time combining a video I took of liver being cooked to a clip from Silence of the Lambs. I like to think it was because my dissertation was due and I was severely procrastinating. As they say, desperate times call for desperate measures.
Finally, I met my parents (who had just landed at Heathrow themselves) and I gatecrashed their lift home. I'd seen them in San Francisco only two weeks before so it wasn't much of a big reunion. In fact, it wasn't until I got home and saw my youngest sister that I got the reaction my ego secretly wanted. At last, someone cried. On reflection, they were potentially tears of misery rather than joy because we were back to bickering within half an hour.
Disappointingly, I can confirm that coming home after a few months away is not as much of a big deal as you'd like to think it is. It appears that your family and friends will selfishly continue on with their lives without you. Sure, they'll want to hear interesting stories from your time away but apart from that, everything is the same. Okay, not everything is the same because one of my friends grew a beard and my youngest sister now has a nose piercing. But apart from that, it feels like I haven't been away at all.
It may have been an amazing summer but all I'm left with now is a copious amount of freckles, crippling debt and broken bras that don't even fit. Hopefully, I'll get to work another season soon and I can't bloody wait.