He was the highway

20:09 (evening)

It feels like a long flight, although it isn’t. My legs are still numb. I mean, I sit at work for about the same amount of time, but I get to walk around. I have trouble sleeping, but I did nap for a couple of hours followed by two movies–my neck’s sore now.

I don’t know if I can go back to sleep. The teenager behind me is playing games on the monitor, which is also my headrest. Imagine someone tapping you awake for hours, except that you are awake, but they won’t stop. And the breath of the older man next to me smells of stale wine.

On planes, I’m always near babies, always. Just like at concerts where I have people in front of me that are over six feet tall. No further comments on that. My nausea has gone, at least. And I’ve been eating lots of bread.

My wrist is still sore — never bend your wrist when you throw a hook. I need to meditate.

 

08:56 (the next morning)

London — I feel at home again, although I haven’t lived here since 2013. Not much has changed, to be honest; the train system’s all the same.

I didn’t get my trifle in the end, because I forgot it has cream on top if you buy it from the shop. I have no Lactaid, and perhaps I shouldn’t have a trifle for breakfast, either. I’ve had too much bread in the last 12 hours. I hope I remember my way around. I never really hung out in London Victoria. I’m going to make my way to Barbican and then Waterloo. I crave yoga classes. And sleep. Hungry.

I’m flattered that London is greeting me with sunshine, while Calgary marked my departure with bleakness and rain.

 

16:59 (afternoon)

I’m on the Gatwick Express back to the airport. So that’s almost eight hours gone, and I don’t remember when I last slept, not to mention what day it is. I managed to catch up with some friends, but unfortunately, we didn’t have much time. No one could believe that it has almost been four years. And to be honest, London hasn’t changed: Pret A Manger is still across the road from Costa at Barbican and Southbank still has all these fancy restaurants. They seem to have added more and more glass buildings, which look ugly when juxtaposed against the one-hundred-year-old architecture made of bricks.

I’ve had two coffees, too many snacks, but constantly feeling hungry. Tiredness is kicking in for sure.

 

18:52 (evening)

I’m on my EasyJet, less than two hours away from home. I can’t describe how knackered I am. In the last twenty hours or so, I’ve only seen daylight. My body is nudging me, saying it feels messed up. My ears are blocked; I can barely hear a thing.

When I was at Gatwick Airport, I found out that Soundgarden’s Chrissy had died and couldn’t believe it. He had a perfect voice and mystical green eyes. Seeing Audioslave was on my wishlist. But apparently, my sister and I had seen them at a festival in 2004.

Anyway, I’m grateful that I saw Soundgarden four times (three times with NIN and once at the Hard Rockfest in London).

He was the highway.

Rest in peace, Chris. You had your reasons.

The last time an inspirational celebrity died while I was travelling was Robin Williams (2014). I was crying at the airport in Phoenix. But I’m not going to talk about suicide.

 

20:01 (still evening)

It’s raining in Hamburg. It did in London as well, just as I was leaving. The rain got through the hole of one of my shoes – you saw that hole. And no, I’m not getting rid of them.

I just realised that I’d missed the maritime climate. The land takes longer to warm up and needs longer to cool down. For me, that’s a form of stability.

The sun is setting in Hamburg.

 

01:42 (in the middle of the night)

OK, it’s officially Friday, and I believe I left Calgary exactly twenty-seven hours ago, but it feels longer than that. If there is one thing I need to do now, it is sleep.

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