I can’t stress enough how much planning had gone into this one little plane ride. There were the extensive hours spent sorting through the bureaucratic cluster bombs and semantics-driven quagmires of applying for a UK student visa. I spent hours calling real estate offices at eight in the morning (fail). There was the anxiety of finding temporary housing with LSE and then the sweat and tears finding the right flight. Once this was all taken care of there was the packing, the unpacking, the repacking, the debates on whether or not I needed four pairs of Nike athletic shoes (I didn’t) or if I was allowed to bring tooth paste with my carry-on luggage (I should have). I would like to take this moment to thank my mom for helping me maintain my sanity while I complained and ate my feelings.
But despite all the anxiety, man-tears, wavering faith in mankind, and a shaky belief that the UK was actually on Earth, the departure was, actually, bittersweet Zen.
I drove to the airport with my family with that kind joviality that can only come after successful planning. I credit my family for the support given to me during this whole process. They would listen to me whine like a child about forms and then Solomon would calmly explain them to me. I was so stressed that I couldn’t even enjoy the fact that I had a talking dog. Perhaps its best I couldn’t listen to Solly. It’s always tennis ball this or poop smell that; or sometimes it’s a tennis ball that smells like poop. God, Solly, grow up.
The Hallmark moment of my parents watching their baby go through security successfully on his way to a prestigious graduate school was ruined by my consumerist hubris. Of course I needed to bring my speakers and subwoofer for my laptop in carry on. After a thorough search of my frame pack by Sully and Murph, I was cleared through security and waved goodbye to my parents. It was on to the American Airlines dance party.
It is amazing how transitions will make me miss a situation, however temporary. When I left New Orleans it was difficult to see beyond the obvious sorrow of leaving an amazing city with limitless cultural and social contributions. Also, leaving New Orleans meant leaving something familiar in the wonderful relationships I had the fortune of coming into with my amazing girlfriend Jen as well as my great group of friends. It was incredibly challenging to realize that leaving New Orleans for New Hampshire was merely a step to living in another country; probably because I had so much figurative and literal mileage to cover before that dream could be realized.
Sure living in New Hampshire with my parents for the past month has been a lot of Scrabble and Netflix, but there was something very comforting about being in my original home surrounded by the people who support and love me. They did so much “loving and supporting” that I gained ten pounds.
Despite that, thanks Mom and Dad. I couldn’t have done it without you.