Tuesday, May 06, 2008

safe & (un)sound

...back at home, safe and sound, sat at my own computer with the sound of the washing machine churning in the background...

i arrived in London soon after 7 am. yesterday morning, amazed and happy to meet weather which almost matched the warmth and sunshine of New York and Washington
(having left in 9', the current 19'is barmybalmy)
(i switched surprisingly rather effortlessly to USA fahrenheit but now I am back in centigrade-land)

happier to meet my dad, who had volunteered to meet me at Heathrow and drive me home

somewhat foggy-brained after almost 20 hours without sleep

which may excuse me for my dopey stupidity in leaving my camera on the plane.

Not that I'm looking for excuses or blame; it seems to me that blame is most often a waste of time and I've learned a lot in the last few years about regret and why and how to live without it.
So, I am not down-hearted. It has not found its way through lost property so far, but though it may still appear I prefer, at this stage, to think of it as lost for good.

And thats okay.

I'm a little surprised but rather pleased at how easily I have been able to say that - to take the decision that this will not cast any kind of negative pall over my time in the States. The camera itself is not an issue, of course its the memory cards. But the pictures I took are by no means even close to being the most important thing about my visit.

The best things about my visit were meeting up and spending time with old friends and with new and less new blogger friends. Reya's post about blog kin and family expressed this so well - those of you I was able to meet with did seem like good friends and/or family, the sense of easy familiarity and prior understanding and acceptance were wonderful.

Other best things include walking and looking - walking around your cities and streets (and a bit of countryside) looking, absorbing, experiencing.

Yes, I was looking forward to sorting through my photos, showing them to friends and family, posting them - and I spent some time looking through them on the plane. But, you know - taking the pictures contributed a good deal to my visit but having them is something I can let go of.

Taking photos has broadened and sharpened the way I look, the things I notice, the depth in which I experience things, and it encourages me to take time to see, feel and absorb - and all that is a part of my experience which can't be lost.

So there.

Of course, this could be partly the jet-lag speaking. Maybe in a few days when I am back in London time I will be stamping my feet, kicking myself and spitting. Not a pretty picture, eh? especially if I do all those at once.

I managed to stay awake till about 9.30 last night - so thats close to a sleepless 36 hours. I nearly dozed off even whilst catching up on new Dr. Who (yes, i am ashamed to admit it, even with my pretty good excuse). I slept well last night but today feel leaden, sluggish... my bed is calling, but I will resist. So if I post odd comments on your blogs, please put it down to my unsound brain and body-rhythms which don't quite know where they are.

I will post more about my trip which was ALL WONDERFUL but also have work to get down to, bills to sort out, UK friends to catch up with, garden spring-mayhem to enjoy...... so it may be a few days.


Dumdad said...

Welcome back!

That's really bad luck about the camera and you're taking it better than I would, that's for sure. I'd have seethed and stamped around for a while. But then, as you say, there's no one to blame and the main thing was the great trip and meeting all those people. Still, doigts crossed, the camera just might turn up....

Steve said...

I hope your camera shows up -- but as I mentioned in my e-mail, at least the rest of us have photos of many of the same events and time periods, so all is not lost. I'll keep my fingers crossed!

Barbara said...

So sorry to hear about the camera. I'm sending positive energy that whoever finds it will do the right thing! You will enjoy the pictures of others, but there's something special about your own. You always remember a sound or a smell that accompanied the picture. If it doesn't show up (or maybe even if it does), you will simply have to repeat your trip again next year!

mouse (aka kimy) said...

let's just hope that the cleaning crew at heathrow is an honest lot. I know it's not the same as having one's own pictures, but if your camera is indeed gone (let's hope not!) I too have many shots of the places we visited together.

rest up.... xxxxxx

tut-tut said...

Well; you'll just have to use your words, which you're very very good at . . .

Lynne said...

oh, letty, how sad. How very brave you're being about it. Much braver than I would be. I am so hoping that it does turn up. It might just take a few days. At least your memories of your time here are not lost—you still have all those to reflect on.

zquilts said...

I'll keep all crossable fingers and toes crossed and hoping for your camera's safe return. What a wonderful trip you had - and all the memories are "un-loseable"!

Absolute Vanilla (& Atyllah) said...

