It says a lot about the pace of ‘normal’ life when you consider that it has taken us almost a year to write the remaining two posts in the blog. We can now go forth and get it printed!
The previous posts were from South Korea and Japan. We planned to continue heading North to Vladivostok to get the Trans Siberian train back to Europe but some guy called Putin changed the visa rules and we would have had to travel to Edinburgh or London to have our mouths swabbed and our retinas scanned first as part of the new visa process. It seemed easier to re-plan and so we decided to spend our final weeks in the Philippines and Kong Kong instead.
Coming home was hard. I don’t remember much about the second leg of the fight between Dubai and Manchester. I remember Emirates being very generous with Irish whisky. I also remember the air hostess on that leg sounding like Vera Duckworth which was too familiar a culture shock, I decided to make further use of the airlines generosity. In hindsight, we should have planned our return a bit better. It was the night before the flight home that it really dawned on us, we were returning to Blighty after travelling for 10 wonderful months through 19 amazing countries. We had no jobs, no home and our possessions were in a container in a Lincolnshire farmyard somewhere that we didn’t know (the container was picked up from our house before we left). No wonder I was grateful for Emirates hospitality.
Almost a year on, we are now back in a house with our possessions (including the cat) and we are both working. We are very grateful for Tracy’s mum and dad for looking after the cat and giving us a roof, a bed and food for a few weeks on our return. Finding work was the easy part, adjusting to a 9-5 routine was brutal. Two weeks after our return I had a contract in Scarborough. I found myself sitting on a wall outside council offices during a 60 minute lunch eating a cold prawn sandwich from Greggs, staring out across a grey Scarborough Bay amongst the retired folk as seagulls hovered with intent above me. Two weeks earlier I’d been running across Clearwater Bay in the humid lush green mountains surrounding Hong Kong. A savage return indeed but hey we can’t complain it had been an amazing trip and we were lucky to pull it off!
Thanks for reading.
Paul & Tracy