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where do i even begin?

November 18, 2011

I woke up craving a cup of tea this morning. Earl gray with a splash of milk. And a biscuit for dunking. There is nothing revolutionary about this statement. Millions of people drink tea all day, every day. But this is new to me, this tea drinking thing. I am, and have always been, a coffee girl through and through. I’ve never liked the taste of black tea (let alone milk), but here I am, after 5 months in London, craving tea. And biscuits for dunking.

It seems entirely unfair that just as I start adapting to life here (which took much adapting, I might add), I must now leave. Back to Montreal, to square one, to finding a place, to finding a job. Where do I even begin to tell you how I feel right now. What thoughts are swirling in my head. Where my heart is. The truth is I can’t, because I don’t know myself. One minute I’m crying, the next I want to live it up, to the fullest, every single second of the next two weeks. But what the Buddhists don’t tell you is exactly how to live fully in the present, knowing what the future holds. A long, cold winter, without him by my side. Skype dates (ugh!). Text messages (blech!). Phone calls (fuck!). Can I just tell you what I really think about this whole thing? It’s bullshit is what it is.

And now that I’ve told you what I really think, I’m going to step away from the computer. Very slowly. And have myself a cup of tea. And a biscuit for dunking.

Leaving you with images from Normandy, where we recently celebrated Joe’s brother’s birthday with the most amazing group of creatives — a film maker, a fashion designer, a milliner, a weaver, a photographer, a chef, a writer, a make-up artist, a painter. Gays, drag queens (Julian by day, Jacqui Potato by night), heterosexuals… one big happy family. This is the first time I’ve cross processed slide film and though I can’t say that I entirely digg it (I prefer my photos to be a bit softer, more natural, mat), it was worth experimenting with and somehow lent itself well to the moodiness of the sky.

And while it is still fresh in my mind (and because I want to remember everything of my time here), weekend highlights included:

  • 30 quid worth of cheese. So much cheese that it took me nearly a week to even consider eating another morsel of what is generally one of my favorite foods on the planet.
  • Building a bonfire for Guy Fawkes night and drinking champagne under the stars.
  • Champagne. Glass upon glass of glorious champagne.
  • Breakfast laid out each morning in the dining room. Everyone stumbling out of bed in their own time for a coffee and croissant.
  • Getting dressed up for a catered dinner Saturday night (everyone was stylin’).
  • Feeling like we were characters in a game of Clue — Mrs. Peacock did it in the library with a cheese knife.
  • Profiteroles birthday cake. I think I found God that night inside one of those puff pastries.
  • The venue. A Manoir in Normandy. Holy freaking luxury!
  • Sitting by the fire watching Twin Peaks Sunday morning. 16 people sprawled out, drowsy (and probably still drunk) from the previous night’s extravanganza. Nothing quite like David Lynch on a hangover.
  • Swimming polar bear style in the freezing cold pond… in bras and boxer shorts and t-shirts, you name it.
  • Walking along the beach on a windy day collecting treasures for the birthday boy.
  • Seeing mistletoe for the first time — big balls of mistletoe hanging high up in tall trees, like prehistoric nests.
  • Wine tasting at the local Épicier’s.
  • Eating candy and watching Bridesmaids at the cinema on the ferry home (let me repeat that… cinema on the ferry, people! Awesome!).
So you can see why I really don’t ever want to leave.

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12 Comments leave one →
  1. November 18, 2011 11:29 am

    Mmmm. Earl Grey with Milk, and I’ve never even been to the UK. Fantastic Blog:)

  2. November 18, 2011 12:49 pm

    I love that photo!

  3. November 18, 2011 1:06 pm

    Trite to say this, but, where there’s a will there’s a way…. Good luck with your journey back to Montreal. (And no wonder the feel of these photos look different than “usual” film. Looks great though)

  4. November 18, 2011 4:24 pm

    Glorious! What a world. Makes me want to go out and live larger!

  5. November 18, 2011 7:05 pm

    ugh, amazing! i just went on an adventure, right here, in my basement. please tell me i can find those pants somewhere…

  6. Lisa permalink
    November 18, 2011 7:50 pm

    And it just keeps getting better!
    NORMANDY.
    CHAMPAGNE.
    ICE DIPS.
    DRAG QUEENS.
    C’mon!!!!

    What wild wonder-filled adventures. I *love* it.
    I must say, you have acquired quite the menagerie of experiences in the past 5 months (Man, it sure did go quick….WHEW!).
    It’s been a joy to shadow your journey thru all the amazing stories & beautiful imagery.

    Take Montreal by storm, ma cherie!
    Catch up with friends & family.
    Get reacquainted with your coffee habit.
    Blow up the phone with texts & calls and whatever else you must do in the in-between. Before you know it, you’ll be leap frogging the pond and off on Round 2 of your Tea ‘n Biscuit escapades with The British Boy!!

    xo, Lisa

  7. prin permalink
    November 19, 2011 3:39 am

    Why not just marry him and stay?

  8. Carol permalink
    November 19, 2011 5:16 am

    You have my deepest sympathy regarding the Skype dates… although necessary, they are a constant reminder of not being together. I’m experiencing it myself right now.

    I hope that you are back in each others arms again very soon 🙂

  9. November 19, 2011 4:17 pm

    I am sorry this is coming to an end for you. That totally sucks. I wish you could just live there. Why not? I assume it is for some stupid political reason. My hope is that you two will live on, no matter what, and figure out how to live your best life together. xo

  10. November 22, 2011 3:50 pm

    I’m sorry that your time in England is coming to an end. I’ve so enjoyed reading about and seeing photos of your adventures. I can’t even imagine the pain and heartache of knowing that soon your love will be a whole ocean away. In the 5 years my husband and I have been together we’ve only ever been apart for 1 week at a time and those weeks are torture for both of us.

    I can understand a bit of the frustration of having to leave a place you are just beginning to get. I’m in a similar situation of finally learning to love the city I’m in, just as we decide that it is no longer financially smart for us to stay here. Right now it looks likely that we will move back to my small, northern hometown.

    Moving anywhere is always a bit of a risk. There are so many factors that you can never foresee, even if you’ve moved a lot. I just want to let you know that I think you are wonderfully brave for moving to England. When you first wrote about it here I admit I found myself jealous of your bravery, as moving overseas is a dream of mine. I was also very happy to (virtually) know you in the hopes that some of your bravery might rub off. I also think that your are incredibly brave to move back, especially knowing what you are leaving behind. Again, I don’t think it is something I could do. I know you probably don’t feel brave, but you are. Bravery isn’t a lack of fear, it is taking risks in spite of fear.

    *hugs* I wish you all the best.
    Ashley

  11. December 12, 2011 2:48 pm

    chapters closing. beautiful reflections, and though you muse about how to embrace the moment in light of what the future “might” hold (i refused to read the first 2 posts that popped up in my reader i was too excited and had to back track), you somehow manage to be doing just that.

    i love the dramatic contrast of this slide film. a vibrant change. it’s beautiful.

  12. January 6, 2012 8:43 pm

    I rarely am taken in so suddenly and so thoroughly by a blog…what is it I wonder? The hauntingly beautiful photos, the immense character brimming from the people captured there, your poetic yet grounded heart rippingly openly honest writing, so clear and poignant…I imagine it’s because you’re out there having a REAL experience and participating with your soul, rather than at home on the couch spinning out a life. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences…I can so relate to the sweet yearning for a place that’s become so beloved, partly because your beloved lives there. And your wedding day photos…well, they are magical. Crystal blessings! Janice

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