DAY 8 and DAY 9: Returning to the Shire

Dragging myself out of bed on Saturday was very difficult indeed. It was raining (for the first time in the whole holiday), it was cold, it was dark and I didn’t want to leave New York. The same couldn’t be said for Imogen who was hella keen to get going to Macy’s and experience the largest store in the world for herself.

As fabulous as Macy’s was, the 20 minutes that we could allow for was simply not enough time to get excited about shopping. Instead, I loitered around the perfume section asking for samples and then wafting the perfume soaked strip of paper around my face whilst making approving noises. To try and cover up that I couldn’t afford any of the perfumes, I would pretend to think for a long time and then say confidently, “I think that I’ll wait until I’m home to visit the *insert name of perfume here* counter to purchase this, just so that it doesn’t get broken on the plane”. As slick as I made this seem, my exhausted make-up free face, dripping wet hair and tracksuit definitely did not say classy, sophisticated lady with plenty of money to spend.

The rest of the morning was spent packing and enduring the long drive back up to Boston airport which was fine, if a little boring. We’d all lost the excitement that comes with going on holiday and were becoming irritated by the confinement of the Duranga. I can safely say that we were all fed up of each other’s company and couldn’t wait to arrive at the airport to get 5 minutes to ourselves. We did eventually arrive at Boston International which was a huge relief, for me especially because for the last hour I was very aware of the spider that kept crawling between myself and Edward.

In the airport I was able to spend the last of my holiday money on a neck pillow which was great for 2 reasons; firstly because I could nap comfortably on the plane without disabling myself and secondly because I could use it as a noise blocker when Ed and Imi were annoying me. The long haul flight back to Paris went very slowly indeed even though we were well catered for by the hostesses. I’m still not sure if it’s a long haul thing or an American thing that we were handed out moist towelettes and warm cloths multiple times during the flight. Don’t get me wrong, it was wonderful to be woken up by an airhostess handing me a warm towelette with a pair of tweezers but still I find it a completely bizarre concept.

As we started our decent into Paris, I was feeling much more refreshed and less bitchy than I was the day before. It was for this reason that I was able to properly enjoy the stereotypical French music that was played as we landed and why I didn’t really mind that we were sat so far into Scum-Class that it took us almost an hour to get off the plane. A cheeky croissant later and I was on full form. I was singing my way through the airport (much to my dad’s dismay) and was cracking out some top notch customs song suggestions. For those of you who don’t know what a customs song is, allow me to explain.

Myself, Imogen and Edward (when he’s in the mood) play a game called customs songs where the aim of the game is to sing the best song that you can whilst walking out of customs. For example, this year I chose Like A Virgin as my song, a situation that plays out like so. As the airport customs staff member said, ‘you can go now’, I stated to sing, ‘I made it through the wilderness, yes I made thro-ou-ough,’ as loudly as I could conceivably get away with. Other song suggestions from this year included, I’m A Survivor- Destiny’s Child and Cosmic Girl- a Jamiroquai classic that Imogen sung and accompanied with the dance moves that she stole from Just Dance.

A short flight across the Channel and we were back in Birmingham. I didn’t care that it was raining because I was home and my love for England was filling me to the brim with happiness. I was so happy that at the time I’d have proclaimed to anybody that Birmingham was the most beautiful place in the world and would have cried with joy had I been a bit more tired. I’d loved New England and New York so much but honestly, after having travelled for so long I was just keen to be back in Cressage.

Ps: thank you to Keith Denholm for his ‘top chauffeuring, money spending and witty banter’ throughout this holiday. It wouldn’t have been the same without you.

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