|This is what we left behind...|
As soon as we got off the plane, it felt colder. A lot colder, actually. That was it, we were back in town. After two weeks of half term, it was time to go back to the old routine. We started queuing at passport control. The custom official took my French passport. As usual, it wasn't working. It never does, and the French consulate will not do a thing. My British passport works better but I had taken my French one for some reason. Silly old me.
The custom official looked at me, typed my passport number on his computer, and looked at me in a stern way. I sighed. What was wrong with my French passport again?
"- There is a mistake in your date of birth"
"- Oh no, not at all" I duly confirmed my date of birth, taking his question very seriously indeed. You don't joke with an official, right? I didn't think that they are allowed to joke anyway. It is part of the job description: don't joke, don't have a sense of humour.
"- Well, you are a gorgeous woman then! And you look so young!" I couldn't believe what I was hearing and eventually managed to grin. My two daughters were with me and found the whole situation hilarious. I was too stunned to say anything. We have spent the last two weeks stuffing our faces and I felt fat, sweaty and tired. Not to mention that I badly need a haircut -my hair is really long. This proves that being gorgeous is relative. I France, I felt invisible. Over here, I feel like a goddess. It is all a matter of perspective. Maybe I was made to be British, after all?
We were back. The Gatwick Express was late as usual. I can't even remember what their excuse was this time. The Tube was packed, with plenty of lines suspended or disrupted. We were back and everything was as we had left it, really.
And the smell. It smelled like curry and wet earth. The London smell. We are back indeed. What about you? How do you feel about going back to the old routine.