So there we were in early Spring 2013 in West London in the throes of departing a country after 12 great years. A bewildered one and a half year old, an even more bewildered but excited four year old, and 2 forty-something year old knackered parents all revved up for this new adventure. We had resigned, handed in notice in our rented house, handed in notice at kindergarten, cancelled services, donated, sold cars and anything else that was sellable. We were packed up for good and glory.
We were leaving behind the old cold 5 bedroom house in leafy Isleworth in West London.
We were leaving behind the fabulous wild half-acre back garden with the covered over ponds with promise.
We were leaving behind the spectacular view from said garden of the underbelly of planes about to land in Heathrow.
And with that, lamentably, we were leaving behind the inability to plan any sort of weekend social event without meticulously studying the flight path plan. This was so that we didn’t have to see the passing terror in friends’ eyes as they thought the plane was landing in the football field out the back. Or in the attic.
Although British people are so wonderful and polite, they would pretend not to notice the bomb blast noise of planes and try ever so hard to converse as normal. I loved them for this. But it was like avoiding a party in the corner of the room with generations of elephants meeting for the first time and going for it. After many great years in London, all the signs were trumpeting at us that it was time to go.
Oh my, we were going to miss it. We weren’t going to miss family as there had always been a dearth of that in London. We were truly going to miss our friends, although the extent of this would only reveal itself later. We were off to Norway and all doors were banging shut behind us. No need for a Plan B when you have full confidence in Plan A, right?