In one week, I’m officially moving back to the States!
During my final days as a London resident, I’m trying hard not to dwell on the day I leave, but to focus on making the best of every day I have left. My friend gave me advice that really resonated and my daily mantra the past week and a half has been to be extremely focused on living in the present. Focusing only on the day ahead of you and doing that day really freaking well.
I meant to get this post up yesterday, but a really amazing lunch, followed by the pub with girlfriends sidetracked my productivity for the evening. 😉 When I fly back, I’m going to spend two weeks with family and friend in Atlanta and in a little less than three weeks, fly back to California and resume life in the City of Angels.
When I left California in July 2012, nearly four years ago (woah…I really have no idea how the time went so quickly), I never intended on being gone so long. The plan was to travel for a year, come back and resume life as normal pre-trip. I actually uttered the words, “I’d never live in another country except the United States.” Verbatim.
But as life and fate would have it, that’s not the way things turned out.
I’ve loved England ever since study abroad in 2003, but could’ve never imagined falling in love with London and creating a home here. I’ve talked about having a bakery for over a decade, but never imagined going to pastry school. I’m so incredibly grateful for the way things worked themselves out.
Lately, everyone asks if I’m excited to be going home and I’m unable to answer. Home has always been slightly difficult for me to define because I’m fortunate enough to have had three homes – Atlanta, Los Angeles and London. Like everything, each city has pros and cons but they all have a piece of my heart and soul.
Going home is super bittersweet. For so many months in the fall, I stuck my head in the sand about the decision and the reality of an impending expiring visa. Leaving London is hard and sad, but once I made the decision, a huge amount of anxiety was lifted.
There’s something about London that for the past two and a half years, has made me fall in love with it again and again. Even when I get frustrated with the grey skies, or overcrowded public transport, or not being able to buy something as easily (or cheaply) as I could in the States, I’ll be won over with something as simple as that exact thing I’m frustrated by; sitting on the tube and completed amazed at how well the city is connected (I’ve taken a walking tour of the history of the tube, and it’s fascinating).
Despite being sad about leaving, I’m really excited for the next chapter. Excited to begin my career as a pastry chef. It’ll be wonderful being closer to my family and friends in the States, and I’m SO ready to have a place to settle (where there are no visa expiration dates) and have all of my things in one place versus scattered around everywhere. The sunshine and warm weather will be nice too. 😉
For the next six days, I’m going to explore a few new places (Transport Museum!!) and stroll through some of my old favorites. Try to take in as much of London as I can and cherish all the time left with my English and expat friends.
Even though I’m leaving, I’ll always have an incredible city and friends to come back to and visit. And they can come visit me in the States!
So, as the man Biggie Smalls once said, “I’m going, going, back, back to Cali, Cali.”
Now, if anyone knows of any good spots in LA looking for a pastry chef, let me know… 😉