Welcome back, Lettuce.
I do so hope your camera shows up. But as you say, it's less the camera and memory cards with all that wonderful experience captured on them - but as you well know, it's an experience you'll never lose, even if the camera doesn't materialise.
I will nevertheless join zquilts in keeping fingers and toes crossed that the camera does turn up.
Sounds like you had a great time and look forward to reading about it!

Akelamalu said...

I so hope your camera turns up Lettie, a camera can be replaced but not the photos. :(

It takes ages to get back to normal when you're jet lagged - see you properly in about a week! :)

Sally Crawford said...

Welcome back Lettuce.

Flags; banners; flute bands, etc.

You would be AMAZED how hard airlines try to reunite passengers with their lost belongings.

If it has been found it will take time to get to lost luggage so don't despair. Just make sure they know you've lost it so they know to look out for it. Good luck.

lettuce said...

thanks DD - for the welcome back as well as the crossed digits - but, its the wonderful trip and people-meeting i'm focussing on.

steve, the most imp. pics are those of people and its great to have some from you and others.

yes indeed barbara, thats excellent reasoning. i will start saving now...

kimy i'm looking forward to seeing more of your pictures.

thankyou Tut-tut, thats a really nice comment

lynne, i'm finding it strangely easy to be "brave", so don't really think i merit praise. :o)

thanks ZQ, it was entirely wonderful, i will be writing at least a bit about it.

hi Vanilla, i hope you're getting well settled back at home too after your own travels.

ake, what exactly is "normal"? ;-p

thanks for the welcome Sally - and see how London brought on the sunshine for me?!!
(or is that just a little self-important?)

Chedwick University said...

Welcome Home!

We do hope to see you on our actual campus, but until that time there is the virtual campus.

Have a feeling you won't be cameraless for long.

Gary said...

No tadpoles?! How disappointing. Oh well, I shall take a page from your outlook and decide that all is well with things just as they are.

I hope by now you have sorted things out a bit (being away does bring about many dull chores that must be dealt with) and that you have gotten some much needed rest, with everything back in it's proper cycle.

Again, I must say how wonderful it was to meet you.

...So glad that dad was there to greet you upon your return.

Gary said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
luce said...

Hi honey, glad you're home safe and well, (sans camera though - what a shame - though you never know - it might come back to you!?!)

Looking forward to catching up with you properly soon and hearing all about it.


Lee's River/Zlatovyek said...

Bienvenue and welcome back to the centigrade universe, lettuce. rest up for the next challenge: telling the rest of us all about the trip while getting on with living in the present ;-)

trac said...

Oh yes - I soon learnt when I lost all of my pics on my computer that it was being there able to take them in the first place that's important - not having them.
(But it still might turn up eh?) :O)

Now.... about this UK friends to catch up with bit?? :O)

d. chedwick said...

if it makes you feel any better, someone told me how they traveled thru europe and lost things along the way... all pricey techno gadgets too... tip for traveling within your "electrics range" pack a power strip and plug all battery changing cords into it--that way you keep track of them) laptop, phone, camera etc

Reya Mellicker said...

I hope your camera turns up because I would love to see a bit of what caught your eye while you were here.

Agree with you completely about how useless it is to blame oneself or others. It never helps.

So onwards & upwards.

Missing you!

Ex-Shammickite said...

Boo, what a damned nuisance, oh well, what's done is done, and lots of your blogger friends will be able to supply you with mementoes, but, I know, it's not the same as having your own. You're handling this calamity very well, very calmly, very grownuply..... but don't you want to lock yourself in the loo and scream a bit.... just a little bit???

lettuce said...

hi chedwick uni. How nice to meet with you on the virtual campus in the meantime. are you working on any virtual essays at the moment? I have a pile next to me here which are virtually useless...

gary it is most disappointing :o(
i just hope the compost-bin rats didn't eat all the little tadpole-producing frogs... i have my suspicions though. Red in tooth and weird little hand-claws.

luce its about time we met! i miss you!

thanks lee - it does sound like a bit of a challenge! i'm taking my time thinking about it

trac, i'm thinking brunch and beer

ched, i'm really hoping this is a mistake not to be repeated. thanks for the tip tho

indeed reya. missing you too! xx

ex-shammie, no i really don't. No point stewing over it. Stewing doesn't suit lettuce.

Donna said...

So good to see you back honey. Can't wait to hear all about your adventures. Your wonderful style of writing will be able to paint the pictures we need to share your trip with you :-)

lettuce said...

thanks donna sweetie.

Ex-Shammickite said...
This comment has been removed by the author.