Things I Love About Being Home
The morning after we got back from our trip, I woke up and thought I was in Vegas.
Er, I don’t mean the room was full of dancing girls and slot machines or anything like that (I mean, it’s a good room, but it’s not THAT good…), just that… you know that thing you sometimes get after a long journey (please tell me you know that thing, and that it’s not just me?), where you wake up in the morning, and for a few moments you’re not quite sure which of two worlds you’re currently inhabiting? I felt like that, and what was worse was that, when I’d worked out which world it was, it immediately felt like the WRONG one: I felt this huge wave of sadness hit me, and I haven’t quite managed to shake it off yet, try as I might.
I’m not going to talk about that, though. Because, well, it’s obnoxious, really, isn’t it? So, rather than dwelling on the fact that I’m no longer in sunny California, here’s quick list of the things I love about being back home…
01. People and pets
I think this goes without saying, but I couldn’t NOT say it, could I? We picked Rubin up as soon as we got home (He’d been staying with my in-laws, who did a great job of looking after him: their place basically IS Las Vegas, as far as Rubin is concerned…) and have spent the last couple of days catching up with family and friends. If it wasn’t for them, I’d never have come home…
02. My own bed
Our rental house was nice, but there’s really nothing like your own bed, is there? Or your own duvet, for that matter: the bed we slept in had sheets and blankets, which I always find SO uncomfortable – I basically had to fight my way out of the tangled sheets every morning, then spend the next 20 minutes carefully trying to drape them all over the bed again, knowing all the while that as soon as I got back in that night, they’d wind themselves around my legs again. I’ve no idea why sheets hate me so much, but give me a duvet any time. (Especially given that I’ve yet to meet an air-con system that didn’t make me feel like the kingdom has become trapped in perpetual winter…)
03. The Scottish Water
I’m referring here to the ACTUAL Scottish water, by the way, not Scottish Water the utility company. I have no feelings either way about Scottish Water the company, and I would’t have any particular feelings about the actual water either, if it wasn’t for my hair. Yes, you heard me: my HAIR. My hair hates all water except the stuff it’s used to, you see. I’m not sure if everyone’s hair is like this, but anytime I travel – even if it’s just across the border to England – my hair will register its displeasure by turning into a limp, frizzy mess, and refusing to behave, no matter what. That’s why I’m wearing my trademark messy bun in most of my holiday photos: any-time you see me with my hair like that, you can guarantee that either:
a) I couldn’t be bothered washing my hair that day.
b) I DID wash my hair that day, but it looked like ass.
Anyway, as I said, I don’t think Scottish water has magical properties or anything like that (It totally does, though.), but it’s the only stuff my hair likes, and if Amber’s hair ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy. Just ask Terry.
04. Not having to wear sunscreen every day
At home I DO wear sunscreen on my face most days, but it’s rare that I have to wear it on my body, too: mostly because it’s rare for me to see even a glimmer of sunshine here. On holiday in a place like California, though, I can’t set foot outside without first of all applying half a bottle of suncreen to every inch of exposed skin, and man, does that get old after a while. I mean, even the good sunscreen is a bit of a pain when you have to wear it constantly: I lost at least a couple of tops to the dreaded Sunscreen Stain (No matter how careful I am, I ALWAYS end up getting sunscreen on my clothes, and let me tell you, that stuff NEVER comes out. Trust me on this. No, seriously, whatever it is you’re about to suggest, I’ve tried it and it hasn’t worked. For this reason, I normally buy a handful of cheap tops from either Primark or H&M if I’m travelling somewhere hot, knowing I won’t be bringing them back again…), and the combination of long hair and sunscreen-sticky shoulders is another reason the messy bun had to be deployed so often. I love the sun, and absolutely detest the cold, but I DO enjoy feeling clean again, and not worrying that I’m going to stick to every surface I happen to come into contact with!
05. Being organised
So, you all probably know by now that I’m all about the organisation, and get almost as excited by a set of IKEA storage boxes as I do about a new dress. Can’t quite believe I just admitted that on the internet. GOD. Anyway, as much I enjoy a bit of organisation, I never seem to pull it off while I travel, so I spend the entire time in a state of chaos (and not even ORGANISED chaos, either: ACTUAL chaos), permanently panicking over when I last saw my passport, and where that lipstick is now, because I was SURE I put it in my makeup bag, but I just spent twenty minutes emptying my makeup bag onto the floor, and wait, is that a chicken in my bathroom? My perfectly-organised dressing table has never felt so good…
06. My closet
I could never live out of a suitcase. You know those people who travel around the world with just a backpack? Those people AMAZE me. Because, even although my method of packing involves basically just empting my closet INTO my suitcase, I still always end up feeling like I’ve got it all wrong, and I have absolutely NOTHING suitable to wear. Like, when I was in the Topshop at The Grove, for instance, I had to restrain myself from re-buying this skirt, because yes, sure, I already own it, but did I bring it with me? No, I did not. And OMG, why didn’t I bring that skirt? How can I live without it? THAT’S the kind of “crazy” we’re dealing with here, folks, and that’s why I’m very happy to be re-united with my closet. What me and my debit card have put together, let no man put asunder…
(I didn’t re-buy the skirt, by the way. I wanted to, though, which is almost as bad.)
07. Home is the place without ‘last-time-evers’
Oh, those ‘last time evers’! They’re the thing I hate most about vacation: the way I spend the last couple of days walking around saying “goodbye” to everything. “This is the last time I’ll ever sit on this chair,” I’ll think. The last time I’ll ever walk through this door/swim in that pool/eat in this restaurant. I’m a sentimental fool, it’s true, but I like the fact that home is the place without ‘last time evers’: the place it’s safe to love, because you know you won’t have to leave it anytime soon: or, if you do, at least you know you’ll always come back.
There’s a lot to be said for that.